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17 June 2020 - NW1044

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Tarabella - Marchesi, Ms NI to ask the Minister of Basic Education

(1)       Whether, with reference to her reply to question 102 on 13 February 2020, (a) a timeframe has been set for the 2020 collection of national dataset to be completed; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details; (2) whether her department has any plans to get schools to reinstate Mathematics as one of the subjects to be offered; if not, what plans are in place to increase the number of learners taking Mathematics as a subject; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

Response to Parliamentary question 1044

(1) 

EMIS data is captured at source level (schools) on the transactional system called the South African School Administration and Management System (SA-SAMS) and uploaded to the National Data Repository called the Learner Unit Record Information and Management System (LURITS) from which statistical reporting takes place. The LURITS has built-in validation rules to verify data. This system was opened on 23 March 2020 for processing of the 2020 Enrolment Upload by the Provincial Education Departments and the initial closing date of LURITS uploads was planned for 30 June 2020. This date was reviewed to close LURITS on 12 June 2020 for 2020 Enrolment data in response to the growing need of updated data.  There is a further verification exercise and process of approval from the Provincial Heads of Departments, prior to finalization of the data for reporting purposes. The 2020 data will therefore be finalised by end July 2020 for reporting.

2)

To increase learner participation and performance in the MST subjects, the Department of Basic Education (DBE) has developed an Integrated Mathematics, Science and Technology (MST) Strategy (2019-2030), in close collaboration with sister departments namely Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) and Department of Science and Innovation (DSI) and  Various  directives from the Director-General regarding the mandatory offering, by all Public Ordinary Schools, of Mathematics or Technical Mathematics in Technical High Schools.

This was issued in Circular S13 of 2015, entitled, “THE MANDATORY OFFERING OF MATHEMATICS AS A CHOICE SUBJECT IN ALL SECONDARY SCHOOLS FOR THE COMPLETION OF THE NATIONAL SENIOR CERTIFICATE(NSC)”. .

Since then, Circular S15 of 2015, Circular S1 of 2016 and Circular S6 of 2016 were issued regarding the implementation of Technical subjects including Technical Mathematics and Technical Science. The purpose of these directives was to reiterate the policy requirement of ensuring that all NSC pupils taking Technical subjects were to offer Technical Mathematics, not Mathematical Literacy. In addition, the policy precludes NSC candidates from offering Mathematical Literacy in conjunction with Physical Science.

Interventions of the DBE include directed funding support to 1000 schools, provided to all Provincial Education Departments (PEDs), via the MST Conditional Grant which also specifically aims at supporting PED’s programmes that will increase the number of girls who take MST subjects.

To address the challenge posed by schools that are unable to recruit Mathematics teachers, the DBE, in 2016 concluded a MoU with TEACHSA.

This Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) recruits and trains recently graduated young men and women, termed TEACHSA Ambassadors, with MST-related degrees, who are then placed in ‘difficult to staff’ schools.

Since 2015, 289 TEACH Ambassadors have served school communities throughout the country. Their contributions have resulted in measurable increases in pupil enrolment as well as improving quality of outcomes. The work done by them has been recognised for its excellence, as evidenced by their receipt of accolades in the National Teacher Awards.

17 June 2020 - NW1084

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King, Ms C to ask the Minister of Basic Education

(a) What are the relevant details of the special arrangements that will be made to reopen schools for children with special needs and (b) by what date will the specified schools be opened?

Reply:

(a) Details on the arrangements for the reopening of schools for children with special educational needs are encapsulated in the Directions that were published in the Government Notice signed by the Minister on 1 June 2020 as well as in the Department of Basic Education’s Standard Operating Procedures (SOP).

(b) The dates and other details are contained in the afore-mentioned Government Notice.

17 June 2020 - NW596

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Ngwenya, Ms DB to ask the Minister of Social Development

Whether, in view of the fact that an attempt to move social grant payments to different dates did not work, her department has considered going back to the previous normal dates and put practical measures around hygiene in place to assist grant recipients at pay points?

Reply:

The measure implemented to limit the numbers of beneficiaries who try to access their grants on the day the money becomes available will not be reversed and the payment dates agreed with National Treasury for the remainder of the financial year will stand. This means that SASSA will continue with the split payment files as it is believed that the numbers would have been significantly higher had this split not been done.

The measures which will be implemented to try and manage the numbers of beneficiaries who access their social grants are as follows:

  • The grant payments will continue in accordance with the dates as agreed with National Treasury (namely 3rd of each month for older persons and persons with disabilities and 5th of each month for all child grants – except where the 3rd and 5th respectively fall on a weekend or public holiday, in which case that specific date will be moved forward to the next working day after the 3rd or the 5th)
  • Further splitting of the file between the older persons and persons with disabilities is being considered for the July payment cycle. (This cannot be done in June, as we are still finalising the development for the payment of the care givers grants as well as the special relief grant)
  • Every beneficiary has their grant paid into a bank account – regardless of whether the account is with their personal bank or the SASSA/SAPO card account. Communication to advise beneficiaries of the fact that their card is a bank account and can be used as a debit card to swipe to pay for purchases and that there is no need to withdraw cash will be strengthened. The communication will also emphasize the fact that, once the grant is paid into the account, it will not be taken back if not utilised immediately.
  • SASSA is negotiating with the banking sector to introduce additional mobile banking ATMs in rural areas in an effort to limit the numbers of beneficiaries who have to travel to towns to access their money. However, issues such as the availability of the infrastructure and security still have to be finalised.
  • SASSA is also engaging the retail sector to see how they can assist. However, it should be understood that the banking and retail sector are not SASSA pay points – they are access channels through which beneficiaries and all other South Africans transact. All retailers have been implementing the relevant hygiene protocols in their stores, and have also dedicated additional till points specifically for older persons on the first few days of grant payments, in an effort to manage the numbers of beneficiaries. The challenge remains outside the stores, in malls and other points which is extremely difficult to control.
  • SASSA is working with other stakeholders, including local authorities, to ensure that there are marshals at the busier access points to help with queue management and the maintenance of social distancing while waiting to access the retail outlets, bank ATMS and post office premises.
  • In the Eastern Cape, negotiations have been undertaken with SAPO for them to utilise community halls to distribute the cash from, rather than some of their post offices which were not designed to cater for large number of beneficiaries. These community halls are used as extensions of the post office over the counter service and has really assisted to reduce the queues outside the facilities.
  • Eastern Cape has also identified specific communities where there is a concentration of infections and arranged for SAPO to go to these areas, to prevent the beneficiaries from going into the towns – supporting the need to self-quarantine
  • SASSA will continue to service the 1 740 cash pay points in the rural areas. At these pay points, hygiene protocols and social distancing is managed directly by SASSA and challenges have not been experienced.

An appeal is made to all in leadership positions to support SASSA in trying to limit the numbers of beneficiaries who go to the various access channels to access their grants.

17 June 2020 - NW974

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Masango, Ms B to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)What is the breakdown of the costs incurred by Government through the SA Social Security Agency for (a) procuring and (b) having the system operational to receive applications for social relief grant; (2) whether a new system was developed to process payments for the special social relief grant; if not, what is the position in this regard, if so, what is the breakdown of the costs involved; (3) what (a) business is a certain company (name furnished) doing with her department and (b) are the details of the costs involved in all business deals concluded with the specified company; (4) what are the reasons that her department decided to have a different WhatsApp number for applications which is now 082 046 8553, rather than continuing with the previous number used for the trial of the social relief grant applications? NW1263E

Reply:

1. The costs in terms of procurement to have the system operation are:

(a) The USSD application platform was procured through the National Treasury RT 15 Transversal Contract with an estimated usage value of R15m.

SASSA has used an existing contract and service provider, Prosense Technology, to leverage and expand on existing capabilities to create and effect payments. The same contractor also effected the development of a website to receive applications and for the secure upload of banking details for the special Covid 19 SRD grant. This also included the building of Applications Programme Interface (APIs) to interface with other government datasets for the purposes of validation. It also includes API’s and other interface mechanisms to do account verification and payments. The services was procured through the variation of this existing contract with Prosense Technologies to the value of R2.9 million which includes the development work as well as monthly support and maintenance of the environment till 31 March 2021.

(b) No other costs were incurred to have the system operational to receive applications.

2. SASSA has used an existing contract and service provider, Prosense Technology, to leverage and expand on existing capabilities to create and effect payments. The same contractor also effected the development of a website to receive applications and for the secure upload of banking details for the special Covid 19 SRD grant. This also included the building of Applications Programme Interface (APIs) to interface with other government datasets for the purposes of validation. It also includes API’s and other interface mechanisms to do account verification and payments. The services was procured through the variation of this existing contract with Prosense Technologies to the value of R2 967 000.00 which includes the development work as well as monthly support and maintenance of the environment till 31 March 2021.

3. SASSA has no contract with the company Capital Appreciation and therefor there is also no costs involved.

4. The initial number was used for test/pilot purposes. It became apparent that the anticipated numbers of applications would burden and overwhelm the Covid 19 Department of Health WhatsApp Hotline. SASSA was advised to apply for its own WhatsApp line which would have taken anything between 6 weeks and possibly several months to obtain. SASSA was then offered a free WhatsApp platform by GovChat.

17 June 2020 - NW1033

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De Freitas, Mr MS to ask the Minister of Tourism

With reference to the duties of the National Registrar of Tourist Guides, (a) what number of tourist guides were registered on the central database in each province in each month (aa) in each of the past three financial years and (bb) since 1 April 2020 and (b) what (i) number of tourist guides had their applications for registration rejected in the specified period in each province in each month and (ii) were the reasons for rejecting the applications in each case?

Reply:

(aa) 2017/2018

These figures show the total number of registered guides per province for the 2017/18 financial year.

PROVINCE

AFRICAN

COLOURED

INDIAN

WHITE

TOTAL

 

Male

Female

Male

Female

Male

Female

Male

Female

Male

Female

1. Gauteng

610

284

14

6

12

7

1357

1193

1993

1490

2. Limpopo

244

47

0

0

2

0

572

169

818

216

3. North West

80

3

1

0

0

0

116

24

197

27

4. Mpumalanga

758

109

5

0

5

1

1126

300

1894

410

5. Northern Cape

22

22

32

27

0

1

83

52

137

101

6. Free State

26

22

0

0

0

0

20

9

46

31

7. Eastern Cape

218

103

60

19

0

1

454

181

732

304

8. KwaZulu- Natal

191

66

1

2

2

3

249

87

443

158

9. Western Cape

332

76

685

255

32

16

1414

945

2463

1292

Sub Total

2481

732

798

309

53

29

5391

2960

8723

4029

Grand Total

3213

1107

82

8351

12752

4402 Blacks

8351 Whites

 

(aa)2018/2019

These figures show the total number of registered guides per province for the 2018/19 financial year

PROVINCE

AFRICAN

COLOURED

INDIAN

WHITE

TOTAL

 

Male

Female

Male

Female

Male

Female

Male

Female

Male

Female

1. Gauteng

614

287

14

6

12

7

1370

1197

2010

1497

2. Limpopo

244

47

0

0

2

0

572

169

818

216

3. North West

83

4

1

0

0

0

125

25

209

29

4. Mpumalanga

787

116

7

0

5

1

1152

302

1951

419

5. Northern Cape

25

23

36

33

0

1

91

60

152

117

6. Free State

26

22

0

0

0

0

23

10

49

32

7. Eastern Cape

218

103

60

19

0

1

454

181

732

304

8. KwaZulu- Natal

204

67

1

2

3

3

261

89

469

161

9. Western Cape

372

109

766

291

34

17

1528

997

2700

1414

Sub Total

2573

778

885

351

56

30

5576

3030

9090

4189

Grand Total

3351

1236

86

8606

13279

4673 Blacks

8606 Whites

 

(aa)2019/2020

Based on what was reported by Provincial Registrars in the last financial year, these figures show the number of new tourist guides registered monthly per province for the 2019/20 financial year.

PROVINCE

Quarter 1

Quarter 2

Quarter 3

Quarter 4

TOTAL

 

APR

MAY

JUN

JUL

AUG

SEP

OCT

NOV

DEC

JAN

FEB

MAR

ANNUAL

Limpopo

14

17

29

18

16

10

10

10

4

29

17

5

179

Mpumalanga

22

18

4

9

19

8

10

8

4

9

17

5

133

Gauteng

47

7

8

20

14

9

25

5

12

13

5

1

166

KwaZulu-Natal

5

14

8

7

14

15

18

3

5

9

54

6

158

North West

9

1

2

3

1

2

1

2

0

6

0

0

27

Eastern Cape

3

0

14

21

9

3

9

12

2

9

4

3

89

Western Cape

76

56

56

65

62

45

93

46

28

25

64

46

662

Northern Cape

0

0

0

0

1

0

10

0

0

0

0

0

11

Free State

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

7

0

0

4

0

11

MONTHLY SUB - TOTALS

176

113

121

143

136

92

176

93

55

100

171

66

 

QUARTERLY TOTALS

410

371

324

331

1436

(bb)2020/2021

Due to the Covid-19 lockdown, no new tourist guide registrations were processed between 01 April 2020 – 01 June 2020.

(b) (i) and (ii)

The Department does not maintain records in this regard. Those who feel aggrieved by the decisions taken by the Provincial Registrars are entitled to lodge appeals with the National Registrar as outlined in PQ 1034.

15 June 2020 - NW1013

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Steyn, Ms A to ask the Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development

Whether she received comments against some of the proposed animals that will be included under section 1(2) of the Meat Safety Act, Act 40 of 2000; if so, (a) what number of comments were received, (b) what number of comments were against the inclusion of some of these animals and (c) by what date will the final list be available?

Reply:

Yes.

