Hansard: NCOP: Unrevised hansard

House: National Council of Provinces

Date of Meeting: 24 Nov 2010

Summary

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Minutes

UNREVISED HANSARD

 

WEDNESDAY, 24 NOVEMBER 2010

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PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF PROVINCES

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The Council met at 10:03.

 

The Chairperson took the Chair and requested members to observe a moment of silence for prayers or meditation.

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS, TABLINGS AND COMMITTEE REPORTS – see col 000.

 

NOTICES OF MOTION

 

Mr M W MAKHUBELA: Chairperson, I hereby give notice on behalf of Cope that at the next sitting of the Council I will move:

 

That the Council -

 

  1. debates the decision by the Cabinet to withdraw a Bill, published on 17 June 2009, to amend the Constitution in terms of the existing rights and duties of a municipality to distribute electricity despite the long delay and uncertainties that have already inflicted a heavy toll on the economy;
  2. further debates the direct and indirect costs to the productive economy as a result of inefficiencies in the current electricity distribution industry structure, delays in restructuring and distribution, and the backlog in maintenance and refurbishment, which has been stated as being a ticking time bomb; and

 

  1. calls on the Minister to provide the strong political support and executive sponsorship necessary for the continuity and follow-through of this fragmented R30billion-a-year industry.

 

I so move.

 

Mr S H PLAATJIE: Chairperson, I hereby give notice on behalf of Cope that at the next sitting of the Council I will move:

 

That the House -

 

  1. debates the dismal failure of the Department of Basic Education to provide a safe learning environment for pupils at its schools, so much so that many learners, even those who are underage, are frequently subjected to violent crimes which have become the order of the day;

 

  1. further debates the failure of our education system to discourage the use of violence in society and in schools to resolve conflict, as evinced when a Grade 10 learner stabbed a Grade 9 learner with a pair of scissors, inflicting several injuries to the head; and

 

  1. calls for urgent intervention by government to address society’s propensity to use physical violence as frequently as it does in our country.

 

I so move.

 

Mr D B FELDMAN: Chairperson, I hereby give notice on behalf of Cope that at the next sitting of the Council I will move:

 

That the House -

 

  1. debates government allowing the National Youth Development Agency, NYDA, to overstep its allocated budget of R29 million to host the National Youth Development Agency World Festival of Youth and Students;

 

  1. further debates the failure of government to put an end to the unnecessary and wasteful spending of government-sponsored entities; and

 

  1. calls on the Presidency to halt this spending which, because of the invitation to youth leagues, including the youth league of the Workers’ Party of North Korea and Zimbabwe’s Zanu-PF youth league, is perceived as being supportive of the nations concerned.

 

I so move.

 

Mrs E C VAN LINGEN: Chairperson, on behalf of the DA I hereby wish to give notice that at the next sitting of the Council, I will move:

 

That the House -

 

  1. notes that the information submitted to the NCOP Select Committee on Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs by the Kou-Kamma municipality or the provincial department is not altogether correct as per pp 4213 to 4214 of the ATC dated 23 November;

 

  1. further notes that there are a number of errors that have been made in the financial department of the municipality, such as:

 

  1. of the 4 730 debtors who owed the municipality, an amount of R47 million cannot be correct as there are residents in Clarkson, Church and Basia Streets as well as residents in Smartie Town who have been taxed by the municipality on properties not owned by the residents;
  2. the DA has submitted a motion, which is attached, to the Kou-Kamma council requesting that the land be transferred into the names of the residents at the cost of the municipality for the following reasons:

 

  1. the Church donated the land;

 

  1. USAID donated the money;

 

  1. Kou-Kamma Municipality has not transferred the property since 2005; and

 

  1. the municipality was requested to reverse the illegal charges against these residents by writing off the debt against their names;

 

  1. requests the Kou-Kamma Municipality to implement the Kou-Kamma Council decision taken in this regard on 12 October 2010, to write off the debt of the Clarkson communities and to transfer the land in terms of the motion into the names ...

 

[Time expired.]

 

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon members, this is not a comment on the notice that has just been given, but I would like to advise that it would actually be proper to raise certain kinds of matters in the committees on which members serve. If so, correct action can be taken; merely moving a notice might not see a situation being corrected at all.

 

If the information is not correct, we should allow the committee to debate it and report back to the House by way of a proper report. This is just some advice that I wish to give to hon members.

 

Mnr D A WORTH: Agb Voorsitter, namens die DA gee ek kennis van my voorneme om die volgende voorstel voor die Raad te laat dien:

 

Dat die Raad -

 

(1)        kennis neem dat die DA die antwoord van die Minister van Samewerkende Regering en Tradisionele Sake, mnr Sicelo Siceka, rondom die ondersoek na verskeie aangeleenthede in die Matjhabeng-munisipaliteit verwelkom;

 

(2)        verder kennis neem dat die Minister aangedui het dat die Vrystaat se LUR vir Samewerkende Regering, Tradisionele Sake en Menslike Nedersettings, mnr Msebenzi Zwane, aangedui het dat hy, ingevolge artikel 106 van die Wet op Plaaslike Regering: Munisipale Stelsels, Wet 32 van 2000, ’n ondersoek in Matjhabeng geloods het;

 

(3)        verder kennis neem dat die Minister die ondersoek reeds op 15 November 2010 begin het en dat ’n evaluering van die implementering van die omstrede Ramathe Fivaz-verslag ook ondersoek sal word;

 

(4)        erken dat hierdie ondersoek nodig is omdat die verslag al ’n geruime tyd beskikbaar is, maar deur die munisipaliteit weerhou word, en dat ’n opdrag van die wetgewer om die verslag bekend te maak ook deur die munisipaliteit verontagsaam is;

 

(5)        verder erken dat hoe langer die omstrede verslag vanaf die raad, wetgewer en publiek weerhou word, hoe meer omstrede dit raak; en

 

  1. die hoop uitspreek dat die LUR se ondersoek saam met die Ramathe Fivaz-verslag aan die Raad en die wetgewer bekend gemaak sal word.

(Translation of Afrikaans notice of motion follows.)

 

[Mr D A WORTH: Hon Chairperson, I hereby give notice that at the next sitting of the Council I shall move the following on behalf of the DA:

 

That the Council -

 

(1)        notes that the DA welcomes the reply of the Minister of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Mr Sicelo Shiceka, regarding the investigation of several incidents in the Matjhabeng municipality;

 

(2)        further notes that the Minister has indicated that the MEC for co-operative governance, traditional affairs and human settlements in the Free State, Mr Msebenzi Zwane, indicated that, in terms of section 106 of the Local Government: Municipal Systems Act, Act 32 of 2000, he has launched an investigation in Matjhabeng;

 

(3)        further notes that the Minister already started the investigation on 15 November 2010 and that an evaluation of the implementation of the controversial Ramathe Fivaz report will also be investigated;

 

(4)        acknowledges that this investigation is necessary because the report has been available for quite some time, but is being withheld by the municipality, and that a directive by the legislature to publish the report has also been ignored by the municipality;

 

(5)        further acknowledges that the longer the controversial report is withheld from the Council, legislature and public, the more controversial it becomes; and

(6)        hopes that the MEC’s investigation along with the Ramathe Fivaz report will be made available to the Council and legislature.]

 

Mr D V BLOEM: Chairperson, on behalf of Cope I give notice that I intend moving:

 

That the House -

 

  1. debates the friendly warning of Dr Pallo Jordan, one of the most respected intellectuals in the ANC, regarding the silly attempt by the government to muzzle the modern media as being “a fool’s errand”;

 

  1. further debates the warning that the party would be putting itself into a lose-lose situation that would detract from the credibility it had acquired by being in the vanguard for media freedom from the time of Chief Albert Luthuli and Oliver Tambo;

 

  1. acknowledges Dr Jordan’s further friendly caution that the Bill would in all likelihood face constitutional challenges and be defeated, which, if it happened, would leave egg on the face of the government.

 

I thank you.

Mr Z MLENZANA: Chairperson, on behalf of Cope I hereby give notice that at the next sitting of the Council, I will move:

 

That the House -

 

  1. debates the enormous danger to the main water source in and around the Ventersdorp district on account of the municipal sewerage pump station having been allowed to deteriorate to such an extent that sewage is now seeping out on a daily basis;

 

  1. acknowledges the impact of polluted water, not only on chickens and other livestock, but also on the general population of the area;

 

  1. notes the failure of government to halt such deterioration of essential infrastructure in many towns and cities around the country;

 

  1. acknowledges the need for government to start addressing these mounting problems of infrastructure collapse before the problem becomes too big.

 

I so move.

