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17 December 2020 - NW2831

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Komane, Ms RN to ask the Minister of Home Affairs

What has he found to be causing delays with issuing of identity documents?

Reply:

When level 5 lockdown was implemented on 27 March 2020, there were approximately 20 000 identity documents applications at the Department’s Back Office processing facility.

When the Department re-opened to capture first time applications, it was initially necessary for operations to be conducted with the most essential staff only to adhere to the limitations of the Disaster Management Act protocols (social distancing, wearing of masks, washing of hands as well as ensuring sufficient ventilation).

Furthermore, the Department’s operational facilities are generally open plan offices, consequently, as and when there are confirmed Covid-19 cases, the Department has to release officials who were in contact with a positive case, who must then isolate and are not available for duty, which also causes delays in the finalising and issuing of Identity documents.

END

17 December 2020 - NW2680

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Khanyile, Ms AT to ask the Minister of Home Affairs

What are the details of the steps his department will take to address the backlog caused by the halting of certain services due to the national lockdown to curb the spread of COVID-19?

Reply:

  • We made an announcement through a government notice on 24 October 2020 to resume all services except Citizenship applications at the Civic Service Branch of the Department. The Department thereby issued a circular to all staff members, regarding Administrative Protocols for the Lockdown, Containment and management of the COVID-19 in the Department under lockdown level 1.
  • As a result, the Department has recalled 100% staff capacity, mainly in areas where there are backlogs in order to eliminate such backlogs. Under this circumstance, strict adherence to the lock down level 1 protocols is practiced to contain the spread of COVID 19 by ensuring that officials adhere to the protocols in the workplace by maintaining social distancing, adhering to personal hygiene practices (wearing of masks, sanitizing, washing of hands etc.), and further ensuring sufficient ventilation in all workspaces.

 

  • The Department furthermore engaged its stakeholders in the value chain of its products and services, in particular GPW (Government Printing Works) and Skynet courier services, to work overtime during the week as well as over the weekends to assist the Department in eliminating such backlogs.
  • Moreover, the Department has a Business Recovery Plan to deal with backlogs accumulated during lockdown period.

END

17 December 2020 - NW2483

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Mabika, Mr M to ask the Minister of Home Affairs

Since opening international borders under the risk-based approach travel regulations released by national government on 30 September 2020, (a) what total number of applications for business travel has his department received from (i) Germany, (ii) the United Kingdom, (iii) the United States of America, (iv) France, (v) the Netherlands, (vi) Switzerland and (vii) Japan, (b) what total number of the specified applications were (i) approved and (ii) rejected and (c) what was the average turnaround time for each of the listed countries?

Reply:

a) The total number of applications for business travel received from 1 October to 11 November 2020 was 8,878. Applications are not separated, or processed according to nationality.

b) (i) Approved: 6,778. This figure includes business people including South African permanent residents and long-term visa holders who used this e-mail address. 2,100 applications were in process up until the 11 November 2020.

(ii) Rejected: None. Those who did not meet the requirements were requested to submit outstanding information and their cases were approved once the information was received.

c) All cases are finalised between 1 to 10 days.

 

END

17 December 2020 - NW2768

Profile picture: van der Merwe, Ms LL

van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Home Affairs

(1)What total number of staff members do the (a) Standing Committee for Refugee Affairs and (b) Refugee Appeal Board have in each province; (2) (a) what total number of appeals are the specified (i) committee and (ii) board currently seized with and (b) how long will it take to clear the backlog of cases that must be finalised; (3) (a) what total number of asylum seekers and/or refugee appeals were turned down over the past 10 years and (b)(i) how did his department ensure that those who were asked to leave the country did in fact do so and (ii) what number of the specified individuals were deported?

Reply:

1(a) Standing Committee for Refugee Affairs (SCRA) has a Chairperson and 2 members at head office Pretoria (3). Admin Support staff at head office Pretoria is a total twelve (12).

There are no SCRA members at the regions, members at the head office from time to time visit the five centres on rotational basis., process is underway to appoint 2 Members for Desmond Tutu RRO; 1 for Cape Town and PE RRO; 1 for Durban RRO for a period of two years to attend to the backlog. Over and above that 2 additional Members shall be appointed for a period of five years to be based at the SCRA head office.

(1)(b) The Refugee Appeals Board (currently Refugee Appeals Authority) have the following staff in numbers :

  • Pretoria: 1 Member and Chairperson and 13 Admin staff/Officials,
  • Cape Town: 1 Member
  • Musina, Port Elizabeth and Durban have no staff

(2)(a)(i) SCRA has 29579 cases as at 11 November 2020

(2)(a)(ii) The total number of appeals is 123 424 as at 18 September 2020.

(2)(b)(i) It will take about 2 years to clear the SCRA backlog.

(2)(b)(ii) Based on the Auditor General’s 2019/2020 report if the current capacity of RAASA remains the same, it would take more than 60 years to clear the backlog. However currently, a plan is in place to increase the Authority’s capacity with 36 members, this will mean that the backlog can be cleared within 4 years.

(3)(a)(i) 317245

(3)(a)(ii) The total number of appeals rejected over the last 10 years is 13 572.

(3)(b)(i) Failed Asylum Seekers are either given an order to leave the Republic of South Africa or are detained for the purposes of deportation.