(a) The Department has to date received almost 30 000 comments on the draft amendment to schedule 1 of the Meat Safety Act, 2000 (Act No. 40 of 2000).

(b) The analysis of the comments has not begun as the deadline for the comments was extended from the 30th April 2020 to the 30th June 2020 due to interruptions in communications and ability of citizens to respond due the COVID-19 lockdown.

(c) The final list will be compiled with effect from 01 July 2020 and after having looked at the comments made and consulted with relevant stakeholders.

15 June 2020 - NW541

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Powell, Ms EL to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

(1)What is the detailed list of all tenders awarded through the utilisation of drought-related funding transferred to municipalities across the Republic by her Department of Water and Sanitation since 1 January 2017; (2) (a) whether she will provide a list of which of the abovementioned tenders that were issued by municipalities in relation to water services, utilising funds transferred for the purposes of drought relief were awarded by means of a deviation from the (i) Public Finance Management Act, Act 1 of 1999, and/or (ii) Municipal Finance Management Act, Act 56 of 2003, and (b) what are the relevant details of the (i) deviations respectively and (ii) related tenders and/or contracts; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

1. The Department of Water and Sanitation is unable to provide the detailed list of tenders and how these were awarded by different municipalities as this responsibility is the mandate of municipalities to whom the funds have been transferred in terms of the Water Services Infrastructure Grant (WSIG). My department has the list of municipalities that benefited from the drought relief funds per province and it is appended as Annexure A.

2. Procurement was undertaken by the municipalities which benefited from the drought funding, therefore, the information relating to tenders should be sourced from the municipalities through the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs.

15 June 2020 - NW1041

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Gondwe, Dr M to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

What progress has her department made in (a) developing a policy framework on social and rental interventions and (b) the establishment of a Human Settlements Bank?

Reply:

(a) The Department of Human Settlements in collaboration with the Social Housing Regulatory Authority (SHRA) commenced with a process to develop a policy framework on rental and social housing interventions as guided by the National Rental Housing Act (1999), the Social Housing Act (2008) and the Rental Amendment Act of (2014).

This work is aimed at addressing all other forms of rental such as backyard, private rental, large and small scale rental.

It is anticipated that the final draft of the policy framework will be concluded during the 2020/21 financial year after conducting a Socio-Economic Impact Assessment System (SEIAS) via the Department of Planning Monitoring and Evaluation (DPME).

(b) The operating business model of the Human Settlements Development Bank (HSDB) has already been concluded and approved by National Treasury.

The consolidation of National Urban Reconstruction and Housing Agency (NURCHA) and the Rural Housing Loan Fund (RHLF) into the National Housing Finance Corporation (NHFC) was finalized in October 2018, following the formal approval of the merger by MinMEC and National Treasury.

The Human Settlements Development Bank Bill is amongst the apex priorities of the Departmental 2020 Legislative Program that has been submitted to office of the Leader of Government Business.

The Office of the State Law Advisor has already been consulted on the contents of the draft HSDB Bill and a process is underway to incorporate the comments received for consideration by Cabinet. Once Cabinet approve the Bill, the next step would be to table it in Parliament for processing.

15 June 2020 - NW153

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Kohler-Barnard, Ms D to ask the Minister of State Security

With reference to the most recent break-in at the offices of the State Security Agency (SSA), what (a) number of instances of ((i) theft and (ii) fraud occurred at the SSA offices over the past 10 years and (b) is the estimated accumulated value of the specified instances; (2) Whether the cases were reported to the (a) SA Police Service and (b) Inspector General of Intelligence; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details in each case; (3) What (a) number of (i) arrests and (ii) prosecutions have taken place and (b) total amount has been recovered?

Reply:

The Honourable Member is kindly referred to the Parliament Joint Standing Committee on Intelligence (JSCI) where a reply to this Parliamentary Question has been logged.

15 June 2020 - NW540

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Powell, Ms EL to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

Can she provide a list of the total amounts of drought-related funding pledged in each municipality in each province since 1 January 2017?

Reply:

Drought Relief funding is allocated by National Treasury through the Department of Water and Sanitation in accordance with the Division of Revenue Act. The funding is then transferred to provinces and municipalities. The total amounts transferred during the 2018/19 financial year are provided in Annexure A.

 

15 June 2020 - NW653

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Van Minnen, Ms BM to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

(a) Who are currently the SA Delegates to the Lesotho Highlands Water Commission, (b) what number of vacancies exist in the Commission, (c) what has been the period for which these vacancies existed and (d) what steps has she taken to fill the vacancies?

Reply:

(a) The posts occupied by South Africa’s Delegation to the Lesotho Highlands Water Commission are as follows:

  • Chief Delegate, in an acting capacity
  • Permanent Representative
  • Delegate: Executive for Project Management and Implementation
  • Three Alternate Delegates

Unfortunately, I am constrained and prohibited by the document titled “Guide to Parliamentary Questions in the National Assembly” from providing the Honourable Member with the names of the SA Delegates to the Lesotho Highlands Water Commission. The document referred to states that:

Questions are to be framed as concisely as possible. All unnecessary adjectives, references and quotations are omitted. Names of persons, bodies and, for example, newspapers are only used in questions if the facts surrounding the case have been proven. As the mere mention of such names could be construed as publicity for or against them, it should be clear that this practice is highly undesirable. If a question will be unintelligible without mentioning such names, the Departments concerned are notified of the name (-s) and this phrase is used: ".......a certain person (name furnished)”

(b) The post of the Chief Delegate in the Commission is vacant.

(c) The Chief Delegate’s post has been vacant since 19 May 2019.

(d) The vacant post was advertised on 12 January 2020 and the process of filling the post is well underway.

15 June 2020 - NW580

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Komane, Ms RN to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

What measures has she put in place to ensure that persons in (a) Mothutlong in Madibeng and (b) Karee in Rustenburg receive water during the lockdown to curb the spread of COVID-19?

Reply:

(a) I have been informed that in Mothutlung village, 2 X2 500 litres and 10X5 000 litres water tanks have been delivered and installed. A further 3X10 000 litre water tankers (trucks) have been deployed to assist with water provision during our Covid-19 intervention. The community is currently benefiting from these interventions.

(b) The Karee informal settlement is part of the areas where the Rustenburg Local Municipality (LM) has placed a total of 3X5 000 litre water tanks. The Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS), through the Covid-19 integrated intervention is supplying water through water tankers. As part of the medium term intervention, the municipality is planning to connect the Karee informal settlement to the Rand Water line that is serving the Marikana community and the mine.

The Rustenburg Local Municipality is monitoring the supply of water to informal settlements. The municipality has been allocated 2 additional tanker trucks through my department and Magalies Water Board in order to meet the current water demand and to ensure that communities have access to water at all times.

15 June 2020 - NW656

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Powell, Ms EL to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

(1)What has she found to be the reasons that according to the annual reports of the Estate Agency Affairs Board for 2018 and 2019 the number of estate agents has increased by around 5% whereas the number of estate agencies decreased by about 9%; (2) whether she has found that, in view of the fact that the establishment and growth of small businesses are crucial to the economy, compliance issues and registration/audit challenges are preventing smaller firms from succeeding; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

(1) The reasons for the increase in the number of estate agents from 22 000 in 2018 to 25 000 in the 2019 financial year is mainly attributed to the implementation of the One Learner, One Estate Agency Youth Brigade Programme, which is funded by the Services Sector Education and Training Authority (SETA). This is a programme that the Honourable Member should be familiar with having been on this portfolio for a year now and it is our response to the racially skewed nature of the industry.

The decrease in estate agency firms is due to a variety of reasons, among them being the market conditions in the property sector, the inaccessibility of markets by the smaller estate agencies and the non-compliance with the legislated requirements such as the submission of audited annual reports.

(2) There is no evidence that regulatory compliance prevents small firms from succeeding.  It would be helpful if any available report in this regard could be provided to the department.  The success of any business is informed by many factors some of which are non-regulatory.  Market conditions alone account for many of the basis for the failure of businesses of any size.  In the real estate sector for example, customer preferences are important. Many consumers view homeownership together with work mobility. This influences whether a consumer purchases or rents a home. In light of this, a proper market study can assist all of us so that we understand better the trends in our country.

15 June 2020 - NW1042

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Gondwe, Dr M to ask the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans

(1)Whether the military intelligence has found that there is potential for the increasing Islamic insurgent activities currently taking place in Northern Mozambique to spread to neighbouring Southern African Development Community states; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, (2) does the SA National Defence Force have a contingency plan in response to the potential spread into the Republic of the increasing insurgent activities currently taking place in Northern Mozambique; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the further relevant details?

Reply:

1. Defence Intelligence can confirm that there is an increase of Islamic insurgency activities currently in the province of Cabo Delgado, Mozambique and these has the potential to spread to other provinces and neighbouring Southern African Development Community (SADC) states.

2. As the Islamic insurgency activities may affect some SADC states, the regional political and military approach has been recommended and to this effect plans are in place to discuss and concretize the approach.

12 June 2020 - NW1022

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Hunsinger, Mr CH to ask the Minister of Transport

Whether the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) failed to pay R23 million towards retirement fund benefits; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what is the (a) current situation and (b) solution for this?

Reply:

1. PRASA confirms that it has failed to pay R23 million towards the Transnet Retirement Fund (the Fund) benefits.

(a) The February and March 2020 membership contributions to the Fund is currently outstanding and engagements with the Fund are ongoing to agree on a payment plan to settle the outstanding amount without any risk to employee benefits.

(b) PRASA has written a letter to the Administrators of the Fund informing them of its current cash flow challenges. PRASA is yet to meet with the Administrators in order to discuss a payment plan of the outstanding amounts.

12 June 2020 - NW684

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Waters, Mr M to ask the Minister of Transport

(1)What number of passenger trains (a) are operating between (i) Germiston and Pretoria, (ii) Springs and Dunswart and (iii) Daveyton and Dunswart and (b) should be operating on the specified routes; (2) what are the reasons that only one train can operate at a time between Germiston and Elandsfontein?

Reply:

(a) There number of trains operating between:

i. Germiston and Pretoria: - There are 12 train trips {Passenger Trains} operated via a diesel locomotive to shuttle services between Johannesburg and Elandsfontein. This then connects with an electrical Metro between Elandsfontein and Centurion – 10 trips, then connecting with another diesel locomotive between Centurion and Pretoria) 10 trips.

ii. There are 24 train daily trips between Springs and Dunswart.

iii. There are no train services running between Daveyton and Dunswart due to theft of overhead cables affecting both lines.

(b) There number of passenger trains that should be operating between

(i) Germiston and Pretoria is 42 passenger train trips

(ii) Springs and Dunswart is 24 passenger train trips

(iii) Dunswart and Daveyton is 72 passenger train trips

2. There reason why there is only one train that can operate at a time between Germiston and Elandsfontein is because during December 2019, when the train service was halted to allow for the signalling works project at Germiston, there was overhead cable theft between Knights and Germiston on one of the only two lines in this area. An alternative method of working (called Pilot working) in accordance with the Train Working Rules had to be implemented. This method ensures safety when train runs UP and DOWN using the same track.

12 June 2020 - NW655

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Powell, Ms EL to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

What are the reasons that (a) payments are not allocated resulting in Fidelity Fund Certificates not being issued to estate agents on time and (b) the eaab.org.za  portal is down or unresponsive regularly due to a failing Information Technology system for years?

Reply:

a) The payments deposited by agents to the Estate Agency Affairs Board (EAAB) are currently being processed manually on the Systems Application Product (SAP) software. This has resulted in a backlog and the Fidelity Fund Certificates not being issued on time. To mitigate this challenge, additional temporary employees were appointed to assist with the manual capturing of bank statements. As at 23 April 2020, all payments were allocated and 42 719 Fidelity Fund Certificates have been issued.

The current SAP software that is used by the Estate Agency Affairs Board does have shortcomings, such as the issuing of Fidelity Fund Certificates for principals linked to more than one firm. The EAAB has appointed a SAP specialist to address the software-related issues which are delaying the issuance of Fidelity Fund Certificates.

b) The Estate Agency Affairs Board acknowledges the challenges related to its portal and has accordingly developed a two-pronged approach to address this matter;

(i) To utilise its internal capacity with the assistance of a service provider to stabilise the current system, as a short term measure.

(ii) In the long term, the Estate Agency Affairs Board will overhaul its entire Information Communications Technology system. To this end, a tender, RFP – ERP/2020/009, was advertised on 28 February 2020 and a briefing session was held on 10 March 2020. The closing date for the tender was scheduled for 30 March 2020, but the National Treasury subsequently advised that it be extended to 1 June 2020 in view of the National Lockdown.

12 June 2020 - NW285

Profile picture: Tafeni, Ms N

Tafeni, Ms N to ask the Minister of Transport

Whether his department has any plans to build a bridge in Govan Mbeki township in the Mbhashe Local Municipality; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

The Eastern Cape Provincial Department (ECPDOT) of Transport has plans to build a bridge in Govan Mbeki township in the Mbashe local Municipality in the next financial year, 2020/21.

In the Current financial year, 2019/2020, an assessment was conducted and revealed the estimated cost of R 2500 000 for building of the bridge in the Govan Mbeki township. The ECPDOT also established that there’s currently a minor culvert which overflows when there are heavy rains; hence the prioritization of this project in the next financial year.

12 June 2020 - NW222

Profile picture: Thembekwayo, Dr S

Thembekwayo, Dr S to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

Whether her department is assisting and strengthening the local municipality in accordance with section 154 of the Constitution of the Republic, 1996, with any plans to replace the old sewage pipes in Ward 11 in Tembisa, Gauteng; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

The Honourable Member would know that Tembisa falls under the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality in Gauteng. The grant conditions determined by the National Treasury do not allow that the Regional Bulk Infrastructure Grant (RBIG) and the Water Services Infrastructure Grant (WSIG) be utilized to repair old sewage pipes in metropolitan areas.