 

Mnr T B BEYLEVELDT: Voorsitter, namens die DA gee ek kennis van my voorneme om die volgende voorstel voor die Raad te laat dien:

 

Dat die Huis -

 

  1. kennis neem dat daar die afgelope tyd verskeie voorvalle van geweld in Khayelitsha voorgekom het onder die voorwendsel van swak dienslewering;

 

  1. verder kennis neem dat drie voertuie verlede week aan die brand gesteek is gedurende sogenaamde dienslewering proteste;

 

  1. toegee dat dit ironies is dat al drie voertuie besig was met dienslewering aan die gemeenskap in die sin dat —

 

  1. een besig was om matriekeksamen vraestelle af te lewer;

 

  1. een besig was om gestremde persone te vervoer met ’n voertuig wat deur die Kaapstad Metro voorsien is; en

 

  1. die derde besig was om kinders na ’n plek vir misbruikte kinders te vervoer;

 

  1. daarop let dat ’n vierde voertuig – ’n ambulans wat besig was om te reageer op ’n noodoproep van iemand in die gemeenskap – brandstigting vrygespring het deur te ontsnap, maar onder die klippe gesteek was;

 

  1. erken dat dit ironies is dat dienste vernietig word onder die naam van dienslewering; en

 

  1. ’n beroep doen op alle partye om hul ondersteuners te maan om verantwoordelik op te tree om sodoende ’n beter lewe vir almal te help skep.

(Translation of Afrikaans notice of motion follows.)

 

[Mr T B BEYLEVELDT: Chairperson, I hereby give notice that at the next sitting of the Council I shall move the following on behalf of the DA:

 

That the Council -

 

(1)        notes that several incidents of violence have taken place in Khayelitsha recently under the pretext of poor service delivery;

 

(2)        further notes that three vehicles were set alight last week during the so-called service delivery protests;

 

(3)        recognises that it is ironic that all three vehicles were rendering services to the community in the sense that -

(a)        one was delivering matric examination papers;

 

(b)          another was transporting disabled people by means of a vehicle which was provided by the Cape Metro; and

 

(c)        the third was transporting children to a place for abused children;

 

(4)        notes that a fourth vehicle – an ambulance that was responding to an emergency call from someone in the community - got away before being set alight, but was stoned;

 

(5)        acknowledges that it is ironic that services are being  disrupted in the name of service delivery; and

 

(6)          call on all parties to urge their supporters to behave responsibly in order to help create a better life for all.]

 

OUTOILET WEBSITE

 

(Draft Resolution)

 

Mr T A MASHAMAITE: Chairperson, I hereby move without notice:

 

That the Council -

(1)        notes that Vodacom has blocked access to the controversial gossip site Outoilet after the posting of the sex video which featured a 15-year-old girl and two boys who were aged 14 and 16 years at Jules High School;

 

(2)        further notes that the Outoilet website is being used to defame people and has resulted in several suicides and depression of disgruntled teenagers; and

 

(3)        takes this opportunity to commend Vodacom for such a bold step and calls on other cellular network providers to follow suit.

 

Motion agreed to in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

ANC VICTIMISATION IN KWAZULU-NATAL

 

(Draft Resolution)

 

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mrs N W Magadla): Chairperson, I hereby move without notice:

 

That the Council –

 

  1. notes with utter dismay concerns raised by the leadership of the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal;
  2. notes that ANC members are being victimised for campaigning for the party by traditional leaders aligned to the IFP in KwaPhindangene in northern KwaZulu-Natal;

 

  1. further notes that the ANC members who attended a meeting called by the ANC recently in the area will be prosecuted in a traditional court for campaigning for the ANC;

 

  1. takes this opportunity to condemn in the strongest possible terms such a blatant attack on the constitutional rights and the freedom which many of the people of South Africa fought for with their lives; and

 

  1. calls on the House of Traditional Leaders and the Minister of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs to engage the traditional leaders in KwaPhindangene about such an unfortunate practice which is an attack on the rights of our people and an attack on our hard-earned democracy. I so move.

 

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Any objection to the motion? In the light of the objection, the motion may not be proceeded with. The motion without notice will now become a notice of motion.

 

TRAGIC DEATH OF RETLABUSA MOKONYANE

 

(Draft Resolution)

Ms B V MNCUBE: Chairperson, I hereby move without notice:

 

That the Council –

 

(1)        notes with profound sadness the tragic death of Retlabusa Mokonyane, who was the son of Gauteng Premier Ms Nomvula Mokonyane;

 

(2)        further notes that Retlabusa Mokonyane reportedly shot himself to death yesterday, 23 November 2010; and

 

(3)        takes this opportunity to express its heartfelt condolences to the Mokonyane family and friends and wishes them strength in this difficult time.

 

Motion agreed to in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

RESULTS OF INTERNATIONAL ORGANISATION FOR MIGRATION’S STUDY IN RESPECT OF HIV

 

(Draft Resolution)

 

Ms D Z RANTHO: Chairperson, I hereby move without notice:

 

That the Council –

 

(1)        notes that a study conducted by the International Organisation for Migration on 23 farms in Malelane, Tzaneen and Musina found that 39,5% of the farming workforce who anonymously gave blood specimens for testing are HIV-positive;

 

(2)        further notes the study found that almost half of women working on farms around Limpopo and Mpumalanga are HIV-positive, compared to only a third of the male workforce; and

 

(3)        takes this opportunity to call on government, particularly the Department of Health and the Department of Labour, to establish programmes targeted at raising awareness among farmworkers about exposure to concurrent partnerships, transactional sex, irregular condom use, and sexually transmitted infections.

 

Motion agreed to in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

RAPE AT GREENSIDE PRIMARY SCHOOL

 

(Draft Resolution)

 

Mrs M C DIKGALE: Chairperson, I hereby move without notice:

 

That the Council -

(1)        notes with utter dismay two incidents at Greenside Primary School, which is situated between Seshego and Polokwane, where an eight-year-old pupil was allegedly raped in the school’s toilets, and a Grade 2 pupil is unable to return to school for fear of being attacked again after she escaped being raped by locking herself in one of the school’s toilets;

 

(2)        further notes that the two incidents follows the Jules High School incident in which a 15-year-old girl was reportedly raped by two boys, aged 14 and 16 years, and their charges were later converted to statutory rape for engaging in sex while underage; and

 

(3)        takes this opportunity to condemn the rape of the eight-year-old girl and calls on education authorities to strengthen safety in our schools and ensure that life skills education covers sexual education in order to alert our learners about the dangers of underage and unprotected sex.

 

I so move. Thank you, Chairperson.

 

Motion agreed to in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

SOUTH AFRICAN PARLIAMENTARY RUGBY TEAM TO PLAY AGAINST ARGENTINA’S PARLIAMENTARY RUGBY TEAM

(Draft Resolution)

 

Mr W F FABER: Chairperson, I hereby move without notice:

 

That the Council -

 

(1)        notes that the parliamentary rugby team will leave on a tour to Argentina on 28 November 2010 and play against Argentina’s national parliamentary rugby team;

 

(2)        further notes that two of the NCOP members will be playing for the South African team and will also take part in functions with the South African ambassador in Buenos Aires; and

 

(3)        wishes the team the best of luck.

 

I so move.

 

Motion agreed to in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

METRORAIL TRAGEDY

 

(Draft Resolution)

 

Ms M P THEMBA: Chairperson, I hereby move without notice:

That the Council -

 

(1)        notes reports that indicate that 300 commuters died and 230 were injured on Metrorail trains throughout South Africa from March 2008 to February 2009;

 

(2)        further notes that 119 injuries and 9 deaths in train accidents were the result of people being thrown or falling off moving trains;

 

(3)        takes this opportunity to call on all train users to refrain from dangerous antics when using trains; and

 

(4)        further calls on Metrorail and the police to strengthen rail safety by deploying more security personnel and police to control overcrowding on trains, which results in people hanging out of train windows and doors, and even sitting on the rooftops of trains.

 

I so move.

 

Motion agreed to in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

SPREAD OF HIV and AIDS

 

(Draft Resolution)

Ms M G BOROTO: Chairperson, I hereby move without notice:

 

That the Council -

 

(1)        notes that only a few days before World Aids Day, which takes place on 1 December of every year, the United Nations has released a report indicating that progress is being made worldwide against the spread of the HI and Aids virus, as fewer people are becoming infected and fewer are dying from the disease;

 

(2)        further notes that the report states that antiretroviral treatment has had a profound effect on mortality rates across the globe, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, specifically in countries such as Ethiopia, Nigeria, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe; and

 

(3)        takes this opportunity to congratulate all stakeholders involved in the fight against the spread of the epidemic and on their relentless efforts to ensure that more people get access to life-saving drugs and that communities become even more aware of the dangers of unprotected sex.

I so move.

 

Motion agreed to in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

CONGRATULATIONS TO TELKOM ON LAUNCH OF 8.TA

 

(Draft Resolution)

 

Mr H B GROENEWALD: Chairperson, I hereby move without notice on behalf of the DA:

 

That the Council -

 

(1)        congratulates Telkom on the launch of 8.ta, their cellphone component;

 

(2)        believes that 8.ta’s contribution to the South African public will bring many benefits to each and every household in our country; and

 

(3)        further believes that the cost per unit will also be to the benefit of the South African public.

 

Chairperson, there is a new finger sign for the deaf people, and it is like this, not like that - 8.ta.

 

Motion agreed to in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

POLICE OPERATION TARGETING ILLEGAL SHEBEENS IN GUGULETHU

 

(Draft Resolution)

 

Mr T E CHAANE: Chairperson, I hereby move without notice:

 

That the Council -

 

(1)        notes that police swooped on illegal shebeens in Gugulethu on Sunday, 21 November, arresting 44 people for alcohol-related offences like drinking in public;

 

(2)        further notes that about 138 police and traffic officers took part in the operation, targeting illegal shebeens that have been identified as major contributing factors to the mugging, hijacking and drunk driving in Gugulethu; and

 

(3)        takes this opportunity to congratulate the police on their concerted efforts to crack down on illegal sales outlets that have been identified by Gugulethu residents as a major source of nuisance and criminality in the area.

 

I so move.

 

Motion agreed to in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

BEAUFORT WEST POLICE STRIKE A BLOW AGAINST RHINO HORN SMUGGLERS

 

(Draft Resolution)

 

Mnr M J R DE VILLIERS: Agb Voorsitter, ek stel sonder kennisgewing voor:

 

Dat die Raad -

 

(1)          kennis neem dat die jag en doodmaak van renosters in ons wildkampe en nasionale reservate deur onwettige smokkelhandel kommerwekkend toegeneem het;

 

(2)          verder kennis neem dat die flink optrede van polisiebeamptes op Beaufort-Wes twee mans in besit van 15 renosterhorings betrap en in hegtenis geneem het;

 

(3)          ook kennis neem dat hulle tans in die polisieselle is en in die Landdroshof te Beaufort-Wes op aanklagte van die onwettige besit van renosterhorings sal verskyn;

 

(4)        vertrou dat die polisie se provinsiale georganiseerde misdaadeenheid tot meer inligting sal kom deur middel van hierdie optrede; en

(5)        sy gelukwense aan hierdie polisie en die volle span in beheer te Beaufort-Wes sal oordra.

(Translation of Afrikaans draft resolution follows.)

 

[Mr M J R DE VILLIERS: Hon Chairperson, I move without notice:

 

That the Council –

 

  1. notes that the hunting and killing of rhinoceros in our game sanctuaries and national parks by the illegal poaching trade has increased alarmingly;

 

  1. further notes the swift action by police officers in Beaufort West, who caught and arrested two men in possession of 15 rhinoceros horns;

 

  1. acknowledges that they are currently in the police cells at Beaufort West and will be appearing in the Beaufort West Magistrate’s Court on charges of illegal possession of rhinoceros horns;

 

  1. trusts that through this action the provincial organised crime unit of the police will gather more information; and

 

  1. conveys its congratulations to the police and the whole team in charge in Beaufort West.]

 

Motion agreed to in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

TAKING PARLIAMENT TO THE PEOPLE

(Draft Resolution)

 

Mr A WATSON: Chairperson, I hereby move without notice on behalf of the DA:

 

That the Council -

 

(1)          notes the negative and ill-informed report with regard to the recent Taking Parliament to the People in the Sunday Times of 21 November 2010, which once again highlights the general ignorance about the work of the NCOP and underlines the need for a promotional strategy to improve the image of the Council and to rename it the National Senate; and

 

(2)          further notes that this image would be greatly improved if Cabinet Ministers of the government took the Council seriously and attended sittings for which their attendance is designated on the programme prepared and confirmed weeks in advance.

 

I so move.

 

Motion agreed to in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

HIGHER EDUCATION LAWS AMENDMENT BILL

 

(Consideration of Bill and of Report thereon)

 

HIGHER EDUCATION AND TRAINING LAWS AMENDMENT BILL

 

(Consideration of Bill and of Report thereon)

 

SKILLS DEVELOPMENT LEVIES AMENDMENT BILL

 

(Consideration of Bill and of Report thereon)

 

Ms M W MAKGATE: Thank you, Chairperson and hon members. These three linked amending Bills can be considered as a trilogy arising out of the division, in May 2009, of education legislation at the national level between the Department of Higher Education and Training and the Department of Basic Education. This division precipitated the need for technical corrections and legislation applicable to skills development that had been transferred from the Department of Labour to the Department of Higher Education and Training.

 

The amending Bills are technical in nature, addressing the legislative consequences of the departmental restructuring, do not impact on the substance of any legislation and do not introduce any new policy or legislation.

 

They are rather intended to make their principal Acts more explicit and specific and to tighten any generalities; to clarify existing policy, concepts and qualifications that are dealt with in different pieces of legislation; and to clarify definitions and objectives of the legislation and to include them in a readily accessible source.

 

The first of the three amending Bills tabled by the Department of Higher Education and Training is the Higher Education Laws Amendment Bill, which deals primarily with the National Qualifications Framework Act and the Skills Development Act. It also seeks to align core education legislation with the new education dispensation.

 

The pieces of legislation to be amended include the Higher Education Act, the Skills Development Act, the National Student Financial Aid Scheme Act and the National Qualifications Framework Act. This will ensure that all higher education programmes offered in South Africa by a foreign-based institution are registered with the National Qualification Framework. In addition, all higher education institutions that offer degrees, diplomas or certificates must be registered with the National Qualifications Framework.

 

The second Bill, the Higher Education and Training Laws Amendment Bill, also seeks to bring about alignment of the following core pieces of legislation with the new education dispensation that came about in 2009, when the former Department of Education was split into the Department of Basic Education and the Department of Higher Education and Training as a result of the transfer of administration and powers.

 

Even though the Bill seeks to introduce new sections in the Adult Basic Education and Training Act and the Further Education and Training Colleges Act, these sections are, in fact, incorporations of existing statutory provisions applicable to these institutions before the transfer.

 

The existing statutory provisions, currently contained in the National Education Policy Act of 1996 and in the Employment of Educators Act of 1998, are laws that have been primarily transferred to the Minister of Basic Education and that are relevant to adult education and training centres and further education and training colleges only in so far as the laws relate to those institutions.

 

The Skills Development Levies Amendment Bill, the third amending Bill of the trilogy, aims to effect certain amendments to take into account the transfer in 2009 of the skills development responsibility from the Department of Labour to the Department of Higher Education and Training.

 

It amends the principal Act’s definition of “director-general” and “Minister” from Labour to Higher Education and Training. The Select Committee on Education and Recreation considered and adopted the three Bills without amendments. I thank you. [Applause.]

Debate concluded.

 

Higher Education Laws Amendment Bill agreed to in accordance with section 75 of the Constitution.

 

Question put: That the Higher Education and Training Laws Amendment Bill be agreed to.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Higher Education and Training Laws Amendment Bill accordingly agreed to in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

Skills Development Levies Amendment Bill agreed to in accordance with section 75 of the Constitution.

 

ADJUSTMENTS APPROPRIATION BILL

 

(Consideration of Votes and Schedule)

 

Mr T E CHAANE: Chairperson, hon members, the Adjustments Appropriation Bill was tabled in Parliament on 27 October 2010 by the Minister of Finance during the tabling of the 2010 Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement. The Bill effects adjustments to the appropriation of money from the National Revenue Fund for the requirements of the state in respect of the financial year ending on 31 March 2011.

 

During the 2010 adjustment period, additional allocations amounting to R5,854 billion were added to the baselines of the national departments. The additional allocation of R5,854 billion was distributed among the government clusters as follows: Central Government Administration was allocated R1,801 billion; R344,109 million for Financial and Administrative Services; R334,189 million for Social Services; R1,811 billion for Justice, Crime Prevention and Security; and R1,564 billion for Economic Services and Administration.

 

The additional allocations were allocated to all departments except for the six departments that received downward adjustments amounting to R1,033 billion: International Relations and Co-operation, R108,608 million; National Treasury, R10,502 million; Defence and Military Veterans, R272,742 million; Environmental Affairs, R119,280 million; Mineral Resources, R34,174 million; and Science and Technology, R487,558 million.

 

With respect to economic classification, the following adjustments to the appropriations were effected. Current Payments received an additional allocation of R5,770 billion, which was distributed as follows: Compensation of Employees, R4,641 billion, with R2,762 billion for the Department of Defence and Military and R1,267 billion for Police - these were the major beneficiaries. Goods and Services received R1,122 billion; and an allocation amounting in aggregate to R6,629 million was allocated to other.

 

The main appropriation for Transfers and Subsidies was adjusted downwards by R1,056 billion during the 2010 adjustment period. The downward adjustment was mainly effected in the Department of Defence and Military Veterans, whereby the transfers and subsidised economic classification category was adjusted downwards by R2,884 billion.

 

Capital Assets Payments received an additional allocation of R106,230 million, with the Department of Public Works, at R143,321 million, being the major beneficiary during the 2010 adjustments period.

 

Financial Assets Payments received an additional allocation of R560 000, which was distributed as follows: The Department of Home Affairs was allocated R100 000; and the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development R460 000.

 

The committee, having considered this amending Bill on 17 November 2010, recommends that this House adopt the Bill without adjustments. I thank you, Chair. [Applause.]

 

Vote No 1 – The Presidency – put.

 

Division demanded.

 

The Council divided:

 

AYES - 34: Adams, F; Bloem, D V; Boroto, M G; de Beer, C J; Dikgale, M C; Feldman, D B; Gamede, D D; Jacobs, M P; Mabe, B P; Mabija, L; Magadla, N W; Maine, M C; Makhubela, M W; Makgate, M W; Mashamaite, T A; Mashile, B L; Matila, A G; Mazosiwe, S S; Memela, T C; Mncube, B V; Mnguni, B A; Mofokeng, T M H; Mokgobi, M H; Mokgoro, G G; Moshodi, M L; Ntwanambi, N D; Nyambi, A J; Nzimande, L P M; Plaatjie, S H; Qikani, A N D; Rantho, D Z; Sibande, M P; Sinclair, K A; Themba, M P.