 

12 June 2020 - NW683

Profile picture: Waters, Mr M

Waters, Mr M to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

(1)Whether Rand Water has a service level agreement with the City of Ekurhuleni in the provision of water to its residents; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, (2) whether she will furnish Mr M Waters with a copy of the specified service level agreement, including documentation on the reliable and consistent provision of water to residents by Rand Water; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details; (3) what are the reasons that the residents of Kempton Park have been subjected to sporadic and unreliable provision of water over the past 12 months; (4) whether the City of Ekurhuleni transgressed any of its service level obligations to the residents of Kempton Park in the provision of reliable and consistent provision of water; if so, what (a) number of times and (b) action has been taken by her department against the City of Ekurhuleni?

Reply:

(1) Yes, Rand Water has a service level agreement with the City of Ekurhuleni. The Bulk Water Supply contract details the provision of service rendered to the City of Ekurhuleni.

(2) It would be appreciated if the Honourable Member could ask specific questions.

(3) Rand Water supplies water to Kempton Park through the City of Ekurhuleni and has confirmed that there have been no sporadic and unreliable supply from Rand Water over the past 12 months within its network in Kempton Park.

(4) If there are consumer problems within Kempton Park that have been reported within area, the City of Ekurhuleni will be in a better position to respond.

12 June 2020 - NW533

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Phillips, Ms C to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

(1)Why was no provision made to supplement the existing water supply to the town Derby and/or Redirile in the North West when the size of the town has increased threefold (details furnished); (2) are there any plans to connect the towns up to a supply line from Randwater; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

(1) The Kgetleng Rivier Local Municipality (KRLM) recently increased the existing water supply of 1.1 Ml/d of water by drilling nine (9) boreholes in the Redirile Township. The boreholes are not yet connected to the Eskom network due to delays by Eskom. The new boreholes tested positive and will provide an additional 1.2 Ml/d as soon as they are functional. The municipality is investigating whether an additional three (3) boreholes could be drilled in the 2020/2021 financial year in order to meet the increasing water demand and mitigate water shortages in the area.

(2) The Local Municipality has appointed the Development Bank of South Africa (DBSA) to investigate possible solutions to provide sustainable water supply to the entire jurisdiction of the Kgetleng Rivier Local Municipality area. Plans are underway to consider the feasibility of integrating the systems of the neighbouring towns and to connect it to the Rand Water supply pipeline.

The current water supply by Rand Water Board is approximately 1.8 Ml/d. The new informal settlements areas in the KRLM jurisdiction are served by boreholes. The Local Municipality is currently developing a Water Master Plan that will include a practicable solution to provide bulk water to Derby and Redirile.

12 June 2020 - NW629

Profile picture: Nolutshungu, Ms N

Nolutshungu, Ms N to ask the Minister of Transport

Whether he undertook to distribute (a) face masks and (b) sanitisers to mini-bus drivers; if so, (i) has he delivered these and (ii) where were these delivered?

Reply:

a) The Minister undertook to distribute masks and sanitizers to all provinces for drivers and marshals in the taxi industry to reduce infections

b) Masks, sanitisers and disinfectants have been procured and delivered in all provinces during April 2020. These materials were delivered to provincial Departments of Transport who subsequently distributed to the taxi industry in their respective provinces. The following have been delivered on 30 April 2020

Item

Quantity

Sanitizers (1 liter bottles)

160 000

Sanitizers (20 liter bottles)

2400

PPE Gear

1000

Masks

580 000

Gloves

800 000

Vehicle disinfectant spray

1200

11 June 2020 - NW624

Profile picture: Motsepe, Ms CCS

Motsepe, Ms CCS to ask the Minister of Social Development

What measures is her department putting in place to ensure that families that deserve relief through food parcels, but cannot afford to call the number they are supposed to call, receive the food parcels?

Reply:

Social relief of distress in the form of food parcels, provided by SASSA is distributed in accordance with the provisions of the Social Assistance Act. For every applicant who calls in, an application form is completed and approved, prior to the delivery of the support.

In addition to individual requests for assistance, SASSA has also accepted referrals from the provincial coordinating structures, NGOs and civil society organisations. Where these referrals have been received, SASSA has contacted the citizens on the lists provided and completed the application form telephonically.

The various channels through which applications can be lodged have been implemented in an effort to ensure that everyone in need has been able to apply.

11 June 2020 - NW997

Profile picture: Ngcobo, Mr S

Ngcobo, Mr S to ask the Minister of Higher Education, Science and Technology

(1)Given that Monday, 25 May 2020, is marked Africa day, and seeing that indigenous African languages are faced with the unique challenge of adapting to a fast-changing technological era, what steps has his department taken to promote the ideal of a multilingual society as espoused in the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996; (2) whether he has found that there are digitised efforts and carved-out spaces for indigenous languages within the digital space for them to not only survive, but also to thrive in the ever-changing technological era; if not, why not; if so, what are the full relevant details?

Reply:

(1) The Department of Science and Innovation (DSI), through the South African Research Infrastructure Roadmap (SARIR), established the South African Centre for Digital Language Resources (SADiLaR). SADiLaR has an enabling function, with a focus on all official languages of South Africa, supporting research and development in the domains of language technologies and language-related studies in the humanities and social sciences. The Centre supports the creation, management and distribution of digital language resources, as well as applicable software, which are freely available for research purposes through its online repository.

The resources include language datasets (for all official South African languages, including the indigenous languages) as well as high-level resources, such as natural language processing tools that are developed for use in applications, such as machine translation engines for local languages, automatic speech recognition systems, text-to-speech systems, speech-to speech translation systems, interactive communication systems, and a variety of text-related applications, such as grammar and spelling checkers, online electronic dictionaries, and so forth.

SADiLaR plays a strategic role in ensuring the constitutional imperative is achieved in the long term to ensure that the historically diminished use and status of the indigenous languages of the people of South African are redressed and positive measures are taken to elevate the status and advance the use of these languages.

The Recognition of Prior Learning is an initiative of the DSI, which through the implementation of the Protection, Promotion, Development and Management of Indigenous Knowledge Act No 6 of 2019, aims to recognise the skills of indigenous practitioners in various IKS domains. The initiative focuses on the development of a competency-based qualification to be registered on the National Qualifications Framework. The Department is currently working with IK practitioners (Traditional Health Practice IK domain), to scope their

competencies of their various cultural settings, and has so far documented competencies in isiZulu, Setswana and TshiVenda languages. The workshops with IK practitioners are conducted in the vernacular languages of the IK practitioners. To this end, the IK occupations and accompanying competencies that are documented in the vernacular languages serve as a principle and as a means to promote and preserve the languages of the knowledge systems in its own context.

The National Recordal System (NRS) of the DSI supports the Protection, Promotion, Development and Management of Indigenous Knowledge Act No 6 of 2019 (herein after referred as the IK Act) through the registration of IK. The initiative promotes the recording of IK in vernacular languages using multimedia technology (recording of audio, video, images and transcriptions of each recorded IK story), as a means to preserve IK for future generations so that the context is not lost. Further hereto, the aim is to protect the IK from biopiracy and misappropriation, and to enable the sharing of benefits to the local and rural communities who have registered such IK in the system, should the knowledge be used by any 3rd party, following the various legal prescripts of the IK Act, No 6 of 2019. A key element of the NRS in the promotion of the vernacular languages is by having IK recorders from the participating communities to implement the documentation of IK. In this way, the youth are exposed to the value of their community IK, and through using their languages they are able to capture extensions of the very rich IK that are held by their own communities. The registered IK is held in a digital repository that stores, provide access to, transmit, manage and secure the registered indigenous knowledge via the digital platform.

(2) The South African Centre for Digital Language Resources provides a digital space for language resources and tools as part of its online repository available at https://repo.sadilar.org/. SADiLaR, through its nodes, focuses on ensuring African Languages are digitised, relevant text and speech processing technologies are developed, terminology development is supported through the creation of wordnets (which are large lexical databases containing nouns, verbs, etc. and their relationships) and language testing and training projects.

SADiLaR funds and supports a range of projects related to indigenous languages in collaboration with SADiLaR’s nodes (consisting of University of Pretoria (Department of African Languages); University of South Africa (Department of African Languages); CSIR (HLT Research Group); North-West University (Centre for Text Technology); and Inter-Institutional Centre for Language Development and Assessment (ICELDA). Projects relate to digitization, semantics and terminology, language development and teaching resources, speech resources, and text resources and technologies.

Collaboration between the North-West University, University of Pretoria and the CSIR in the area of Human Language Technologies predates the establishment of the SADiLaR. The development of a Human language technologies (HLT) speech-activated multilingual service delivery platform was funded from the European Union Government Budget Support programme, between 2014 and 2017. The platform is aimed at providing technology tools necessary for delivering information and services to South African citizens in their language of choice, in an affordable and sustainable manner. The focus was on the development of core technologies in automatic speech recognition (ASR) and text to speech (TTS) using mobile phones as the primary communication channel, furthermore, providing an HLT-enabled solution for website accessibility to print-disabled and low literate end-users.

The aim of the solution was to enable access to information and promote multilingualism. The solution involved the integration of TTS voices in South African English, Afrikaans and isiXhosa with the Non-Visual Desktop Access screen reader. Cape Access (CA) of the Western Cape Government was identified as a possible government partner following a need expressed to make their websites more accessible. CA identified 11 eCentres in which to pilot this technology. A demographics survey was conducted at these eCentres to determine who the typical visitors to these eCentres are and how they operate. After this, eCentre managers were trained on how to use the technology and the technology was subsequently installed and piloted at these eCentres.

The HLT-enabled solution which was also piloted at Kaleidoscope SA (Institute for the Blind). This pilot aimed at allowing blind students to use the Non-Visual Desktop Access (NVDA) screen reader with local languages as a basis for receiving training. Kaleidoscope SA offers formal qualifications (N4 & N5) in a number of fields to blind students.

Furthermore, an activity aimed at assessing communication practices and needs of multilingual persons using augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) was undertaken. The research was undertaken in collaboration with the Centre for Augmentative and Alternative Communication (CAAC) at the University of Pretoria and entailed the integration of CSIR Text-to-Speech (TTS) voices with AAC software. Two sets of evaluations were held and the local voices evaluated were South African English, isiXhosa, isiZulu, Afrikaans and Setswana.

The DSI is also currently funding the Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Research (CAIR), which has a node at North West University. This particular node’s area of expertise is led by a Multilingual Speech Technologies (MuST) research group focused at the creation and use of speech technologies in the less-resourced languages.

SADiLaR, through its involvement with the UNESCO Year of Indigenous languages, reached more than 850 participants directly through language celebration events. These events created a space for academics, lecturers, students (undergraduates – postgraduates), broader public as well as profound contributors in the various languages to interact, and were held across South Africa at various universities in cooperation with the National Lexicography Units of South Africa. These events culminated in SADiLaR taking part in the Language Technologies for All conference with a focus on Enabling Linguistic Diversity and Multilingualism Worldwide, creating awareness of how the South African Research Infrastructure Roadmap is directly contributing toward linguistic diversity and multilingualism through SADiLaR.

SADiLaR is also brainstorming its COVID-19 response, in particular to allow for “Rapid situational awareness in emerging situations like natural disasters or disease outbreaks”. This requires availability of Human Language Technology not only for the official languages of the country, but all languages spoken in South Africa.

11 June 2020 - NW828

Profile picture: Masango, Ms B

Masango, Ms B to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)What are the full relevant details of the causes of the glitches that resulted in the (a) nonpayment and (b) double payment of the social grants of some beneficiaries on 4 May 2020; (2) whether any person(s) has or have been identified as being responsible for causing the specified glitch(es); if so, (3) whether any disciplinary action has been or will be taken against the specified persons; if not, in each case, why not; if so, what are the relevant details in each case; (4) whether the affected beneficiaries will be required to repay the double payment of social grants; if not, (a) what is the position in this regard and (b) how will the overpayments be recovered; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

1. The challenges experienced with the May payment file were as a result of multiple factors. Firstly, technical development was required to implement the decision to split the payment files to ease congestion at access points. This required the separation of grants for older persons and persons with disabilities together with the child grants that are received by these beneficiaries, from the stand alone children’s grants.

The second technical adjustment which was required was the addition of the top up amounts announced by the President in his relief package designed to provide the most vulnerable members of our society with the ability to withstand the effects of the pandemic and in particular the lockdown. The addition of the top up amounts required programmatic changes, as the system is programmed to read the means test requirements when any increase is affected. For the top up amounts, the means test requirements had to be by-passed.

Both the above changes were implemented within a relatively short space of time, and there was not sufficient time to complete the full automation of the extraction process prior to the extraction of payments.

Furthermore, the naming convention of files had to change to accommodate the split of the grant types, as well as an extraction of less than 500 000 records per file to meet the Bank transfer requirements. This resulted in some manual intervention being required with the extraction of files.

During the manual extraction, some of the files between Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal as well as Free State and Northern Cape were mixed, resulting in 457 044 transactions for KwaZulu-Natal not being extracted; 435 004 for Western Cape being extracted in duplicate; and 165 412 transactions for Northern Cape being extracted in duplicate.

The challenge between Free State and Northern Cape records were picked up on Thursday, 30 April 2020 and the double payments were recalled through the approved banking process.

The challenge with the KwaZulu-Natal and Western Cape files was only picked up late on Sunday, 3 May 2020. While the recall files were sent to the banks through the South African Reserve Bank, not all the double payments could be reversed in time, before beneficiaries starting accessing their money.

a) The non-payments for KwaZulu-Natal were addressed through the extraction of a second file in the evening of 3 May and sent to the banks on 4 May. By 5 May all beneficiaries had access to their funds.