 

NOES - 11: Abrahams, B L; Bekker, J M; Beyleveldt, T B; de Villiers, M J R; Faber, W F; Groenewald, H B; Gunda, J J; Lees, R A; van Lingen, E C; Watson, A; Worth, D A.

 

Vote accordingly agreed to (Democratic Alliance and Independent Democrats dissenting).

 

Vote No 2 — Parliament — put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 3 – Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs – put.

 

Vote agreed to (Democratic Alliance and Independent Democrats dissenting).

Vote No 4 – Home Affairs – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 5 – International Relations and Co-operation – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 6 – Public Works – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 7 – Women, Children and People with Disabilities – put.

Vote agreed to (Democratic Alliance and Independent Democrats dissenting).

 

Vote No 8 – Government Communications and Information System – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 9 – National Treasury – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 10 – Public Enterprises – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 11 – Public Service and Administration – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 12 – Statistics South Africa – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 13 – Arts and Culture – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 14 – Basic Education – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 15 – Health – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 16 – Higher Education and Training – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 17 – Labour – put.

 

Vote agreed to (Democratic Alliance and Independent Democrats dissenting).

 

Vote No 18 – Social Development– put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 19 – Sport and Recreation South Africa – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 20 – Correctional Services – put.

 

Vote agreed to (Democratic Alliance and Independent Democrats

dissenting).

 

Vote No 21 – Defence and Military Veterans – put.

 

Vote agreed to (Democratic Alliance and Independent Democrats dissenting).

 

Vote No 22 – Independent Complaints Directorate – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 23 – Justice and Constitutional Development – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 24 – Police – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 25 –Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 26 – Communications – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 27 – Economic Development – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 28 – Energy – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 29 – Environmental Affairs – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 30 – Human Settlements – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 31 – Mineral Resources – put.

 

Vote agreed to (Democratic Alliance and Independent Democrats dissenting).

 

Vote No 32 – Rural Development and Land Reform – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 33 – Science and Technology – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 34 – Tourism – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 35 – Trade and Industry – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 36 – Transport – put and agreed to.

 

Vote No 37 – Water Affairs – put and agreed to.

 

Schedule put and agreed to.

 

ADJUSTMENTS APPROPRIATION BILL

 

(Consideration of Bill and of Report thereon)

 

There was no debate.

 

Bill agreed to in accordance with section 75 of the Constitution.

 

CONSIDERATION OF REPORT OF SELECT COMMITTEE ON CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL AFFAIRS - PROGRESS REPORTS ON INTERVENTIONS IN ALFRED NZO DISTRICT MUNICIPALITY, EASTERN CAPE

 

CONSIDERATION OF REPORT OF SELECT COMMITTEE ON CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL AFFAIRS - PROGRESS REPORTS ON INTERVENTIONS IN SUNDAY’S RIVER VALLEY LOCAL MUNICIPALITY, EASTERN CAPE

CONSIDERATION OF REPORT OF SELECT COMMITTEE ON CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL AFFAIRS - PROGRESS REPORTS ON INTERVENTIONS IN KOU-KAMMA LOCAL MUNICIPALITY, EASTERN CAPE

 

Mr M H MOKGOBI: Hon Chair, the select committee has considered the progress reports on the three municipalities. Alfred Nzo District Municipality has reported progress ever since the committee’s visit.

 

However, there is a need to bail out the Sunday’s River Local Municipality with about R20 million to assist the administrator to conclude the intervention. There is a report about Kou-Kamma Local Municipality, though we still have to make a greater effort to curb political and administrative interference.

 

We therefore recommend that the House notes and approves the progress. Thank you. [Applause.]

 

Debate concluded.

 

Question put: That the Report on Progress Reports on Interventions in Alfred Nzo District Municipality, Eastern Cape be adopted.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Report on Progress Reports on Interventions in Alfred Nzo District Municipality, Eastern Cape accordingly adopted in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

Question put: That the Report on Progress Reports on Interventions in Sunday’s River Valley Local Municipality, Eastern Cape be adopted.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Report on Progress Reports on Interventions in Sunday’s River Valley Local Municipality, Eastern Cape accordingly adopted in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

Question put: That the Report on Progress Reports on Interventions in Kou-Kamma Local Municipality, Eastern Cape be adopted.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Report on Progress Reports on Interventions in Kou-Kamma Local Municipality, Eastern Cape accordingly adopted in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

CONSIDERATION OF REPORT OF SELECT COMMITTEE ON CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL AFFAIRS - PERFORMANCE OF MUNICIPALITIES IN NORTHERN CAPE FOR 2007-08 FINANCIAL YEAR

 

 

Mr M H MOKGOBI: Chairperson, the statement provides an examination of the 2007-08 Municipal Performance Report. The committee observed a remarkable improvement though there are still some financial challenges.

 

On the basis of the observations, the committee recommends that the provincial executive should improve the employment profile of disabled people and that they should further improve in respect of critical skills and the filling of vacant positions. The committee therefore recommends the report for endorsement. Thank you [Applause.]

 

Debate concluded.

 

Question put: That the Report be adopted.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Report accordingly adopted in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

CONSIDERATION OF REPORT OF SELECT COMMITTEE ON CO-OPERATIVE GOVERNANCE AND TRADITIONAL AFFAIRS - INTERVENTION IN MSUNDUZI LOCAL MUNICIPALITY, KWAZULU-NATAL

 

Mr M H MOKGOBI: Chairperson, the committee observed that there now is political, financial and administrative stability. However, there are cases of fraud and corruption. The committee, after interacting with stakeholders, recommends that forensic investigations be suspended and, in their place, the Hawks should take over.

 

The Speaker and the mayor should deal with the issue of the absence of councillors and, therefore, the committee recommends to the House that it endorses the interventions and further recommends that the MEC ensures that regular reports are submitted to the House. I thank you. [Applause.]

 

Debate concluded.

 

Question put: That the Report be adopted.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape

 

CONSIDERATION OF REPORT OF SELECT COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONSMEDIUM-TERM BUDGET POLICY STATEMENT

 

Mr T E CHAANE: Chairperson, hon members, the Minister of Finance tabled the Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement, MTBPS, on 27 October, outlining the Budget priorities of government for the medium-term estimates. The MTBPS spending issues portion was referred to the Select Committee on Appropriations to consider and report on in accordance with their mandate, as outlined in the Money Bills Amendment Procedure and Related Matters Act, Act 9 of 2009.

 

Among its responsibilities and as per section 6(1) of the Act in respect of the MTBPS, the committee is required to consider and report on the following issues: the spending priorities of national government for the next three years; the proposed division of revenue between spheres of government and between arms of government within a sphere for the next three years; and the proposed substantial adjustments to conditional grant allocations to provinces and local government, if any.

 

With regard to medium-term spending priorities, the government prioritised its resources in the following areas: job creation initiatives, enhancing the quality of education and skills development, improving the provision of quality health care, driving a more comprehensive rural development strategy and, finally, intensifying the fight against crime and corruption.

 

The MTBPS reflects Public Service delivery commitment as informed by an agreed set of development and transformation goals. In making strategic choices over the medium term, the government will focus on outcomes that have the greatest potential to impact on economic growth and development. The overall increase over the medium-term period is R7,3 billion for the 2010-11 financial year, and R67 billion over the following three years.

 

With regard to amendments to the Division of Revenue Bill, the total allocation to national departments decreased by R7 billion; the allocation to provinces increased by R4,2 billion; and the allocation to local government increased by R0,4 billion. Furthermore, the further education and training college grant is the only grant that received an additional allocation during the 2010 adjustment period. Its allocation increased by R31,297 million.

 

With regard to Schedule 5 grants, the following new allocations and amendments were noted in respect of specific purpose grants to provinces. A sum of R50 million, which forms part of an agricultural disaster management grant, was allocated to the Western Cape province for expenses related to agricultural disasters such as drought. This grant is allocated as the need arises.

 

Furthermore, a sum of R214,398 million was allocated to KwaZulu-Natal for the rehabilitation of infrastructure destroyed by flooding. This forms part of the provincial infrastructure disaster relief grant, which is allocated as the need arises.

 

The comprehensive HIV/Aids grant increased by R40 million; the human settlement development grant increased by an amount of R15 million; and the devolution of property rates fund grant increased by R769,035 million.

 

With regard to Schedule 6 grants, the following amendments were noted in respect of specific purpose grants to municipalities. The water services operating subsidy grant increased by R8,399 million, and the municipal drought relief grant also increased by R92 million.

 

In accordance with Schedule 7 grants, the following amendments were noted in respect of allocations in kind to municipalities designated for special programmes. The integrated national electrification programme grant was adjusted downwards by R31,97 million, and the water services operating subsidy grant increased by R13,678 million.

 

Coming to public hearings, after considering the 2010 MTBPS and engaging extensively with the following stakeholders, the Financial and Fiscal Commission, the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, the SA Local Government Association, the Human Science Research Council and the People’s Budget Coalition, the Select Committee on Appropriations noted the following key concerns.

 

Firstly, government is cautioned against the potential negative effects resulting from its approach of focusing on targeted funding for poorer municipalities to the detriment of the middle-income municipalities.

 

Secondly, it was highlighted that the current practice that is used to determine the local equitable share is unconstitutional in respect of the revenue-raising component.

 

Thirdly, the availability of credible data on key variables relating to the socioeconomic, demographic and special profiles of municipalities needs to be addressed, not only to update the data underpinning the local government equitable share formula, but also to enable a more fundamental review of the structure of the formula itself.

 

Fourthly, concerns were raised regarding whether the proposed minor adjustments to the local government equitable share formula to allocate more funding to poorer municipalities are substantive enough to address institutional challenges such as the need to appoint skilled personnel to manage finances, the human resources service delivery function and core administrative functions.

 

Fifthly, government’s efforts to chart a new, inclusive growth path that serves as an agenda for collective action is applauded. However, government is required to provide more details on the proposed new growth path or economic policy direction of the country.

Sixthly, it was further highlighted that government, at the provincial level, seems to be spending more funds on the compensation of employees rather than on programmes.

 

Lastly, government is not doing well with respect to health spending and, therefore, the downward revision is justifiable.

 

After meeting and considering all these things, the committee recommended the following. Firstly, the overall expenditure of government at the end of the second quarter of each financial year needs to be at 50%. This will most likely lead to an improved quality of spending and reduce the level of unauthorised spending and fiscal dumping at the end of a financial year.

 

Secondly, the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs should consult government and other relevant stakeholders with respect to the proposed special vehicle unit to avoid duplication of government programmes.

 

Lastly, we recommend that the Department of Health should investigate reasons for the underspending of grants and discourage the tendency of returning funds to National Treasury as this works against the plans to transform our health institutions. We therefore move for the adoption of the report by this House. I thank you.

 

Debate concluded.

Question put: That the Report be adopted.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Report accordingly adopted in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

CONSIDERATION OF REPORT OF SELECT COMMITTEE ON FINANCE – MEDIUM-TERM BUDGET POLICY STATEMENT

 

Mr C J DE BEER: Chairperson and hon members, the Minister of Finance tabled the 2010 Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement, MTBPS, before Parliament on 27 October 2010 in terms of section 28 of the Public Finance Management Act, PFMA, and section 61 of the Money Bills Amendment Procedure and Related Matters Act.

 

The MTBPS describes the economic context in which the 2010 statement is tabled and the considerations that inform the Medium-Term Expenditure Framework for the 2011-14 financial years and its funding.

 

Fiscal policy guides government’s decisions on revenue, spending and borrowing. South Africa’s fiscal policy enables government to deliver on its developmental mandate by providing resources in a manner that is sustainable and that reinforces the stability of the economy. The Budget is a function of the economic growth that underpins the sustainable development goals of government.

 

The MTBPS has based its proposals on the assumptions of how the economy might perform globally and locally. South Africa is a role-player in the global economy, and what happens in the global economy affects us. We have experienced this since 2008.

 

In the last 16 years of democracy we have succeeded in perfecting our tools of analysis and therefore the MTBPS has become a reliable tool or resource of information upon which policy-makers and government departments develop their strategic plans. It is not, as the DA indicated in a debate on Friday, a dismal failure. Acknowledgement must be given to the Minister of Finance as well as the National Treasury.

 

We must remind ourselves of how the late Comrade Oliver Tambo outlined his vision for the postapartheid economy. He said: “Our starting point is what the economy should serve – the people.”

 

Like we did last week when we went to Phuthaditjhaba. That’s an excellent example.

 

The economic downturn has forced us to think better, to be more innovative and to act. South Africa managed to cushion the impact of the recession on its economy through a large expansion in the fiscal deficit, so as to protect and increase social spending and to invest in infrastructure.

 

It is important that the MTBPS should factor in the possibilities of unforeseen and unavoidable situations that might be beyond our control – as we have experienced in the 2009-10 financial year.

 

We need closer co-operation on economic thinking between the developed and the poor nations. We should support the proposal made by the G20 nations of moving towards stronger multilateral co-operation; focusing on structural reforms to sustain global demand; fostering job creation and increased growth potential; and realising the need to complement financial repair and regulatory reforms, as in the case of Germany.

 

Our approach should be underpinned by our understanding that globalisation is not about bridging the economic divide between developed and emerging markets. Big economies like that of the United States have resorted to currency depreciation by pumping billions of dollars into the market. This will have serious consequences for emerging economies such as South Africa.

 

The currency war debate is dominating the recovery path of the global economy. It is therefore important to focus internally on the value of the rand and exchange rates coupled with low inflation and a sluggish economic recovery.

 

It is important to note that the economies of countries such as Brazil and China, which are export-driven, have chosen to retain weak currencies to stimulate their economic growth, based not only on exports but on domestic demand and savings.

 

There is a need, in our case, to balance the external and domestic demand for the goods and services we produce. The 2010 MTBPS indicates that the net capital inflows to South Africa have risen strongly over the last two years, reaching 5,5% of GDP in the first half of 2010, as compared to 4,7% in 2009 as a whole.

 

The economic questions that require our attention are the following: What are the implications of retaining high interest rates as compared to developed and developing nations? What are the implications of short-term speculative capital inflows? Can a weaker currency improve domestic demand and productivity and what will its impact be on foreign reserves?

 

We must remind ourselves that our key priority is spending on infrastructure projects such as roads and stadiums, and social spending, particularly on health and education, so that these are also sustained. The creation of decent work and youth employment also remains a priority.

 

The current economic challenges cannot only be addressed by monetary policy alone. We must look at other possibilities that emerge from this crisis, and we must aim to improve our competitiveness and productivity, in order to stimulate our economy. We are all in this together. We have to focus on what needs to be done to improve the lives of our people. The MTBPS puts us on a new growth path that will propel economic growth from 6% to 7%.

 

The Select Committee on Finance had joint public hearings with the Standing Committee on Finance in the National Assembly on 10 and 11 November 2010, where stakeholders made their inputs on the MTBPS. The committee commended the Minister of Finance on the balanced approach that was followed in the 2010 MTBPS.

 

Having considered the 2010 MTBPS, the Select Committee on Finance recommends that the Minister of Finance should provide details to Parliament on how the National Treasury will supplement the proposed new growth path. These details are to form part of the 2011 national Budget.

 

The Minister of Finance must consider providing details on how the state plans to design and fund the much-needed universal health care system. This information may be included in the 2011 national Budget.

 

The Minister must provide more and updated details on how South Africa is dealing with an appreciating rand. This information is also to be included in the 2011 national Budget.

 

The Minister of Finance should provide the committee with details on proposals to address corruption in the public financial system, including any amendments to legislation.

 

The Minister of Finance should provide the committee with a progress report on the proposed wage subsidy, as promised in the March 2010 speech.

 

The Minister of Finance should provide the committee with further details on promoting small businesses in South Africa.

 

Chairperson, the Select Committee on Finance supports the 2010 MTBPS and calls on the NCOP to support it. Thank you. [Applause.]

 

Debate concluded.

 

Question put: That the Report be adopted.

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Report accordingly adopted in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

CONSIDERATION OF REPORT OF SELECT COMMITTEE ON FINANCE - AMENDMENTS TO SCHEDULES 1 AND 2 OF FINANCIAL INTELLIGENCE CENTRE ACT, ACT NO 38 OF 2001

 

Mr C J DE BEER: Chairperson, we submit this report to the House that the Select Committee on Finance, having considered and examined amendments to Schedule 1 of the Financial Intelligence Centre Act, Act 38 of 2001, and the amendments to Schedule 2 of the Financial Intelligence Centre Act 2001, recommends that the House, in terms of section 73(3) and section 75(3) of the Financial Intelligence Centre Act approves the said amendments. I so propose. [Applause.]

 

Debate concluded.

 

Question put: That the Report be adopted.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Report accordingly adopted in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

REGULATION OF INTERCEPTION OF COMMUNICATIONS AND PROVISION OF COMMUNICATION-RELATED INFORMATION AMENDMENT BILL

 

(Consideration of Bill and of Report thereon)

 

Mong T M H MOFOKENG: Modulasetulo, Molao wa Regulation of Interception of Communications Act, RICA, o laola, hara tse ding, ho fediswa ka molao ha kgakuretso ya dikgokahano ntle le ha e le ka molao, ho fana ka tlhahisoleseding e itseng e amanang le dikgokahano, le kgakuretso ya dikgokahano ho ya ka tumello ya moahlodi ya dutseng bakeng sa kopo ya kgakuretso.

 

Sekamolao se ka pele ho Lekgotla lena se habile ho hlomathisa karolo ya 62, karolwana ya botshelela ya molao, e le ho eketsa nako ya ho kwala ngodiso ka dikgwedi tse tsheletseng.

 

Sekamolao sena se hlomathisa dirapa tsa A le D tsa karolo ya 66 ya molao ka ho hlakola dintho tse buang ka nako ya dikgwedi tse 18, e fellang mohla letsatsi la 31 Tshitwe, dirapeng tsena mme ho kenngwe mohla la 30 Phupjane e le letsatsi le letjha la ho kwalwa ha ngodiso. Komiti, ka mora ho sekaseka tlaleho ena, e kopa hore Ntlo e e amohele. Ke a leboha. [Mahofi.] (Translation of Sesotho speech follows.)