B) While a number of the double payments were reversed in time by the banks, some were not done in time, and the beneficiaries were able to access the double payment. The final numbers will only be confirmed after the reconciliations are complete.

2. A full investigation is underway. Given the changes in standard procedures and the manual interventions required in a usually automated environment; shortcomings of additional controls, both within the SITA and the SASSA environment, were identified. The implementation of these controls will be addressed to ensure that a similar situation does not occur in the future.

3. Since the matter is still under investigation, no disciplinary action has been taken yet. A decision as to consequences to be implemented will be made on conclusion of the investigation.

4. The affected beneficiaries will be expected to repay the amounts received in error, in terms of Section 17 of the Social Assistance Act, 2004. Immediately the error was picked up, SASSA communicated broadly, appealing to beneficiaries to return the money they should not have received, or to leave the second payment in their account. Some heeded the call and repaid the amount to SASSA, while banks were able to reverse a significant number of the double payments.

a) For those who withdrew and utilised the funds that they were not entitled to, there will be no payment of the grant in June, as they effectively received the June money in advance. Those who, on personal submission, indicate that they are unable to repay the amount in a single amount, will be allowed to sign an acknowledgement of debt and repay the amount over a 3 month period. The refund will be deducted directly from their social grant payments for the next 3 months, with their consent.

11 June 2020 - NW845

Profile picture: Waters, Mr M

Waters, Mr M to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1) What number of nonprofit organisations (NPOs) that dealt with (a) children, (b) the elderly, (c) domestic violence and (d) substance abuse were registered in each of the past three financial years; (2) what number of the specified NPOs closed down for each category in each specified financial year?

Reply:

  1. The following are categories of registrations:

Area of service

Theme

2017-18

2018-19

2019-20

Family services

Including Substance Abuse, family life/parent education, family violence shelters

1107

1131

1271

Victim Support

Victim violence shelters and services

679

699

770

Services to Children

 

49482

50538

53761

 

Adoption Services

14

18

20

 

Child Protection

314

308

331

 

Child welfare, child services, day care

36927

35870

37536

 

Children’s Homes

863

816

860

 

Community –Based Care Services for Children

1813

1885

2128

 

ECD and Partial Care Centres

7818

9700

10870

 

Homes for Children with Special Needs

286

320

333

 

Schools of Industry/ Reform Schools

480

412

413

 

Secure Care

97

129

151

 

Temporary Safe Care/ Place of Safety

870

1080

1119

Services to people with disabilities

Homes, recreation and other specialized services for people with disabilities

3423

3626

4162

Services to the elderly

Elderly care; recreation, meal programs and other services geared towards senior citizens

6941

7146

7360

2. The NPO Database captures those NPOs that opt to wind up and those that opt to Voluntary Deregister. Below is a total number:

Area of service

Dissolved (wound up) in terms of section 23(2)

Voluntary Deregistered: according to section 23(1)

Family services

4

1

Victim Support

0

4

Services to Children

3

46

Services to people with disabilities

3

7

Services to the elderly

1

12

Totals

11

70

 

11 June 2020 - NW829

Profile picture: Masango, Ms B

Masango, Ms B to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)With reference to the SA Social Security Agency’s (SASSA) proposed new operating model that will result in the clustering of regions to enable effective service delivery, (a) on what authority is the Chief Executive Officer currently implementing the proposed model and (b) what are the details of the strategic considerations that were taken into account when formulating the proposed cluster model; (2) whether SASSA obtained the relevant approval for the implementation of the proposed model from the Department of Public Service and Administration, the National Treasury and her department; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details; (3) whether the cluster head positions displayed on SASSA’s website were evaluated and graded; if not, why not; if so, (a) on what dates were the positions evaluated and graded and (b) what were the outcomes in each case; (4) whether the secondment of the cluster heads from other positions at SASSA were in line with the (a) current SASSA policy on secondments and (b) Public Service Act regulations; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details; (5) whether the proposed model will support SASSA in delivering essential services during the Covid-19 pandemic; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details? NW1036E

Reply:

(1)(a)

The SASSA Act No 9 of 2004, Section 6.1 (a) stipulates that the CEO is responsible for the management of the Agency subject to the direction of the Minister. This in essence includes inter alia the review of the operating model to enable the efficient service delivery.

The proposed model is not yet implemented since it is still on route for approval by the three Ministers in line with section 7(2) of the SASSA Act, 2004.

Kindly note that the three Regional Executive Managers are seconded on a temporary basis to manage two additional Regions each for the period of six months which will lapse at the end of October 2020. It should be noted that the said employees are not compensated as a result of the job enlargement and consultations took place before they were seconded. The secondments are in line with the Staffing Practices Policy of SASSA.

(b)

The CEO, in consultation with EXCO, identified the need to review and streamline the current operating model, business processes and Organisational structure to ensure alignment to the strategic direction of the Agency.

The following strategic considerations were taken into account:

  • The National Development Plan
  • The President’s expectations, the Minister’s expectations, the CEO’s expectations and the Stakeholder’s expectations
  • The strategic direction of the Agency in alignment with its Mandate
  • The CEO extensively consulted with internal stakeholders through roadshows across the Provinces
  • The assessment of the current operating model and the desired “future” state
  • The segregation of functions between Core and Support functions
  • The composition of EXCO as well as the synergy between EXCO and the Regional Executive Managers
  • The rationalisation of Organisation Structure i.eSpan of control, lines of reporting, delegations of Authority, staff complement, the evaluation and grading system
  • Different and yet complementary roles with respect to strategic, tactical and operational planning

(2) SASSA is in the process of obtaining the necessary approval from the Minister, in consultation with the Ministers of Finance and Public Service and Administration. At this stage there is no approval therefore implementation cannot be effected as it is depended on approval by the three Ministers.

(3) (a) The Regional Executive Manager’s positions were evaluated and graded at salary level 15. The newly proposed Cluster Head positions are not yet evaluated and graded as the said process will follow after the approval by the relevant structures.

(b) The outcomes of the evaluation and grading processes is dependent on the approval of the operating model by the Ministers. In the event that the operating model is approved, the said job will be subjected to the evaluation and grading process.

(4) The secondment of the cluster heads is in line with:

  1. The current SASSA Staffing Practices Policy which states that “the secondment of a staff member from another Branch/Department/Organisation may be considered when the need exists to fill a vacant post on a temporary basis”.
  2. Section 62 of the Public Service Regulations, 2016, which states that “a secondment may only take place if the employee or person being seconded has the necessary competency and the period of secondment does not exceed 12 calendar months, unless due to operational reasons determined otherwise by the Minister”.

The secondments of the Cluster Heads were approved in line with the above legislative framework, policy provision and Human Capital Management Delegations for a period of six months, effective from 01 May 2020 until 31 October 2020. The seconded employees have the necessary competencies since they have occupied the same position i.e Regional Executive Managers for more than seven years.

As already mentioned, the three Regional Executive Managers were duly consulted and they accepted additional responsibilities at no additional costs to the Agency. Whether the operating model is approved or not approved, relevant Human Resources (HR) interventions will be effected.

(5) The operating model was developed in October 2019 which was before the realisation of the COVID 19 pandemic. As a result, the proposed model did not directly address the COVID-19 pandemic, however the Agency developed a broad Risk Plan that ensured the efficient rendering of essential services during any calamity.This was based on the SWOT as well as the PESTLE Analysis deliberations conducted during the proposed operating model sessions. SASSA has subsequently adopted a Risk Plan with mitigating strategies which incorporates COVID 19 pandemic. Same will beincluded in the operating model if approved.

11 June 2020 - NW1015

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Bozzoli, Prof B to ask the Minister of Higher Education, Science and Technology

What (a) number of entities reporting to him as well as entities within his department paid consultants to write their (i) strategic and/or (ii) annual performance plans, (b) amount did each consultant charge, (c) was the total cost to his department for outsourcing the plans and (d) were the reasons for outsourcing?

Reply:

DEPARTMENT OF HIGHER EDUCATION AND TRAINING

Entity:

(a). Was there any paid consultants used to write the;

 (i) Strategic Plan,

(ii) Annual Performance Plans?

(b) Amount that each consultant charge?

(c) What was the total cost to his department/entity for outsourcing the plans?

(d) What were the reasons for outsourcing?

CHE

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

INSETA

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

CHIETA

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

SAQA

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

MerSETA

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

FP&M SETA 

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

CHIETA

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

CETA 

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

ETDP SETA

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

TETA 

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

EWSETA

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

SASSETA

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

HWSETA

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

Not applicable

FoodBev SETA

  1. Strategic Plan - Yes for facilitation of Board strategy
  1. Annual Performance Plans - No

i. R40 250

ii. Not applicable

  1. R40 250

 

There was no outsourcing of the developing of the plans however there was a facilitator who facilitated the board strategy session that led to the development of the strategic outcomes by the Board

LGSETA

The consultant was appointed and paid to facilitate the strategic planning session only for 2020/21 financial year. The development of the plans were done internally

 

Appointed Service provider: Simulation Consultants CC

R145 000

R145 000

The consultant was appointed for facilitation of the strategic planning session only because he/she had to give an external perspective/insight on the review of the five year plans ensuring that the session addresses the new developmental goals assigned for our sector during the strategic planning session.

AgriSETA

Strategic Plan, Sector Skills Plan, Annual Report and Annual Performance Plan

Regenesy -R93 100

Blackmoon Advertising – R283 426

R376 400 

 

AgriSETA doesn’t appoint service provider for writing APP and Strategic plans, management write and prepare those documents 

 

A consultant is only appointed to edit and design and layout, printing of the documents etc since we have no graphic designers internally. That part is outsourced because we have no graphic design and printing equipment to produce such documents including annual reports.

MICT SETA

Motif Capital Partner

R 66 240

R 66 240

‒      The introduction of a new framework for the development of Strategic plans was quite different from the previous framework.

 

‒      The lateness of the introduction of the framework versus submission timelines.

NSFAS

YES

R490 000.00 

Refer (b)

When the Entity was placed under Administration one of the major concerns and challenges was the substandard work that came from the Planning and Monitoring Unit in terms of the Strategic Plan and Annual Performance Plan. The onboarding of a specialist was to assist the Entity to meet this requirement. The mandate ranged from providing ad-hoc advice on the design of SMART indicators in relations to targets to the training of key staff on the design in order to avoid submitting a sub-standard work.

QCTO

The services of facilitators from Government Technical Advisory Centre (GTAC) was engaged for supporting the development of the strategic plans. 

R 919 296.00

R 919 296.00

QCTO used GTAC as the new Framework for Medium Term Planning was introduced by DPME and the QCTO needed capacity building for management to develop plans that comply with the new framework. The process was not outsourced but GTAC facilitated and guided the process. QCTO management with full consultation of staff developed the plans across all levels of the organisation. 

FASSET

Africa International Advisors

R 115 000.00 

 

R115 000

Due to internal capacity constraints and the new framework which was introduced. This was to ensure that we were able to adhere to the requirements of this new framework.

CATHSSETA

Yes

R247  068 

R247  068 

1.  Due to the DPME revised framework on SPs and APPs the CATHSSETA acquired the services of an experienced and reputable company to assist in the compilation of the documents. The framework had a lot of changes that required the SETA to appoint someone who is knowledgeable about the new planning needs etc. It must be noted that Ziko Consulting played a supportive role in the process and the CATHSSETA team managed the entire consultation and approval process.

2.   The SETA is also challenged with capacity issues within the unit in terms of human resources, therefore a support structure is required for the short term to assist professional compilation of such these entity strategic do documents.

W&RSETA

W&RSETA contracted Underhill Corporate Solutions for the compilation of its Strategic Plan and Annual Performance Plan

The contracted company (Underhill Corporate Solutions) assigned 4 of its employees to the project; and the total amount charged by the company was R489 670.00. 

R489 670.00.

Limited resources as the unit only had one employee responsible for strategic planning. 

DEPARTMENT OF SCIENCE AND INNOVATION 

The entities reporting to the Minister did not outsource the writing of the Strategic Plans or Annual Performance Plans, and responded as follows:

(a) None. The Department of Science and Innovation, National Research Foundation, Academy of Science of South Africa, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research Council, Human Sciences Research Council, National Advisory Council on Innovation and South African National Space Agency did not pay consultants to write the:

(i) Strategic Plan; and/or

(ii) Annual Performance Plan.

(b) Nil.

(c) Not Applicable (N/A).

(d) N/A.

11 June 2020 - NW830

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Masango, Ms B to ask the Minister of Social Development

(a) On what date was her department’s labour relations appeal committee appointed, (b) what are the relevant details of the process followed in appointing the specified panel, (c) what are the (i) names and (ii) professional designations of each member of the panel, National Assembly written Reply: 830 of 2020 (d) what are the powers and functions of the panel and (e) on what statutory grounds does the panel rely to perform its functions and duties? NW1037E

Reply:

a) The appeals committee was appointed on 25 May 2019.

b) The then Minister was requested to consider and appoint an Appeals Authority.

c) (i) Adv. Zandile Gail Mpungose, (Chairperson); Adv. Sivalingam Pather; Mr James Cornwall; and Mr James Makiwane.

(ii) Adv. Mpungose – attorney in private practice;

Adv. Pather – is a Director of Labour Relations in the National Prosecuting Authority.

Mr Cornwall – retired / former chief negotiator for the employer in the Public Health and Welfare Sectoral Bargaining Council.

Mr Makiwane – Former manager of Labour Relations in the private sector.

d) The Committee considers appeals referred to the Minister and takes a final decision on whether to uphold the sanction or appeal. Such outcomes are then communicated to the appellant.

e) The Appeals Panel derives its authority from clause 8 of the Disciplinary Code and Procedures for the Public Service (Public Service Coordinating Bargaining Council (PSCBC) Resolution 1 of 2003.

11 June 2020 - NW433

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Masipa, Mr NP to ask the Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development

What is the Government’s position regarding the agricultural exports to China in light of the current coronavirus pandemic?

Reply:

The Department’s position is that agricultural exports to China will and should continue in line with the existing sanitary and phytosanitary prescripts.

COVID 19 pandemic has not affected the exports of animal and plant products to China.

  • Wool exports are going according to plan and local purchases are still ongoing. The last wool auction as reported by Cape Wool industry was only 0.7% down which is normal. Because of the global uncertainties, with movement restrictions all over the world, the wool prices are expected to temporarily go down. The meat export is still going well to date.
  • Exports of Apples, Table Grapes and Citrus to China is on-going in line with agreed protocols and no changes have been observed since the outbreak of Coronavirus and no restrictions to market access has been observed. Containers are cleared at the ports in China, with no hold ups or delay. All the necessary inspections for Production Units, Packhouses and Inspection Points have been done and approval has been granted by China.
  • With regard to other preclearance or special programmes:

1. Japan-Exports of Citrus and Barlinka Grapes 2) Mexico - Exports of Apples 3) Taiwan - Exports of Apples 4) South Korea - Exports of Citrus – For these markets, there is a requirement for pre-inspections to be conducted in South Africa by inspectors from those countries before consignments leave the South African shores. In an attempt to adhere to the travel restrictions for incoming visitors from high risk countries, the Department proposed to those countries the following:

  • Departmental inspectors who are familiar with the export programme undertake the required preclearance inspections; and
  • provide the necessary reports and records to the importing country.

Feedback is awaited from the trading partners on the proposed alternative inspection protocol.

2. United States of America (USA) – Exports of Flower Bulbs, Apples, Pears, Table Grapes and Citrus- the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The USA Preclearance inspector who is based in Cape Town is currently inspecting Table Grapes to USA and the volume has tripled as compared to the past ten years.

With regard to field inspections for Apples, Pears and Citrus, the USDA had granted approval for exports without field inspections. The Department is also in communication with USDA with regards to the intended visit of four (04) USA inspectors who are due to come to South Africa for preclearance of consignments of citrus to be exported to the USA for the current season.

11 June 2020 - NW639

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Arries, Ms LH to ask the Minister of Social Development

What is the role that her department has given municipal councillors in distributing food parcels during the national lockdown to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic?

Reply:

The Department has not given municipal councillors any role in distributing food parcels during the national lockdown to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Department assigned Provincial, District and Local DSD officials and its Agencies to handle the food parcels distribution.

11 June 2020 - NW777

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Waters, Mr M to ask the Minister of Social Development

What (a) number of state rehabilitation facilities are in each province, (b) is the capacity in each case, (c) is the (i) name and (ii) location of each facility, (d) treatments does each facility offer and (e) is the duration of stay for each type of addiction?

Reply:

The Department has established state treatment centres in all the nine provinces. The total number of (a)state treatment centres in the country are thirteen (13) centres. The breakdown of treatment centres in provinces is as follows: Gauteng (1) Dr FF Ribeiro treatment treatmentcentre; Limpopo (1)Seshegotreatment centre; Northern Cape (1) Northern Cape treatment centre; Eastern Cape (1) Ernest Malgastreatment centre; Western Cape (2)Denovo and Kensington treatment centres; KwaZulu Natal(2)Madadeni and Newlands Park treatment centres; Mpumalanga (2) centres Swartfointen and Nkangala treatment centres; Free State (1)Botshabelo treatment centres ; and North West (2)Taung and J B Marks treatment centres. Taung treatment centre (North West) and Botshabelo (Free State) are not yet operational.

The bed capacity in each centre (b)and the location of the centres(c)is as follows:

Province and name of the centre

  1. Bed capacity

(c) Location

Gauteng DrFF Ribeiro centre

300

Zonderwater

Cullinan, Pretoria

Limpopo Seshego centre

72

Seshego Zone 1

Polokwane, Limpopo

Northern Cape Northern Cape centre

40

R31 National road,

Kimberly

Eastern Cape Ernest Malgas centre

38

New Brighton 2,

Port Elizabeth

Western Cape Denovo centre

120

Old Paarl Road

Kraaifontein,

Cape Town

Western Cape Kensington centre

30

Kensington Road

Maitland,

Cape Town

KwaZulu Natal Madadeni centre

44

Madadeni Township, Newcastle

KwaZulu Natal Newlands Park centres

100

New Land West-Newlands Park, Durban

Mpumalanga - Swartfointen centre

50

R40 Road

White River,

Mpumalanga

Mpumalanga -Nkangala centre

Operationalisation underway

it will have 50 bed capacity

Nkangala district:

Blesfontein Farm

Ogies

Free State - Botshabelo centre

Construction is underway: will have 40 bed capacity

Botshabelo, Bloemfontein

North West - J B Marks

40 capacity

Tlokwe-Potchefstroom

North West - Taung

Once operational it will have 20 bed capacity

Greater Taung Nr.1 Village

State treatment centres (d) have started to implementSubstance Use Disorders (SUD) treatment, in an inpatient treatment setting. The SUDtreatment include the medical and psychosocial treatment services. The treatment is also based on individual service users’ treatment needs identified during the assessment process.

The treatment modalities that are usedare individual therapeutic counselling, therapeutic group counselling and family therapy. In terms of treatment regime for specific drugs, the centres observe the Department of Health Standard Treatment Guidelines for Essential Medicines List, of South Africa.

(e).The treatment period/duration range from 6 weeks to 16 weeks based on the needs of each service user.

11 June 2020 - NW146

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Masango, Ms B to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)Whether her department is planning to introduce an alternative for the cash pay-points for the approximately 200 000 beneficiaries of SA Social Security grants who are still paid cash at pay-points; if so, (a) what are the alternatives and (b) on what date will they be introduced; (2) what (a) are the names of all the cash-in-transit companies that SA Post Office (i) has used and (ii) is currently using to deliver cash for social grants at cash pay-points and (b) process was followed to procure the services of each of these companies?

Reply:

1(a) SASSA, working together with SAPO, is still exploring possible alternatives to the cash pay points. No final decision has been made yet and no date has been set for implementation.

(b) All parties involved in the grant payment process agree that it is important that we move away from cash payments due to the security issues and the high cost of delivering cash to pay points. The only viable alternative that is been seriously considered is exploring the move to existing and future cashless payment platforms such as more use of cards at ATMs, Point of Sale platforms and Mobile solutions. No alternative payment channel will be introduced until it has been tested and confirmed that it is fit for purpose.

2(a) (i) and (ii) SAPO uses Fidelity Security Service (Pty) Ltd to pay beneficiaries at Cash Pay Points.

(b) Two Requests for Proposals (RFPs) were issued to appoint a service provider for the provision of cash at pay points:

Interim Solution

RFP/26/18/19/ Cash Conveyance and Handling/RA – this RFP was issued as an interim measure (using cash bags) whilst the long -time process (using cash dispensers) was in the process.

A close RFP was issued on 16 August 2018 to five companies. The close bid process was approved by National Treasury. Four of the five companies that were invited indicated that they will not participate in the RFP process some indicating that they did not have the capacity to provide the service.

Fidelity Security Services (Pty) Ltd was the only bidder that responded and the tender was awarded to them. The contract was for a period of six months commencing from 1 October 2018 up until 31 March 2019 to allow for the long-term solution to be finalised.

Long-Term Solution

RFP/18/19/36 Cash Conveyance and Handling Processing and Dispensing Service for SASSA Grant Payouts/KN .

An open tender process was advertised on the National Treasury e-Tender portal on 13 August 2018. Only two bidders submitted proposals (G4S Cash Management Solutions (Pty) Ltd and Fidelity Security Services (Pty) Ltd).

G4S Cash Management Solutions (Pty) Ltd was disqualified due to not complying fully with the tender requirements. The tender was awarded to Fidelity Security Services (Pty) Ltd for the period of two years commencing on 1 May 2019 up until 30 April 2021.

3. (a) All tenders above R10m falls within the delegation of the Board of Directors for approval. However on the 10 November 2017 the Board of Directors resolved that The GCEO (Mr Mark Barnes) and the GCOO (Ms Lindiwe Kwele) were duly authorised to engage, negotiate, take decisions and sign any documents relating to the provision of payment services and systems for social assistance without referring back to the Board of Directors for guidance. The appointment of the CIT Company for both Interim and Long term solutions was therefore duly approved by the two delegated officials.

3. (b) The contracts for both RFP/26/18/19/ Cash Conveyance and Handling/RA and RFP/18/19/36 Cash Conveyance and Handling Processing and Dispensing Service for SASSA Grant Payouts/KN are attached.

 

11 June 2020 - NW627

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Ngwenya, Ms DB to ask the Minister of Social Development

Whether the Gender-Based Violence Command Centre has compiled statistics on gender-based violence; if not, why not; if so, what number of (a) calls has the centre received and (b) these calls were reported to the SA Police Service?

Reply:

a) Yes, the Gender Based Violence Command Centre compiles/records statistics. See below records of calls, USSDs as well as SMSs recorded:

cid:1720e194a37692e331

(b)

All Gender Based Violence emergency calls are referred to SA Police Service. However, not all received calls are reported or referred to SA Police Service. It is dependent on the merit of case as well as the present issue of the client. The Gender Based Violence Command Centre is equipped with Social Work Practitioners who provides immediate psychosocial social support services including emotional support through trauma counselling and victim containment.

11 June 2020 - NW385

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van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Social Development

What progress has her department made in respect of its commitment to implement the findings of the Commission for Gender Equality report on shelter services to abused women and children?

Reply:

The DSD has been in constant engagement with the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) in terms of providing general the status update on the issues that were raised by the report.

The Department has developed a draft Intersectoral policy framework on the provision of sheltering services. The policy is meant to address amongst others the various roles and responsibilities of the different stakeholders in the provision of the sheltering services. The Victim Support Service (VSS) Bill and Policy that were presented to Cabinet and approved in December 2019, are part of the legislation frameworks that are key in the responding to issues of sheltering services. The VSS Bill is in progress to be published for public comments.

It is critical to highlight that the Department is continuing with the partnership forged with the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure. The partnership is meant to increase the numbers of shelters across the country. So far, infrastructures/buildings considered to be provide sheltering services for abused women and children have been identified in Gauteng and the Western Cape.

It is critical to highlight that most of the deadlines indicated in the areas forming part of the report, have been drastically effected by the COVID-19 situation that is facing the country.

The deadlines that were proposed will now be reviewed to execute this activities in 2020/2021.Below are the specifics in terms of the areas raised by the report that the Department is addressing:

The late payment of tranches severely undermines the functioning of shelters. In turn, the CGE recommends that urgent action on the part of DSD is taken to instil safeguards within its contract management system wherein it provides clear pre-warning of required payments and in turn accountability of those officials responsible for effecting the payments whom do so late. The DSD is afforded the ambit to devise its own safeguard. Although, it must be effective and able to be rolled out throughout the nine provinces. The safeguard including time frames for roll out to the nine provinces must be provided to the CGE within three months of release of this report.

The DSD has developed a draft Sector Funding Policy that is meant to provide guidance across all nine provinces in terms standardised funding and implementation of funding model that is consistence across all province.

The draft Sector Funding Policy has been presented for consideration and approval to Minister and Members of Executive Council (MINMEC) meeting that was held in the current quarter. The MINMEC will make inputs and the approval of the policy will take place in last quarter of this financial year.

The National DSD in the current 2019/20 resume the implementation of the multi-year (3yrs) contract with National NGOs of which is another way of fast-tracking payment to services provider. This approach going forward will be proposed to provinces as it will cut-down on administration burden that are often resulting in delays.

The DSD to finalise its policy regarding GBV Prevention Programme for LGBTIQA+ Persons within six months from the date of release of this report, including clear directives to shelters to comply and not unfairly disseminate against LGBTIQA+ persons, including a clearly communicated complaints process for survivors to report any discriminatory action on the part of a shelter.

DSD has conducted consultations in 2017/18 which included various stakeholders across all nine province on the development of GBV prevention guideline for LGBTIQ+ persons. The document has been presented in the first and second quarters of this financial year to the Provincial and National Task Team for LGBTI led by the Department for Justice for endorsement. In quarter three and four the document will be presented to other stakeholders for inputs and endorsement. DSD funded shelters were consulted widely on the guideline document.

An admission criteria that will be LGBTIQ+ friendly will be included on the guideline document to be finalised by 31 March 2021. Furthermore, the DSD will identify and support three Shelters that will be piloted as LGBTIQ+ friendly shelter to create a model that can be replicated across the country.

Provincial DSDs have been motivated across all nine provinces to incorporate in their funding criteria preference of funding NGOs that are prioritising services to LGBTIQ+ persons. For example, Gauteng DSD in the current financial year is funding organisation (BadumetseBatho centre) that is providing services to LGBTI community in the Sedibeng areas and the following are the components funded: 1 Social Work post, 1 Social Auxiliary Work post and 20 volunteers for the NGO.

The guideline document is in the last phase of development whereby it is presented to various stakeholders for inputs. This is done through internal DSD workforce with a number of other competing demands. Hence it has not yet been finalized as per the CGE proposed timeline of six months. It will be available a refined draft by 31 March 2020.

DSD after consulting key stakeholders to provide the CGE with:

A standardised policy detailing the manner and criteria to fulfil when survivors wish to apply for extension at a shelter. This should also include a costing analysis wherein the costs of extensions are forecast and budgeted for and a clear complaints mechanism for survivors to appeal any negative decision.