[Mr T M H MOFOKENG: Chairperson, the Regulation of Interception of Communications Act, RICA, regulates, among other things, the interception of communications except when it is legal, the provision of certain information relating to communications, and a request for the interception of communications with the consent of a designated judge.

 

The Bill before the House is intended to put in place section 62(6) of the Act, to extend the time set for registration by six months.

 

The Bill puts in place paragraphs a and d of section 66 of the Act regarding the period of registration within 18 months, which ends on 31 December in these paragraphs, and to put 30 July as the new deadline for registration. After discussing this report, the committee requests the House to adopt it. Thank you.]

 

Debate concluded.

 

Bill agreed to in accordance with section 75 of the Constitution.

 

CONSIDERATION OF REQUEST FOR APPROVAL BY PARLIAMENT OF DRAFT NOTICE AND SCHEDULE DETERMINING RATE, WITH EFFECT FROM 1 APRIL 2010, AT WHICH SALARIES, ALLOWANCES AND BENEFITS ARE PAYABLE TO MAGISTRATES ANNUALLY

 

Mr A G MATILA: Deputy Chairperson, the select committee considered the annual recommendations of The Independent Commission for the Remuneration of Public Office Bearers and approval by the President of the Republic of South Africa of the 5% increase in salaries. The select committee considered the draft notice and schedule in terms of section 12(3) of the Magistrates Act, Act 90 of 1993. The select committee recommends that this House approves the increase. Thank you.

 

Debate concluded.

 

Question put: That the request be approved.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Request accordingly approved in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

CONSIDERATION OF REQUEST FOR APPROVAL BY PARLIAMENT OF DRAFT NOTICE AND SCHEDULE DETERMINING RATE, WITH EFFECT FROM 1 APRIL 2010, AT WHICH SALARIES, ALLOWANCES AND BENEFITS ARE PAYABLE TO CONSTITUTIONAL COURT JUDGES AND JUDGES ANNUALLY

 

Mr A G MATILA: Deputy Chairperson, the draft notice and schedule as approved by the President of the Republic of South Africa approves a 5% salary increase for Constitutional Court judges and judges.

 

The select committee approves the draft notice and schedule submitted in terms of section 2(4) of the Judges’ Remuneration and Conditions of Employment Act of 2001.

 

The committee recommends that this House approves the increase. Thank you.

 

Debate concluded.

 

Question put: That the request be approved.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Request accordingly approved in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

Consideration of report of select committee on security and constitutional development - provisional suspension from office of magistrate f r rambau

 

Consideration of report of select committee on security and constitutional development - provisional suspension from office of magistrate L Skrenya

 

Consideration of report of select committee on security and constitutional development - provisional suspension from office of magistrate I W O M Morake

 

Mr M H MOKGOBI: Chairperson, the reports of all the suspensions were tabled for the Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development in terms of the Magistrates Act, Act 90 of 1993.

 

Several allegations were noted and the select committee reports as follows. With regard to Magistrate I W O M Morake, the select committee recommends that the House endorses the provisional suspension from office. Regarding Magistrate F R Rambau, the select committee recommends that the House endorses the provisional suspension from office; and regarding Magistrate L Skrenya, the select committee recommends that the House endorses the provisional suspension from office. Thank you. [Applause.]

 

Debate concluded.

 

Question put: That Report on Provisional Suspension from Office of Magistrate F R Rambau be adopted.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Report on Provisional Suspension from Office of Magistrate F R Rambau accordingly adopted in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

Question put: That Report on Provisional Suspension from Office of Magistrate L Skrenya be adopted.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape. Mpumalanga did not vote.

 

Report on Provisional Suspension from Office of Magistrate L Skrenya accordingly adopted in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

Question put: That Report on Provisional Suspension from Office of Magistrate I W O M Morake be adopted.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Report on Provisional Suspension from Office of Magistrate I W O M Morake accordingly adopted in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

CONSIDERATION OF REPORT OF SELECT COMMITTEE ON SECURITY AND CONSTITUTIONAL DEVELOPMENT - SUSPENSION FROM OFFICE OF MAGISTRATE M N JASSIEM

 

CONSIDERATION OF REPORT OF SELECT COMMITTEE ON SECURITY AND CONSTITUTIONAL DEVELOPMENT - SUSPENSION FROM OFFICE OF MAGISTRATE A MAHARAJ

 

Mr M H MOKGOBI: Hon Chair, the Select Committee on Security and Constitutional Development considered the suspension from office of Magistrates Ms A Maharaj and Mr M N Jassiem and concurs with the Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development and recommends that Ms Maharaj and Mr Jassiem be removed from office. Thank you.

 

Debate concluded.

 

Question put: That Report on Suspension from Office of Magistrate M N Jassiem be adopted.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Report on Suspension from Office of Magistrate M N Jassiem accordingly adopted in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

Question put: That Report on Suspension from Office of Magistrate A Maharaj be adopted.

 

IN FAVOUR: Eastern Cape, Free State, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West, Western Cape.

 

Report on Suspension from Office of Magistrate A Maharaj accordingly adopted in accordance with section 65 of the Constitution.

 

FAREWELL SPEECHES

 

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Chairperson, I can see that everyone wants to go home and is very happy. I can see the happiness and I can read the mood.

 

Chairperson and hon members, as we bid one another farewell, this is also an important moment to reflect on the work we have done during the course of the year. As we conclude this year, we can highlight some of the achievements and indicate areas where we need to improve in the new year.

 

Firstly, through several initiatives we managed to put co-operative government and intergovernmental relations firmly on the agenda of the NCOP. Secondly, we have used the Provincial Week to facilitate and co-ordinate oversight and understand the challenges facing provinces.

 

However, we need to ensure that the Provincial Week and the Taking Parliament to the People programme talk to each other, especially for the following purposes. Interaction between the NCOP and the provinces has improved greatly. For example, for the first time we now get regular progress reports on section 139 interventions. I want to thank the committee for that; they are doing a good job. [Applause.]

 

The most recent reports we received this week were progress reports on interventions in the Sunday’s River Valley Local Municipality, the Kou-Kamma Local Municipality in the Eastern Cape and others. This is important because, as the House, we need to know if the interventions are working and also draw lessons for future actions.

 

Thirdly, judging by the thrust of the debates in this House, one notes that members share a common understanding of the role of the NCOP as a House that represents the interests of provinces and that has the responsibility to promote co-operation and co-ordination among the three spheres of government.

 

In March, and as recently as last week, we successfully hosted the Taking Parliament to the People programme in the Limpopo and Free State provinces respectively. What is important is that these were the first activities since we remodelled the programme to provide for more detailed planning and follow-up.

 

Although we have not yet gone back to check up on progress in the Greater Sekhukhune District Municipality, I am happy that work is going ahead amidst some challenges. For example, the plan to build a road and bridge at Mankele by 2010 to replace the makeshift “segwaigwai” [cable car] is said to be under way. Also, a bridge is being planned for the Olifants River.

 

The Mogale Wa Bagale Technical School has been put on the infrastructure priority list for the 2010-11 financial year and renovations of the Taung High School were expected to start two months ago.

 

Progress to create a structure to liaise with mines, the community and government is said to be under way and infrastructure development is being unlocked, especially at Atok Mine, where they are targeting 45 households.

 

However, we still need to see if the reports we continue to get are true reflections of the interventions being made. This must be our priority early next year. We need to go back there and do our work. We, and the committees particularly, need to do report-back visits there.

 

The configuration of the portfolios of House Chairpersons is beginning to show some positive impact with regard to the management of our work. Although much work still needs to be done to smooth some committee activities, I must commend our administration for beginning to provide more support to the programmes of the institution.

 

It is important that in rendering support the administration component is informed by the needs of members of this House and not by what the administration thinks members need. Therefore, we need to interact very closely with the members so that we can understand what their needs are in terms of the support they need.

 

The time has come for delegates to this House to return home for

their constituency work and for the end-of-the-year recess. I would like to remind them to remain vigilant during the constituency period by paying particular attention to how government is responding to the call to ensure that we prioritise, among other things, education, health, fighting poverty and creating job opportunities.

 

I wish to thank fellow presiding officers, the Whippery, the chairpersons of committees and officials for raising the banner of the NCOP even under difficult circumstances. As you have seen at the weekend, for the first time the Sunday Times devoted much space to commenting on our work.

 

While we do not necessarily agree with them - I agree with Mr Watson that they chose to project our work - it was clear that they appreciated the interventions we made. The more attention they pay to this House, the more they will realise our impact in achieving the medium- and long-term goals, chief among them being the bringing of democracy into action to the people in remote parts of the land as part of our contribution and nation-building.

 

We will keep on teaching these things until all the people understand how the NCOP functions and works. We should not tire of doing that.

 

It should be noted that the people and many role-players and stakeholders have expressed support for this programme, not least among these is the Presidency itself. I’m sure you heard the comment of the President on Friday endorsing this programme - that we should continue and that it is a wonderful programme.

 

I am looking forward to a well-deserved holiday after my last engagement in the second week of December. I wish you the same. May you come back refreshed next year to continue with the wonderful work you are doing for the institution. May God bless you as you go back home and enjoy your holidays with your kids. Thank you very much. [Applause.]

 

Mr A WATSON: Chairperson, it is indeed an honour to stand here again today, taking part in this debate on this topic for the seventh year in succession.