The DSD in the current financial year is developing an Intersectoral Policy on sheltering services and it will include a detailed criteria to be fulfilled in instance where a victim/survivor need to apply for an extension of stay at a shelter. A draft Policy on Sheltering service will be available for consultation by 31 March 2020.

The Department has undertaken a process of costing analysis on the implementation of the Policy and Bill on Victim Support Services and that process covers cost analysis of the shelters. Deloitte was appointed as a service provider and by 31 March 2020 a cost analysis report that covers shelters will be available.

A standardised policy detailing the monitoring of survivors after existing the shelter including clear indicators to determine if the survivor is adjusting favourably.

The DSD has developed a draft Victim Support Services Policy and Bill that were presented to Cabinet on 03 December 2019 for endorsement to gazette for public comments by March 2020. Both the VSS Policy and Bill are designed to serve the purpose of monitoring and evaluation of Victim Support Services including shelters across all nine provinces. Both documents will incorporate monitoring and evaluation of services at different levels, by district office, provinces and national office. The oversight will also be conducted by other different stakeholders including Chapter Nine Institutions and the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation (DPME). DSD provinces will be monitored through the monthly and quarterly reports on indicators that they are implementing.

The aspect of monitoring the victim/survivor favourable adjustment will be prioritised in the development of the monitoring tools.

The two policies as per recommendations 4.1 and 4.2 must be provided to the CGE within six months after release of the investigative report.

Both Policies: Intersectoral Policy on Sheltering Services and Victim Support Services Policy will be shared with CGE by 31 March 2020 as draft documents. They are both still in development phases hence and need to undergo approval processes hence the department could not share them as per the timeline of six month proposed.

DSD in consultation with key stakeholders:

1. To standardise salaries and/or stipends of persons employed by shelters, including detailing criteria. Such standardisation must be taken into account during the budget allocation provided to shelters.

2. Detail and set the educational requirements and core skills needed for the requisite job roles in shelters.

Skills Development in Provinces for Shelters are not Accredited

The Department developed the Victim Support Services (VSS) Policy and Bill which were approved by Cabinet in December 2019. The VSS Policy and Bill, amongst other elements, will be addressing the regulation of the provision of sheltering services, registration of Victim Support Services facilities and accreditation of programmes rendered in the shelters including skills development programmes in shelters.

Furthermore, the Department has embarked on the project of ensuring that skills development programmes that are rendered in shelters across all nine provinces are accredited. This exercise is conducted in consultation with various SETAs including the Department line function SETA, the Health and Welfare SETA (HWSETA). A draft capacity building plan for the sector will be in place by 31 March 2020 developed by the National VEP Technical which will cover proposed accredited training for shelters.

The deployment of 200 social workers are not recognising previous experience and not looking at unemployment of current NGO service providers

The DSD appointed in December and January 200 social workers across all nine provinces to deal with the fight against GBV. They were all provided with training on trauma debriefing and psychosocial support services. All provinces resumed the processes of permanent appointment however, some were affected by the lockdown period to conclude permanent appointments. Therefore, all 200 Social Workers appointment will be finalized post the lockdown period.

The Department failed to implement the NAWONGO judgement and an explanation needs to be provided in this regard

Post the Nawongo judgement, the Department acknowledged that it requires additional capacity to assist with implementation of the 2014 court approved policy, as the policy required a change of organisational functions, systems, processes and structures. The Free State Department therefore approached KPMG, who assisted in drafting of the funding policy and costing models in line with the 2014 court approved policy.

These were sent to court and the court accepted them as working progress. This was aimed at supporting the Department with the implementation of the policy.

There were extensive consultations between the national and provincial departments of social development, more specifically DSD Free State and National and Provincial Treasuries; as well as with the NPO sector, on how the Court approved policy will be implemented.

These reforms were prescribed around the time where provincial budgets were negatively affected by the global economic crises, resulting to no additional funds becoming available to the provinces since the 2010/11 financial year. Most provinces were affected by means of a declining budget growth rate which was more or less in line with the inflation over the years thus leaving no room for expansion or response to budget pressures. The sluggish growth of the provincial budget happened in the midst of increasing demand to fund improvement in conditions of service (annual salary adjustments) as well compensation of employees’ pressures from core service delivery departments such as Education and Health. In prior years funding for annual salary adjustments was catered for by National Treasury, however over the last few years; provinces were and are still expected to fund such adjustments within their own constrained allocations.

A case in point is with the commencement of the 2019/20 budget processes, where National and Provincial Treasuries already alluded that there will be no additional funding over the MTEF, as National Treasury indicated to the province that growth is fragile and that there is a subdued growth in tax revenue.

Given the above, the challenges that led to the Department not fully implementing the NAWONGO Court judgement are as follows:

a) Implementation of the 2014 Policy was objectively impossible without the unqualified support and financial backing of National Treasury.

b) Funding for welfare services must still take place within the budgeting process which is beyond the relevant department’s control.

c) The current NPO budget which does not cover the core costs of even one service (i.e. out of 11 statutory services and 29 other services) and

d) The NPO budget has decreased in real terms each year since the court case and therefore, the provisions of the Nawongo Court judgement could not be realized in terms of the core cost of services.

e) The costing model that was developed in partnership with KPMG was rejected by the National Treasury as it was declared to be expensive, in light of the budget constraints and therefore it could not be implemented.

Only increased funding for transfers to NPOs will ensure the full compliance with the court order. The implication is that there are other parties that are necessary to increase the funding of the Department, i.e. the Executive Council of Provinces, Provincial Treasuries, and the National Treasury.

The Commission is concerned about The Department’s ability to monitor and evaluate provinces

The Victim Support Services Policy and Bill caters for monitoring and evaluation of Victim Support Services facilities including shelters in provinces, development of monitoring tools and systems. It also includes monitoring and evaluation of these services at different levels, by district office, provinces and national office. The oversight will also be conducted by other different stakeholders including Chapter Nine Institutions and the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation (DPME). Provinces are monitored through the monthly and quarterly reports on indicators that they are implementing.

 

11 June 2020 - NW31

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Abrahams, Ms ALA to ask the Minister of Social Development

(1)In view of the High Court judgment granting her department an extension on all lapsed foster care grants in November 2019, what is the current backlog of foster care grants in each province; (2) whether all lapsed foster care orders will be completed before the new deadline of November 2020; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

1. The foster care orders that were due to lapse on 28 November 2019 for the respective provinces are as follows:

E. Cape: 896

Free State: 2041

Gauteng: 4 281

KZN: 12 445

Limpopo: 3 051

Mpumalanga:486

N. Cape: 345

N. West: 2 045

W. Cape: 4 888

These orders are now deemed to be valid by the North Gauteng High Court Order that was issued on 26 November 2019 therefore, there is no backlog of lapsed foster care orders.

2. Foster care orders that will be completed before the new deadline of November 2020;

EASTERN CAPE:

The Eastern Cape Province will ensure extension of all foster care orders affected by the NGHCO, before it expires on 26 November 2020. As already indicated above on the interpretation and implementation of the North Gauteng High Court Order and the Eastern Cape Province intersectoral position on the management of these foster care orders so as to avoid having all the affected orders lapsing on the same day when the NGHCO expires on 26 November 2020. Intersectoral collaboration and provision of tools of trade to social workers at service offices brought about the success in relation to the 2017 Judgement. The following measures which will ensure extension of foster care orders beyond 26 November 2020 will continue:

  • Case-flow Meetings with Presiding Officers and Social Workers / Case Managers.
  • Monthly engagements with Department of Social Development and SASSA Senior Management as well as Judicial Cluster Heads with their Sub Cluster Heads for strategic decisions and monitoring on implementation of resolutions taken for management of foster care.
  • DSD – Social Workers to approach courts with a social work report and the required documentation as provided for in the Children’s Act 38 of 2005 as amended with all the relevant parties appearing before the Presiding Officer as required.
  • Allocation of court dates and issuing of orders for child protection matters
  • Judiciary to prioritize issuing of court orders affected by North Gauteng High Court.
  • DSD Social Workers to ensure that all orders issued by courts are collected and submitted to SASSA, captured and updated on the system by SASSA
  • South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) expedite capturing and updating of all orders issued by the courts and submitted to them by DSD respectively.
  • The three entities at local level will continue meeting on a weekly basis to ensure reconciliation of figures, jointly looking at the draft final report to be submitted to the Provincial Office as well as ensuring that all orders due to lapse are extended and updated on SOCPEN.
  • Sharing of resources by the three entities when the need arise.
  • Funding of Designated Child Protection Organisations rendering child protection services.
  • Implementation of s186 of the Children’s Act (that allows long term placement until the child turns 18) which will subsequently ease the current high caseloads of orders due for extension.
  • Form 30 Applications (for screening of prospective foster parents and adoptive parents against Part B of the Child Protection Register) continue to be sent to National DSD timeously to ensure a shortened response time by National DSD.
  • Timeous submission of a list of all children who have applied for Unabridged Birth Certificates to National DSD for possible exemption from paying as well as expediting processing by the Department of Home Affairs.
  • The Province will continuously ensure that the budget is available for advertisements in line with Regulation 56 of the Children’s Act (tracing parents of children found to be in need of care and protection which is a key requirement for all alternative care placements including foster care order extensions).
  • Eastern Cape Province will continue addressing shortages of social workers and social work supervisors, filling Departmental vacant funded posts as well as funding of Designated Child Protection Organizations (DCPOs).
  • The Province will continue with its efforts in providing tools of trade for social workers at service office level.

FREE STATE:

At the time of the expiry of the North Gauteng High Court Order, 2041 orders were due to lapse, but all these orders are deemed valid in line with the North Gauteng High Court Order extension. The Provincial and District Plans are reviewed to ensure the management of the extension of foster care orders in the Province.

GAUTENG:

Gauteng Province is committed to finalise all lapsed orders by end of November 2020. However, the extension of the foster care orders is dependent on other Stakeholders including, Department of Justice, Home Affairs, etc.

Furthermore, there are challenges experienced from some of the Stakeholders, such as:

  • Different interpretation of the High Court ruling
  • Requirement of a Police Clearance Certificate for extension of Orders which has cost implications for the client.
  • Delay in getting court dates.
  • Requirement of an Unabridged Birth Certificate which has cost implications for the client.

KZN:

The Province of KwaZulu-Natal has implemented various strategies to ensure effective implementation of the North Gauteng High Court Order Interim Regime issued 26 November 2019 in order to meet the new deadline date. The strategies include amongst others:

  • Facilitation of the Foster Care Mondays by District Directors and Foster Care Fridays facilitated by the Service Office Managers that will take form of working sessions between Social Development and South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) with the following outputs at the end of each working session:
  • Number of foster care orders captured
  • Reconciled foster care statistics
  • Weekly Report on Foster Care for onward submission at Head Office.
  • Monthly foster care meetings to be facilitated by the Chief Director, Social Welfare Services to track and monitor implementation of the North Gauteng High Court Order Interim Regime issued 26 November 2019.
  • Provincial Intersectoral Foster Care meetings quarterly to be facilitated by the Acting Deputy Director General, Developmental Welfare Services between Department of Justice, Department of Home Affairs for purposes of identifying challenges that might have a negative impact towards effective implementation of the North Gauteng High Court Order Interim Regime issued 26 November 2019 and development of integrated interventions to address the identified challenges.

LIMPOPO:

All the foster care cases covered by North Gauteng High Court Order will have been completed by November 2020. The Province has developed action plans in the districts which are monitored on weekly basis to ensure that the cases are attended to.

MPUMALANGA:

All court orders projected to lapse by November 2020 will be attended to before the expiry of the

North Gauteng High Court Order on Foster Care.

NORTHERN CAPE:

The Northern Cape, Department of Social Development, has systems in place to monitor the implementation of the NGHCO. There is a good working relationship between DSD, SASSA and Department of Justice. The Department of Social Development in the Northern Cape Province resolve to implement the provisions of the Children’s Act in full.

NORTH WEST:

The Province will ensure the review of all the foster care orders that are due to lapse in 2020 and extend all eligible placement s through intensifying monthly monitoring of performance at all levels and capacitating all 18 alternative care units.

WESTERN CAPE:

The North Gauteng High Court Order granted on the 26th of November 2019 deemed all foster care orders valid until 25 November 2020.

The Western Cape Department of Social Development has a provincial foster care management plan in place to manage foster care in the province to ensure that orders are extended before the termination of the current High Court Order. This plan is dependent on the other processes in collaboration with other departments namely:

a) Social workers to approach the children's coats with any timelines to obtain foster care orders for the full duration of the two years or beyond in terms of section 186 of the Children's Act 38 of 2005.

b) Regions were cautioned against issuing confirmation letters for the duration of the current North Gauteng High Court Order to prevent a repetition of a large number of foster care orders lapsing simultaneously on 25 November 2020.

c) The Department of Justice and Constitutional Development to extend foster care orders for two years or beyond.

d)Form 30 notifications are to be issued within the required timeframe by the National Department of Social Development.

e) Birth certificates of children in the alternative care system to be issued timelessly by the Department of Home Affairs.

f) Foster care orders to be submitted to SASSA timeously to ensure the continuation of the foster child grants.

The Western Cape remains committed to ensure the care and protection of children in the alternative care system

11 June 2020 - NW1017

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Bozzoli, Prof B to ask the Minister of Higher Education, Science and Technology

(a) What number of cases of (i) employees and (ii) syndicates of the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) suspected of fraud in each case have been handed to the Commercial Crime Unit of the SA Police Service, (b) on what dates were they handed to the unit, (c) what progress has the unit made in pursuing each case, (d) what was the total value of the suspected fraud in each case, (e) are there any outstanding cases which will still be handed over and (f) have all persons suspected of fraud been removed from the staff of NSFAS?

Reply:

(a) (i) Five cases of fraud involving NSFAS employees were registered with the Wynberg South African Police Services.

(ii) Following the arrest of three NSFAS employees on or about 9 October 2019, the NSFAS Chief Governance, Risk and Compliance Executive initiated a reconciliation project, which entailed extracting a history of all SBux purchases and withdrawal transactions concluded with merchants in the Western Cape specifically. The rationale being that there were no institutions on SBux in the Western Cape, yet transactions were being concluded daily, which pointed to the operation of a syndicate.

(b) The five cases registered with the Wynberg SAPS office between 2017 and 2019, were handed over to the Commercial Crimes Unit on or about 10 November 2019. A criminal inquiry under Case No: 200/08/2019 was also handed over at the same time.

(c) In the five cases of fraud involving NSFAS employees, the following progress has been made:

  • Case No: 323/05/2017 – Warrant of arrest has been issued as the accused fled the province and his whereabouts are unknown.
  • Case No: 80/11/2018 - Warrant of arrest has been issued as the accused fled the province and his whereabouts are unknown.
  • Case No: 14/10/2019 – Allegations are being investigated.
  • Case No: 200/08/2019 – The National Prosecuting Authority is negotiating a plea bargain.
  • Case No: 82/10/2019 – The matter has been placed on the court roll for 7 July 2020 to view video footage obtained of the alleged fraudulent transaction.

The criminal inquiry registered under Case No: 200/08/2019 is being investigated. Given that the transactions at the Western Cape merchant stores were concluded during September 2019, and the criminal inquiry was officially opened in November 2019, the video footage at the specific merchant stores were only retained for a maximum of 14 days from the date of the incident, where after the video footage is deleted by the merchant store.

(d) In the five cases of fraud involving NSFAS employees, the total value of the suspected fraud is as follows:

  • Case No: 323/05/2017 – R15 503.76
  • Case No: 80/11/2018 - R86 135.41
  • -Case No: 14/10/2019 – Contravening the provisions of the National Qualifications Framework Amendment Act, No. 12 of 2019
  • Case No: 200/08/2019 – R3 500.00
  • Case No: 82/10/2019 – R8 000.00

The reconciliation project and subsequent criminal inquiry under Case No: 200/08/2019 revealed 508 individual transactions/fraudulent transactions were concluded, amounting to R354 595.65.

(e) & (f) There are currently internal disciplinary hearings underway and subject to the dismissal of the relevant employee(s), the NSFAS management team will consider pursuing criminal charges against the employee(s).

11 June 2020 - NW1016

Profile picture: Bozzoli, Prof B

Bozzoli, Prof B to ask the Minister of Higher Education, Science and Technology

(1)Given that the Vision of the Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) is to be a leading technology innovation agency that stimulates and supports technological innovation to improve the quality of life for all South Africans, what (a) are the details of five examples of technological innovation that have taken place in the small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) that have been funded to provide them with science, engineering and technology support and (b) was the cost of funding for each SMME in the 2018-19 financial year; (2) which three products of developing indigenous knowledge into technologically innovative products does the TIA intend to develop; (3) whether the aim of TIA to invest in the translation and commercialisation of innovations is based upon a concrete plan; if not, why not; if so, by what date will the plan be made available; (4) whether the plan accords with international best practice; if not, why not; if so, what are the comparative examples that were used to develop the plan; (5) whether he will provide Prof B Bozzoli with the plan; if not, why not; if so, on what date?

Reply:

(1) Examples of five SMME projects that TIA funded in the 2018/19 financial year through its various funding instruments (including the Seed Fund, Technology Stations Programme and Technology Development Fund) are:

i. RIOT Network – RIOT has developed a wireless communications network technology that makes it easy for anyone to setup, operate and monetize public wireless broadband networks by agglomerating private network access devices of individuals (i.e. households) and very small businesses. The technology is useful for extending broadband coverage to underserviced areas, and it enables SMME to operate as local internet service providers (ISPs). The project is currently completing its technology development and received financial support of R3 451 700 in 2018/19.

The technology has been successfully tested and deployed in Olievenhoutbosch (an area plagues with break-ins), where a subset of the local community is using the technology to monitor theft in the area. This is achieved through artificial intelligence enabled IP cameras, that detects and alert residences of suspicious behaviour in the region. The cameras are interconnected and access through RIOT’s network infrastructure.

Currently the organisation employs ten people in high value engineering jobs. At full commercialisation the company will enable thousands of jobs as SMEs leverage the technology to set up and monetise local networks. The company has also attracted private investment that enables it to continue improving its technology and in preparation for scale. The company is 100% youth owned, 41% black owned and 18% female owned.

ii. SAMEC Engineering - TIA provided the company with an amount of R1 700 959.00 in the 2018/19 financial year out of an approved amount of R7 799 775.00 for the development of an air condition system using thermal storage to cool buildings (industrial and commercial) or temporary structures (e.g. a marquee). Thermal storage happens during off-peak periods when electricity is cheap and that energy is used to cool buildings during high peak periods when electricity is expensive. This will lead to cost savings and load reduction during peak periods.

The first tranche enabled the project to develop a demonstration unit which has been installed at Durban University of Technology and it serves as a data collection point to demonstrate the performance of the unit.

iii. AgriProtein Technologies (Pty) Ltd is a technology start-up company that successfully developed and piloted a nutrient recycling technology (converting organic waste to animal feed protein) to commercialise an insect-based protein feed in the animal feed industry. TIA, through its Bioeconomy Programme extended a loan of R11 968 573 to AgriProtein to carry out phase one of the project known as “Magmeal” as a low cost and environmentally sustainable animal feed.

To-date, AgriProtein has successfully developed an operational Generation 1 (G1) Production Facility employing a total of 141 employees, in Philippi an economically depressed area in Cape Town and has expanded to attract the international market. They secured about $105 million investment in 2018 to fund global expansion.

In a region characterised by low youth employment a total of 57% of permanent employees were under the age of 35. Over R 44 million was spent on local payroll in 2018 and directly supported a total of 139 permanently, decent jobs as December 2018, with a gender split of 30% females and 70 % males.

iv. Mkazi Concepts

TIA funded Mkazi Concepts (Pty) Ltd through the Technology Stations Programme for R502 000 towards development of a Hand-Hygiene Monitor with a RFID (radio frequency identification) badges or wrist bands that track and record on the number of times in-between user-wash per control area. The project falls within the Internet of Things (IoT); and Data Monitoring and Controls in decision making (i.e. Machine Learning) in the primary healthcare environment and other markets such hospitals, mobile health clinics, schools, food industry, etc.

The grant funding subsidised the Technology Station in Electronics hosted at Tshwane University of Technology and the Product Development Technology Station at Central University of Technology for engineering and technology support to assist the client from concept development, first-type prototype to Minimum Viable Product (MVP) with additional financial to conduct a demonstration in an open environment. This was done at a clinic in Windsor East in Gauteng, Johannesburg.

The project provided at least for job opportunities with a locally available intelligent product for the fourth industrial revolution (FIR).

The product intends to increase level of effectiveness of hand hygiene compliance which are currently at 40% nationally due to manual based hand-washing systems and lack of surveillance. In light of COVID 19 the product becomes more important for the implementation and controls of hand-hygiene intervention that are regarded by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as the lowest-costs with highest-impact for effectively preventing infections.

v. Smart Blade - SmartBlade Video

Laryngoscope is a medical device that

harnesses smartphone technology to provide

guided and more cost-effective method for

examining or inserting a tube through the

larynx. The process of inserting the tube

is called endotracheal intubation. SmartBlade

will thus enable single operators of varied skill

levels to intubate difficult airways in a cost-effective way. Currently the cost of video laryngoscopy is prohibitive to the individual clinician, small clinics and ambulance services.

TIA funded SmartBlade [http://smartblade.co.za] to the tune of R484 275 through its Seed Fund Programme for prototype development, premarket sample manufacturing and testing, market research, regulatory compliance research. This resulted in the filing of two (2) provisional patents and a design registration. Prototypes were manufactured and pre-clinical trials conducted using the SmartBlade technology and generated good results. The android app was developed and tested. The SMME managed to secure follow-on funding of R9,5 million from Savant Venture Fund in May 2019 for technology optimisation and commercialisation. In response to COVID 19 they have optimised the Video laryngoscopy technology to incorporate a disposable laryngoscope as a recommended intervention for COVID-19 patients.

 

(2) In line with its approved Strategic Plan 2020-2025 TIA, through its Bio-economy Programme, aims to support indigenous knowledge-based innovation in targeted areas. These include African Traditional Medicines, neutraceuticals, cosmeceuticals and health infusions. In respect of specific products, these will be solicited through TIA’s Call for Proposals during the financial year, from which specific products will be selected for funding.

(3) Yes. The plan will be made available by 15 July 2020.

(4) The current models accord with international best practice in some respects, specifically, the Technology Acquisition and Deployment Fund which was adapted from the Indian model that uses a similar approach to commercialisation. Secondly, the ecosystem approach has been widely used by Innosuisse, the Swiss Innovation Agency responsible for supporting technology innovation together with other like-minded entities around the world, especially in Europe. Thirdly, the SBRI is a model that originates from the USA, subsequently adopted and successfully used by countries such as the UK, Netherlands, India, Australia, and now broadly adopted by the European Union.

The plan nevertheless is largely home-grown, based on TIA’s own understanding and knowledge of the RSA ecosystem, and specific dynamics that are peculiar to a developmental state and a maturing ecosystem.

(5) The Plan, once finalised, will be released publicly.

10 June 2020 - NW1088

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Van Der Walt, Ms D to ask the Minister of Basic Education

What (a) number of teachers (i) were given laptops since 2014 and (ii) are still waiting for laptops and (b) was the total cost of the specified laptops?

Reply:

The Department of Basic Education has not provided teachers with laptops. The Provincial Education Departments were responsible for the provision of laptops to teachers; and are therefore, the custodians of this information. The Honourable Members is also reminded that the Provincial Education Departments are the employers of educators by law.  Therefore. matters related to the provision of teaching support materials are the responsibility of the Provincial Education Departments.

10 June 2020 - NW978

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Van Der Walt, Ms D to ask the Minister of Basic Education

Given the state of the overcrowding in classrooms and the current lack of sufficient budgets, how will her department ensure that social distancing protocols are adhered to in schools during the (a) phasing in and (b) full opening of all schools?

Reply:

·Provide mobile classrooms

(a) (b)The Department of Basic Education developed the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for the Containment and Management of COVID-19, for childcare facilities, schools and school communities, to guide provinces in responding to COVID-19. These include, measures to enforce social distancing for learners; as well as compliance with good hygiene practices to contain and prevent the spread of COVID-19 virus amongst learners. In order to address social distancing protocols during the phasing-in and full opening of schools, provinces are providing mobile classrooms for additional spaces, as well  as identifying additional spaces like school halls to address any additional needs for space.  In addition, a vriety of options for timetabling are being considered.

10 June 2020 - NW1087

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Van Der Walt, Ms D to ask the Minister of Basic Education

Whether learners are allowed to write their National Senior Certificate examinations in a language of their choice; if not, why not; if so, how will this be implemented?

Reply:

In terms of current policy, as articulated in the Regulations on the Conduct, Administration and Management of the National Senior Certificate Examinations,15 (2),  the candidate, unless otherwise stated, must respond to the question paper in the language of learning and teaching. Currently, at the Grade 12 level, the learner is either taught through the medium of English or Afrikaans. Hence, provision is currently made only for learners to respond in English or Afrikaans, in their non-language subjects.

However, the Department is currently investigating the option of providing candidates with question papers that are presented both in the language of learning and teaching and in the mother tongue of the learner. This option will first be piloted in either Grade 10 or Grade 11; and based on the outcome in this pilot, it will considered for implementation in the  high stakes Grade 12 examination.                 

10 June 2020 - NW1024

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Van Der Walt, Ms D to ask the Minister of Basic Education

(1)       Whether her department received any funds for the Expanded Public Works Programme in the past four financial years; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details (2) whether any of the specified funds were earmarked for capital and/or infrastructure-related projects; if so, (a) what are the names of the projects, (b) where are the specified projects situated, (c) what is the value of each project and (d) what number of jobs have been created by each project. (3) what process was followed to appoint project (a) implementers and (b) consultants in each case; (4) whether funds were transferred to project implementers in a lump sum or through progress payment; (5) whether any projects have been delayed due to maladministration or corruption; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, (a) which projects have been affected and (b) what action has been taken in each case?

Reply:

DATE OF PUBLICATION OF INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 29/05/2020

INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 18/2020

1024. Mrs D van der Walt (DA) to ask the Minister of Basic Education:

(1)       Whether her department received any funds for the Expanded Public Works Programme in the past four financial years; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details

(1) EPWP funds received are as follows:

2016/17

R369 045 000.00

2017/18

R112 997 000.00

2018/19

R0.00

2019/20

R0.00

(2) The funds were allocated for Kha Ri Gude Food handlers

(a) Not applicable

(b) Not applicable

(c) Not applicable

(d) Not applicable

 

(3) Not applicable

(4) Not applicable

(5) Not applicable                    

10 June 2020 - NW936

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Breedt, Ms T to ask the Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development

Whether her department awarded any tenders connected to the Covid-19 pandemic; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what (a) are the names of the businesses to whom these tenders were awarded, (b) are the amounts of each tender awarded and (c) was the service and/or product to be supplied by each business; (2) whether there was any deviation from the standard supply chain management procedures in the awarding of the tenders; if so, (a) why and (b) what are the relevant details in each case; (3) what was the reason for which each specified business was awarded the specified tender; (4) whether she will make a statement on the matter?