 

At a time like this, I would have loved to reflect on all of my colleagues, both the quiet and the rowdy ones, but I would not be able to do justice to all your unique characters in such a short speech. I would therefore urge you all to take the time that lies ahead and write a book about yourselves so that we can read and cry about you, or maybe read and laugh about you, at our own leisure.

 

Maybe I can reflect on just a few and ask Hon Toenka Matila to write a book which should definitely be titled Show me the way to Bloemfontein. Hon Lewis Nzimande should write a book on “How to get married twice in one month without considering a divorce! Hon Michael de Villiers can write a handbook on how to manage 10 motions in one sitting, while hon Willem Faber can pen his memoirs on “There is more to politics than just sport” or maybe “a sport” - I don’t know.

 

Not entirely politically correct, maybe, but hon Papi Tau must publish a book called A chip off the old block, or maybe it is A Chip off John Block, I don’t know. And the Chief Whip must undoubtedly write a psychology handbook on how to overcome a fear of Helen Zille.

 

I would ask the Chairperson to write an Afrikaans book Ek droom van ’n plaas met net my as baas [I dream of a farm with only myself as “baas”] while the Deputy Chairperson of this institution’s book must simply be titled Mama of the House. Hon Kenneth Sinclair’s book should be titled Getting the best out of all parties, and as for the commissioner sitting there, his biography should be titled From a general to a corporal in one short leap – I mean a “cope-peril” not a “corporal”! And of course hon Bloem must write a book on how to cope with two Copes within one Cope. [Laughter.]

 

In all sincerity, colleagues, I would like to reiterate what I said about our Chairperson last night and, once again, say thank you to him for his leadership. May he and other presiding officers enjoy a well-deserved rest.

 

We just hope that we will be able to see more of you next year because we have our work cut out for us, not only with regard to our duties as mandated by the Constitution, but also in building the image of the NCOP and establishing it in its rightful place as the upper House of Parliament, or, as I so often have said, as the national senate.

 

I have also said that our Chief Whip is one of the most difficult and unpredictable politicians to encounter. Although I enjoy political sword-crossing immensely, I must say here publicly that Nosipho Ntwanambi is a very good Chief Whip. Thank you for listening to suggestions, and particularly for always considering the interests of the members foremost.

 

I would also like to thank all the staff of the NCOP for all their friendly help and understanding at all times. While I cannot single out any one of them, I must also pay tribute to the Secretary of the NCOP, Adv Phindela. Thank you for guiding the administrative and operative ship of the Council, Mr Secretary, and congratulations once again on your official appointment.

 

I am sorry that I could not give you a review on all the books that you have to write, colleagues, but I can say that it has been a pleasure working and associating with all of you, be it from the ruling party or the opposition party or the best party. That one is important - the DA, if you didn’t realise what I meant.

 

When we started this term, most of my DA colleagues were newcomers to the NCOP. But we have since bid farewell to two of our members and now we have two more newcomers to the NCOP. So, one old hand along with me is hon Darryl Worth. Therefore, in welcoming the two new kids on the block, hon Theo Beyleveldt and hon Beverley Abrahams, to our DA team, I must once again say that my whole team has been a great one and has done a fantastic job. I thank you all.

 

May the Almighty Father hold and guide all of you always, and may that beautiful message of Christmas, a message of goodwill among all mankind, find its way into your hearts and all your homes.

 

And now, on a point of order, Chairperson: I thank you! [Applause.]

The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP (Ms T C Memela): Thank you very much, hon Watson, I’ll definitely write the book.

 

Mr D V BLOEM: Deputy Chairperson, you see, Mr Watson, there’s only one Cope and I am coping within that Cope.

 

Deputy Chairperson, thank you very much. This House is one House that is unique in the politics of South Africa. It brings together all three spheres of government - national, provincial and local governments - under one roof.

 

This House created a very important opportunity for me personally to meet and interact with people whom I had never met before. I want to single out some of the people that I worked with over the past year, namely the chairperson of the committee on Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Cogta, AK-47 or Mr Mokgobi; then Mr Matila, whose name is Hit-and-Run; and Mr Watson, or Rough-and-Tumble. I’ve worked with these people and they are very good.

 

Let me not forget to mention my old comrade friend, also from the Free State, the Chairperson of the Select Committee on Security and Constitutional Development, Mr T Mofokeng, one of the Terrible Twins of Bloemfontein. I have known this comrade for a very long time.

 

I must confess that since I’ve met and worked with these colleagues, I have learned a lot from them. I can say without any doubt that in these committees, Cogta and the Select Committee on Security and Constitutional Development, we are working as a solid unit. I must tell the Chairperson and the House that these two committees have very good leadership and I want to wish them luck.

 

Since the House is rising today, we are going to go our different ways. It is therefore time to say farewell to one another. I see that my time has run out, but I also want to thank the Chairperson of the Council, Mr Mahlangu, for his humour and help. He is always there to assist, help and give guidance.

 

To Mama here, I know that yesterday I was called to order but you’ll always stay a Mama to me. You are also very, very good and strict but are there to help us.

 

To everybody in the House, may I say happy Christmas and a very good new year.

 

Lastly, Mr Nzimande is getting married next month. And I am promising you that I will be there, singing ...

 

... tswang, tswang, tswang, le boneng, ngwana o tshwana le Lekhalate. [Setswana traditional song.]

 

Thank you. [Applause.]

 

Mr B A MNGUNI: Chairperson, hon members, colleagues and all staff members, William Shakespeare once wrote:

 

Farewell! God knows when we shall meet again.

 

It has been a long and tiring year. I hope those who came to Parliament thinking that it was always parties and endless dinners are now aware that all those niceties come with a lot of hard work.

 

When we look at the bigger picture, colleagues and friends, it is encouraging that we managed to tolerate and co-operate with one another for the good of the country and for a better life for all, irrespective of our colour, political affiliation or religion.

 

Ba re ntwa ke ya madulammoho. Sena se bolela hore re a lwana re le mekgatlo ya dipolotiki empa qetellong re bana ba thari e le nngwe, Afrika Borwa. (Translation of Sesotho paragraph follows.)

 

[They say fighting happens among people who live together. This means that even though we compete as political parties, at the end of the day we belong to one country, South Africa.]

 

We have had our differences but we did not let that deter us from our common objective, which is prosperity for the country. We might have been offended in whatever way as individuals or you might have been a thorn in the flesh of someone in the House, so this is the time to say let bygones be bygones, for it is the season of goodwill.

 

In the language of science they say, “Where there is friction, there is progress.” For any one of us to be able to take a step forward it is because of the friction between your feet and the surface.

 

Let us go back home to rest and have a jolly time with our loved ones. But let us go back to our depository of ideologies and wisdom so that we come back with our minds sharpened and ready to carve a better future for the country we’ve been entrusted with.

 

Wees versigtig op die paaie gedurende die vakansie. Ek weet dat baie lede jaagduiwels is! Onthou dat die agteros ook in die kraal kom. [Applous.] (Translation of Afrikaans paragraph follows.)

 

[Be careful on the roads during the holidays. I know that many members are speedsters! Remember that it’s better to arrive late than never. [Applause.]]

 

Mr J J GUNDA: Hon Deputy Chair, hon Chair, and hon members, indeed, let me start by saying that this was a good year.

 

The NCOP has once again proved that Taking Parliament to the People is of utmost importance in serving our people in order to show that this government cares for them. I would like to mention the example – as I said in Qwaqwa - of the hon Premier of the Free State, Ace Magashule, who assisted local artists to record his second CD, which proves that he cares for his people.

 

Let me just quote what Martin Luther King once said:

 

Everybody can be great, because anybody can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve... You don’t have to know about Plato and Aristotle to serve... You don’t have to know the second theory of thermodynamics in physics to serve. You only need a heart full of grace, a soul generated by love.

 

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela quoted in his inauguration speech in 1994:

 

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.

 

Let me conclude with the greatest man who ever walked in this earth, known by the name of Jesus. He said in Matthew 7:12:

 

So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the law and the prophets.

In conclusion, let me take this opportunity to say these few words to all members of this House, their families and the staff: Have a blessed, peaceful and wonderful Christmas and may God bless them and every one of you this festive season.

 

I also wish to thank every one of you for your assistance, especially the staff and Advocate Phindela, the Secretary. Have a prosperous 2011 and may God bless you. [Applause.]

 

UMntwana M M M ZULU: Phini likaSihlalo wale Ndlu, uSihlalo wale Ndlu kanye nozakwethu bonke, kulo nyaka esiwugoqayo namhlanje sisebenze kahle noma-ke kube khona izimpikiswano. Kodwa-ke izimpikiswano akumele zibe khona kule Ndlu ngoba simele izinhlaka zezifundazwe zakithi. Kufuneka sibheke ukuthi uhulumeni usebenza kanjani noma angasizwa kanjani kuwo wonke amaziko.

 

Ukukhula komqondo wethu ukuthi noma sisebenza njengomndeni emakomidini ethu, kuyaye kube khona lapho kuba sengathi sisebenza njengamaqembu ezombusazwe kanti iqiniso elibabayo lithi akufanele kube njalo. Kumele sisebenzele izidingo zabantu bakithi bonke ababecindezelwe.