Reply:

1. No. The position taken by the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development was to provide a COVID-19 Support Relief to qualifying Small-holder and Communal farmers. This was a grant process where qualifying farmers would be issued a voucher. The department procured Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) through either a price quotation process or Transversal Contracts in line with National Treasury Instruction Note 08 of 2019/2020 and Instruction Note 05 of 2020/2021: Emergency Procurement in Response to the National State of Disaster.

(a),(b),(c) Falls away.

2. No.

(a),(b) Falls away.

3. Falls away.

4. No.

09 June 2020 - NW958

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Graham, Ms SJ to ask the Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure

(1)(a) What role did she play in the decision-making process around the recent emergency upgrading of the Beitbridge border post fence and (b) who gave the final approval for the procurement to proceed; (2) whether she was given regular updates on the progress of the recent emergency upgrading of the specified fence; if so, what action did she take when red flags started to emerge?

Reply:

The Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure:

(1)(a) My role was limited to issuing a directive for the emergency securing of the South African Border to the Director General, Chief Financial Officer and the Deputy Director General: Construction Management. The first focus was on the Beitbridge Border Post and identified hotspots at this borderline between South Africa and Zimbabwe.

(b) The delegated authority for tender approval was the National Bid Adjudication Committee (NBAC).

(2) I received regular updates on the construction until completion. I also requested the Auditor-General of South Africa to do an independent audit and also asked the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure’s Internal Anti-Corruption Unit to do an investigation.

09 June 2020 - NW856

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Graham, Ms SJ to ask the Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure

With reference to the price paid by her department for the recent upgrading of the Beitbridge border post fence, the quotation of which was based on a 2016 pricing which was amortised to bring it in line with 2020 pricing, (a) how did the contractor cover the additional security required during the construction, which was substantial and not originally costed into the quote, without changing the cost price and (b) what were the details of the mitigating factors for the high cost of the upgrading of the specified fence in the 2016 quote, when the cost of the construction was justified in part on the basis that it was a fast-track job which required additional workers and plant hire to meet the time frame?

Reply:

The Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure:

a) Department of Public Works and Infrastructure (DPWI) informed me that the matter of security on all material remained the responsibility of the contractor and the contractor covered the costs. The South African National Defence Force (SANDF) remains responsible for securing the border.

b) The Department further informed me the mitigating measure was premised on the fact that the tender went through a competitive bidding process. With reference to the published tenders on the DPWI website, the tender for Beitbridge land port of entry (WCS052500) was awarded in October 2016. The costing was also premised on 2016 baseline. The rates are complex as they are inclusive, and the contractor covered the costs.

09 June 2020 - NW886

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Clarke, Ms M to ask the Minister of Transport

Whether his department will offer any form of Covid-19 financial or other relief to small businesses; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details; (2) whether the Covid-19 financial or other relief will only be allocated to qualifying small businesses according to the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Act, Act 53 of 2003, as amended; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, (a) on what statutory grounds and/or provisions does he or his department rely to allocate Covid-19 financial or other relief only to small businesses according to the specified Act and (b) what form of Covid-19 financial or other relief, if any, will be made available to other small businesses?

Reply:

1. It is unquestionable that the Covid-19 pandemic has brought about and at some point exacerbated the challenges faced by the country and the world in totality. Thus, it is necessary that integrated solutions are found and implemented to navigate through the Covid-19 virus and its impact to the overall society. As such the South African Government is providing leadership by putting in place the integrated mechanisms to help to directly and indirectly deal with this unprecedented pandemic and its impact to the economy. This is exhibited by stimulus package announced by our President and is further unpacked below.

In general and currently, the Department is not intending to create a special Covid-19 financial relief fund for small businesses in the transport sector because these entities registered through the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) are eligible and qualify to apply to existing Government Covid-19 relief programmes. However, the Government will, through the Department of Small Business Development (DSBD) provide relief to all SMMEs. This financial relief is provided through the R500billion Covid-19 relief financial interventions highlighted in the preceding paragraph. It is intended to provide business owners particularly of small enterprises with funding or payment relief and opportunities to help them navigate and thrive through this tough time.

These programmes are and not limited to:

  • Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) Covid-19 relief fund is to benefit all employees and employers including small enterprises functioning within the transport sector. This is an emergency relief for employers to be able to pay employees who have been temporarily laid off as a result of the COVID-19 lockdown measures;
  • The Department of Small Business Development (DSBD) Covid-19 relief fund is for businesses, which are negatively affected, directly or indirectly, due to the Coronavirus pandemic. It is important to note that the creation and existence of this Department is to put in place mechanisms that will create an environment in which small enterprises across the economy of South Africa inclusive of the transport s sector operate in a fair and conducive environment;
  • The DSBD Business Growth Resilience Facilities is for enterprises geared to take advantage of supply opportunities resulting from the Coronavirus pandemic or shortage of goods in the local market.
  • SMME Relief Finance Scheme. This is a soft-loan funding for businesses negatively impacted by the COVID-19 virus for all businesses with a turnover of less than R300 million; and
  • Small Enterprise Finance Agency (SEFA) Debt Restructuring is for businesses that are currently Sefa-funded are able to apply for a moratorium on loan repayments if the COVID-19 virus has negatively affected them.

An exception is with the Taxi Industry as you are all aware that it provides public transport for approximately 60% of passengers. As part of the relief measures for small businesses in distress, taxis financed by the National Taxi Finance administered by SEFA will be granted a 3 months repayment holiday. The dire effects of the lockdown on the taxi industry is noted and intergovernmental consultations on a Taxi Industry Relief Efforts are at an advanced stage. The Departments of Transport, Small Business Development, Employment and Labour, Trade Industry and Competition as well as National Treasury have agreed to support the industry and are currently looking at various modalities of assistance. At the time the lockdown was declared, we were in the process of finalizing our plans for the hosting of the National Taxi Indaba, which will be held sometime later this year. The aim is to address a number of critical economic issues confronting the industry. Among the key issues to be considered by the Indaba is a sustainable economic empowerment model for the taxi industry. This will include a public transport-funding model, which must include a possible subsidy regime, in which the taxi industry is a full participant. It is of paramount importance to note that the SANTACO, the governing structure of the taxi industry in the country under the governance of the Department, announced a R3.5 billion relief funds to help cushion the industry through the Covid-19 pandemic.

In view of the above Government interventions, it is important for Government to pool limited resources to ensure most enterprises are cushioned through these tough and unprecedented times. All Government interventions should aim towards providing integrated Covid-19 financial reliefs. In addition, it is vital to avoid duplicating efforts and ensure that double dipping by individuals and enterprises is avoided at all cost. Secondly, the Department will continue to support efforts of creating a conducive environment for small enterprises in the transport sector. Thus, the legislation of Government including the Broad-Based Black Empowerment (B-BBEE) Act 53 of 203 as amended will be applied to help small enterprises and to facilitate transformation of the transport sector. I must acknowledge that not all these Covid-19 virus relief funds may be enough. In the next phase, Government must look at options to increasing these financial support mechanisms to rebuild and stimulate the economy.

(2) whether the Covid-19 financial or other relief will only be allocated to qualifying small businesses according to the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Act, Act 53 of 2003, as amended; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, (a) on what statutory grounds and/or provisions does he or his department rely to allocate Covid-19 financial or other relief only to small businesses according to the specified Act and (b) what form of Covid-19 financial or other relief, if any, will be made available to other small businesses?

Response

For more details, see question 1 response above. Of course, my Department would like to emphasize that the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa and supported by laws such the B-BBEE Act will be implemented to create an inclusive growing economy and to transform the transport sector particularly the aviation, road freight and maritime industries. The Covid-19 crisis provides an opportunity for the Department to work towards speeding-up the process to re-instituting the Transport Sector B-BBEE Council to facilitate transformation of the transport sector so that equal opportunities are created for black women, black people with disabilities and black youth. The process to re-institute the Council is at the advance stage. The Council will spearhead the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of B-BBEE and transformation in the transport sector. It is important to note that Government will not compromise the provision of the constitution and will continue to ensure compliance to relevant legislation.

Let me take this opportunity to provide my total support to my colleague, the Minister of Tourism, Ms Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane in support of the Black Business Council for implementing the B-BBEE Act 53 of 2003 as amended even though there are some distractors in the country. The intention of this Government is to achieve the envisioned 2030 goals set by the National Development Plan that 9 out of 10 new jobs will be generated by micro, small and medium businesses. Hence, all our efforts should make use of every opportunity inclusive of the Covid-19 crisis to transform the overall economic society of South Africa and create a conducive environment for micro, small and medium enterprises to help or economy.

09 June 2020 - NW933

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Mey, Mr P to ask the Minister of Transport

(1)Whether his department awarded any tenders connected to the Covid-19 pandemic; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what (a) are the names of the businesses to whom these tenders were awarded, (b) are the amounts of each tender awarded and (c) was the service and/or product to be supplied by each business; (2) whether there was any deviation from the standard supply chain management procedures in the awarding of the tenders; if so, (a) why and (b) what are the relevant details in each case; (3) what was the reason for which each specified business was awarded the specified tender; (4) whether he will make a statement on the matter?

Reply:

The Department did not foresee the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic at the commencement of the previous financial year and had therefore not budgeted for the pandemic nor planned for any tenders in the Annual Procurement Plan related hereto. However, the department had followed all the available prescripts by the National Treasury in the COVID-19 procurement processes.

Quotations were sourced in line with the provisions of the relevant Treasury Instructions and a process of a multiple award approach was utilised to meet the necessary volumes requested in the distribution for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and Wear. Accordingly the following suppliers were part of the multiple award total R24 731 292.41

i. Ecko-Green Environmental Services

ii. C Square Consumer Connectedness

iii. Mistralog

The following Products were supplied by the companies in this award:

i. PENDO-FOG disinfectant fogging machine;

ii. 20/25 Liter Disinfectant refil for the PENDO-FOG

iii. 1 Liter Sanitizers bottles

iv. 20 Liter Sanitizer refill

v. PPE Disposable Coveralls

vi. Surgical Masks

vii. Surgival gloves (only in round 1)

(2) There was no deviation made on the standard Emergency Procurment Prescripts

a) He reason for acquisition of the products was that an urgent intervention was required to assist in providing the taxi industry (driver’s and Marshall) with COVID-19 related goods, to curb the spead of the virus in the Public transport environment.

b) Quotations were sourced from multiple companies, evaluated in terms of normal procurement prescripts relating to CSD registration, tax compliance etc, and awarded as a multiple award to curb cost. There has been full compliance with the National Treasury Prescripts in terms of National Treasury Instruction Note Nr.3 of 2016/201/Section 8.1 and 8.2

(3) Companies first had to comply with prescribed procurement processes, including registration on CSD and tax compliance. Qualified bidders were then evaluated on price, per specific item.

(4) If deemed necessary by the house.

09 June 2020 - NW925

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Mulder, Dr CP to ask the Minister of Communications

1. Whether her department awarded any tenders connected to the Covid-19 pandemic; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what (a) are the names of the businesses to whom these tenders were awarded, (b) are the amounts of each tender awarded and (c) was the service and/or product to be supplied by each business; (2) whether there was any deviation from the standard supply chain management procedures in the awarding of the tenders; if so, (a) why and (b) what are the relevant details in each case; (3) what was the reason for which each specified business was awarded the specified tender; (4) whether she will make a statement on the matter?

Reply:

1. The Department did not award any tenders connected to the Covid-19 pandemic. Items procured such as masks, gloves, hand sanitisers and decontamination of premises (office buildings) were below R500 000 and supply chain processes were followed.

(a) None

(b) N/A

(c) N/A

2. No deviations from the standard supply chain management procedures.

(a) None

(b) N/A

3. N/A

4. N/A

MR J MTHEMBU, MP

ACTING MINISTER OF COMMUNICATIONS AND DIGITAL TECHNOLOGIES

09 June 2020 - NW959

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Graham, Ms SJ to ask the Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure

(a) What extraordinary expenditure has her Department incurred as a result of Covid-19 since the start of the new financial year, (b) from which budget and/or line item was the money sourced, (c) who authorised the expenditure and (d) what is the impact of the expenditure on the programme from which the money was taken?

Reply:

The Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure:

a) The Department of Public Works and Infrastructure, including its Property Management Trading Entity (PMTE), collectively referred to as “the Department”, has incurred, and continues to incur, both ordinary and extraordinary expenditure in line with its mandate the provision of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE), the cleaning of its facilities, decontamination of facilities (including Presidency and courts) and quarantine facilities as requested by Department of Health (DOH). To date, an amount of R 47 049 676 has been spent.

b) The money was sourced from various line items of the budget after taking into consideration the lower expenditure on items due to the lockdown. These included budget items on travel, recruitment, goods and services and infrastructure projects due to low or no expenditure due to lockdown. The funds were shifted in terms of the Disaster Management Act and its Regulations.

c) The expenditure was authorised in line with the Department’s finance delegations of authority at various branches at Head Office and the eleven (11) Regional Offices.

d) The impact is negligible, if any, as funds were shifted from programmes that had no activities due to inter alia the restrictions imposed by the national lockdown.

09 June 2020 - NW817

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Majozi, Ms Z to ask the Minister of Communications

Whether her department has given a concise definition for the term 5G or Fifth Generation wireless communications systems as there appears to be no standardised form of the term; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the full relevant details?

Reply:

5G is the fifth generation of wireless technology network adopted by 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP), a standards organisation which develops protocols for mobile telecommunications. 5G is a new globally accepted standard of technology after 3G, 4G and LTE/LTE advanced. 5G is identified by the following use cases: enhanced mobile broadband communications, massive machine type communications, ultra-reliable and low latency communications, and Internet of Things that virtually connects everything and everyone.

 

MR J MTHEMBU, MP

ACTING MINISTER OF COMMUNICATIONS AND DIGITAL TECHNOLOGIES