 

Kubaba uMahlangu ngithi utshengise lobo buholi kimi, njengomfana osemncane, osuka esifundazweni sakwaZulu ozalwa nguMaqhawe. Nokho salwa thina ukuba uhole le Ndlu ngobuqotho ubambisene nephini lakho, uSotswebhu Omkhulu wale Ndlu, benisebenza ukuze nitshengise ukuthi indlela iqhutshwa kanjani.

 

Ngiyazi ukuthi alikho isoka elingenasici ngoba wonke umuntu uba nesici sakhe empilweni angahle agxekwe ngaso. Ukugxekwa kufanele nikuvumele uma benigxeka, kanjalo nami nginigxeke uma kukhona lapho ninamaphutha khona. Kunobhala wale Ndlu, mnawami usebenze ngokwethembeka noma ubumncane ngoba ngangithi ufakiwe uma ngikhuluma nawe nabasebenzi bakho bonke. Kulokho kufakwa kwakho utshengisile ukuthi akukho lapho obutshengisa khona ukwenzelela ngokusobala noma kuphi. Kufanele nibambisane njengezakhamizi zaleli lizwe, nisebenze ngokwethembeka.

 

Nokuthathwa kwePhalamende lisiwa kubantu ngakolunye uhlangothi ngiye ngikubuke njengokumosa izimali zezifundazwe, kodwa kule Ndlu yilapho ngibone kahle ukuthi kufike kubonakala kahle ukuthi yini entulwa ngabantu bakithi. Kubuyiswe bonke labo Ngqongqoshe, nezikhulu zizokusho ukuthi yini ezingayenza ukusiza laba bantu.

 

Ngithi uNkulunkulu anibusise nomqalajuba liyabaleka iwombe kithi wasoShangane, ingcungcu ephuza kwezimbi iziziba. Sengathi inganibheka nawo wonke amakhosi esizwe abaPedi, amaXhosa, abeSotho kanye namaSwati, ukuba nikwazi ukusebenza kahle nibuye futhi nisaphelele ngonyaka ozayo. [Ihlombe.] (Translation of isiZulu speech follows.)

 

[Prince M M M ZULU: Deputy Chairperson of this House, Chairperson of this House and all our colleagues, we worked well in this current year that we are finalising, even though there were some arguments. But then arguments should not take place in this House because we are all representing certain structures in our provinces. We must see how the government operates, or how the government could be assisted in all the departments.

 

Our development of our thinking is that we work as a family when we are in the committees. There are instances when we work as political parties, whereas the bitter truth is that this should not be the case. We must work for the needs of all the people who were oppressed.

 

Mr Mahlangu, you showed leadership to me as a young man, who comes from the province of KwaZulu-Natal, the son of Maqhawe. Nevertheless, we fought in order for you to lead this House with honesty together with your deputy, the Chief Whip of this House, who led by example.

 

I know that no one is perfect because every person has some shortcomings which he or she is criticised for in life. You must accept criticism, and you must also criticise me where I have made mistakes. To the Secretary: My colleague, you have worked with loyalty although you are young. I thought you were deployed here together with all your workers. In your deployment you showed no bias whatsoever. We must work together as the citizens of this country, and work with loyalty.

 

On the other hand, I view the Taking Parliament to the People programme as a waste of the provinces’ money, but in this House I clearly see what is needed by our people. Bring all the Ministers and the officials to tell us what they could do to help these people.

 

May God bless you. Nomqalajuba liyabaleka ihobhe kithi kwaSoshangane, ingcungcu ephuza kwezimbi iziziba. [Praise song.] May the Lord keep you and all the kings of these nations, namely the Pedi, Xhosa, Sotho as well as the Swazis, so that you are able to work well and still be available next year. Thank you.]

 

The CHIEF WHIP OF THE NCOP: Deputy Chair, let me first thank the Chairperson of the Council, without whom all of us here wouldn’t be able to work. He tried every possible means to make sure that as Members of Parliament and as parties we all agreed. Sometimes I disagreed with Mr Watson, he would plead with me saying, “Leave that”.  You know how difficult I am, Mr Watson, as you yourself have said.

 

Deputy Chair, today marks the last day of session of our Council in the second year of our fourth democratic Parliament. We are aware that this year was a very momentous one; it was one of the busiest for our hon members and select committees. It was also a year in which we have seen the expansion of our select committees from 11 to 13 since the third democratic Parliament.

 

We have also seen the involvement of our hon members in various statutory bodies and commissions, as well as continental and global institutions and structures. We are indeed proud and we would like to sincerely thank our hon members for doing their work in great strides and for showing their commitment to advancing the lives of our people. But I must also say that I have noted those who really do not attend to parliamentary work. I know who they are and maybe very soon we will name and shame them.

 

This year we had more motions passed than in any other year of the Council, more committee meetings were held and we undertook a very successful Provincial Week and two Taking Parliament to the People programmes.

 

We have seen many Bills being passed by the NCOP. More questions were asked and we witnessed our select committees taking on issues that affect the daily lives of our people – a true indication of the dedication and hard work of our hon members.

 

We are indeed humbled by the fact that many of our hon members are heeding our call to build an activist Parliament that proactively responds to the challenges facing our people.

As the NCOP, we have taken the call to build an activist Parliament very seriously. We say this because we are aware that the NCOP has specific functions with regard to building a better South Africa. Our work must give voice to the perspectives of the country’s nine provinces and provide a platform for local government to participate in legislative deliberations. This provides Parliament with a mechanism to ensure that a centralised, national government perspective does not dominate the development of legislation that needs to serve the diverse needs of the country as a whole.

 

As the Whippery, we hosted a very successful workshop where the leadership of the NCOP and provinces convened to look at better ways of enhancing our collective responsibility in the implementation of the mandate of the NCOP.

 

I also want to say that I am humbled by the support, co-operation and understanding of all political parties. It is not easy to work with Mr Watson, but I must also say I won his heart and I know very well that his wife should be careful lest I overtake her! [Laughter.]

 

The most important role of the NCOP in the evolution of our young nation is reflected in the advances that our Council is making in the deepening of our democratic systems and ensuring that more people, especially those in our provinces, become involved in our parliamentary processes. Our committees have visited various communities and conducted oversight over many issues that are imperative to our commitment to ensure a better life for our people.

 

We are also grateful for the participation of the various political parties in putting the needs of our people first and making sure that we continue to work together despite some of the political differences that we have.

 

Our Council hosted delegations and dignitaries from many parts of the world, who are drawn by its uniqueness. We recently hosted a delegation from Namibia, which came to learn about the unique way in which the NCOP carries out its mandate. We were humbled by the feedback that they gave us on their last day.

 

Chairperson, I know that while we have come to the last sitting day of the Council for the year, many of our hon members, as the servants of our people, will be hard at work in their constituencies. Your outstanding work and dedication demonstrate your courage to work tirelessly for our people, who have been ravaged by centuries of apartheid underdevelopment and systemic exclusion.

 

The week marks the beginning of the 16 Days of Activism against gender-based violence and, of course, violence towards girl-children in particular. We must all join the various activities organised in our communities, make a call on our communities to speak out and stand up and commit them and ourselves to preventing violence against women and children in our communities. We must encourage themselves not to look away but to act and speak out against violence and abuse of women and children.

 

As we continue to communicate the message of hope to our people, we must take the opportunity to rest, recuperate and re-energise our rigour and determination to be the servants of our people.

 

Allow me to pass on our profound appreciation to our staff members for their tireless efforts to support us in their work. But I will be failing and dishonest if I don’t specifically thank the two ladies and the gentleman who work with me directly in my office.

 

As we depart from the precincts of Parliament and drive to our various destinations, let us be safe and continue to preach the gospel of safety on our roads. As the Irish blessing and farewell toast says:

 

May the road rise up to meet you ... May the sun shine warm upon your face, and rains fall soft upon your fields. And until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of his hand.

 

I wish everyone a happy Christmas and a year full of successes. I thank you, Chair. [Applause.]

 

The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP (Ms T C Memela): Thank you very much. May I make one announcement? Could all the hon members make themselves available for a photograph just outside here?

 

The Council adjourned at 12:27.

__________

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS, TABLINGS AND COMMITTEE REPORTS

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

National Assembly and National Council of Provinces

 

The Speaker and the Chairperson

1.       Bills passed by Houses – to be submitted to President for assent

 

  1. Bills passed by National Council of Provinces on 24 November 2010:

 

  1. Higher Education Laws Amendment Bill [B 24B – 2010] (National Assembly – sec 75).

 

  1. Skills Development Levies Amendment Bill [B 25 – 2010] (National Assembly – sec 75).

 

  1. Higher Education and Training Laws Amendment Bill [B 26B – 2010] (National Assembly – sec 76(1)).

 

  1. Adjustments Appropriation Bill [B 34 – 2010] (National Assembly – sec 77).

 

  1. Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provision of Communication-related Information Amendment Bill [B 37 – 2010] (National Assembly – sec 75).

 

2.      Classification of Bills by Joint Tagging Mechanism (JTM)

 

(1)      The JTM in terms of Joint Rule 160(6) classified the following Bills as section 75 Bills:

 

  1. Companies Amendment Bill [B 40 – 2010] (National Assembly – sec 75).

 

  1. Correctional Matters Amendment Bill [B 41 – 2010] (National Assembly – sec 75).