(3)(b)(ii) The records of failed Asylum Seekers who have been deported is as follows :

2015 - 1

2016 - 113

2017 - 561

2018- 110

2019 - 69

2020 - 22

It is only in recent years that we have been doing a breakdown of the analysis of deportees prior status.

END

17 December 2020 - NW2928

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van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Home Affairs

Following renewed attacks on truck drivers, what (a) progress has his department made to identify all undocumented and/or illegal migrants within the borders of the Republic and (b) has he done, in partnership with the Minister of Labour, to address the concerns of South African truck drivers and South Africans in general that illegal and/or undocumented migrants are preferred for low skilled or no skilled job opportunities?

Reply:

a) The department continues through its inspectorate to actively conduct inspections and operations in partnership with other law enforcement agencies to deal with all transgressors of immigration legislation. The department has continued with its enforcement and deportation functions throughout the period of the lockdown.

b) With regard to the issues relating to migrant employment the Minister of Employment and Labour and the Minister of Home Affairs co-chair an inter-ministerial committee on migration which is preparing a programme to address these issues which include, amongst others, policy directives, international benchmarking and enforcement responses.

END

17 December 2020 - NW2927

Profile picture: van der Merwe, Ms LL

van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Home Affairs

(1)Following his comments that his department led by the Acting Director-General, Mr Jackie McKay, did due diligence to ensure that the self-proclaimed prophet Shepherd Bushiri and his wife Mary Bushiri were not on the plane with the President of Malawi, what does he make of reports that in fact his statements to Parliament on Tuesday 17 November were not correct and that the Bushiris did leave on the plane with the Malawian President; (2) whether he will launch an investigation into whether any officials of his department were involved in the unlawful exit of the Bushiris from the Republic; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the details of the investigation that will be conducted?

Reply:

1. Honourable member, I told the committee what I know according to information at my disposal.  If some people have information to the contrary, then they are duty bound to bring it out into the open.  I suggest you approach them to provide proof of their statements. Honestly, I don’t know what they are talking about.

2. The total investigation around the whole Bushiri matter are being conducted by a Joint Team of the whole Justice, Peace and Crime Prevention Cluster. When it is completed, the country shall be informed accordingly.

END

17 December 2020 - NW2897

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Tito, Ms LF to ask the Minister of Home Affairs

What number of offices of his department in each province are capacitated with the system of GENDER maker to assist transgender people to change their gender on their identity documents?

Reply:

All 412 Offices of the Department of Home Affairs are capacitated to receive applications for the category of Alteration of Sex Description and Sex Status and are henceforth dispatched to Head Office for further processing. There is a back office unit at head office, Rectifications and Amendments Unit that implements the gender marker on the system to amend the status of transgender people by changing their gender on their respective identity documents, provided the applicants meet the requirements as per the regulations and standard operating procedures has been followed

END

17 December 2020 - NW2587

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van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Home Affairs

(1)Whether he has found that certain persons (names furnished) are within the borders of the Republic illegally; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the further relevant details; (2) (a) how did the illegality arise and (b) which officials will be held accountable; (3) what are the details of his plans to deal with the dire challenges of the immigration system such as (a) the ever-growing number of undocumented migrants within the Republic’s borders, (b) reports that illegal migrants are favoured for jobs, (c) corruption within his department which leads to the selling of South African documentation such as IDs and other permits and (d) an abuse of the refugee and asylum seeker system by some individuals?

Reply:

(1) They were found to have been issued in June 2016 with permanent residence permits in terms of a provision in the Immigration Act 13 of 2020 they did not qualify for, not having met its requirements. The application did not, inter alia, comprise of proof of the financial guarantees (prescribed minimum net worth in the amount of R12 million plus an undertaking that the applicant will pay R120 000 to the Director-General).

(2)(a) A Non-Profit organisation was used to process the application, despite the fact that it is not regarded as a business.

(2)(b) The investigation is proceeding into the application and adjudication methods and disciplinary proceedings will be initiated on completion of the evidence collection process.

(3)(a) Inspectorate is engaged nationally in the detection of illegal immigration activity through investigations, joint operations with other law enforcement agencies and inspections of entities including businesses.

(3)(b) It is not apparent what reports are being referred to and therefore the question is not substantiated.

(3)(c) In mitigation, the Department has prioritised modernisation of its visa and permitting system to ensure that all priority categories of face value documents are subject to independent clearance phases through the use of an electronic Visa Adjudication System (VAS). Ongoing development of the VAS system is being undertaken to incorporate all categories of visas and permits and thus eliminate manual files and work processes.

(3)(d) The abuse of the asylum system in the main stems from porous borders and the delays in finalizing asylum applications. In this regard the department is finalizing the operationalization of the BMA, whilst amendments were made on the Refugee Act to allow proper capacity at SCRA and RAASA to be able to conclude asylum applications within the prescribed turnaround times.

END

17 December 2020 - NW2488

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Roos, Mr AC to ask the Minister of Home Affairs

What (a) is the total backlog of (i) asylum applications of asylum seekers, (ii) the Refugee Appeal Board and (iii) the Standing Committee for Refugee Affairs and (b) total number of cases have been finalised in the period 1 April 2020 to 30 September 2020 by (i) the Refugee Appeal Board and (ii) the Standing Committee for Refugee Affairs?

Reply:

(a)(i) As at 30 June 2020 there were 3656 cases at RSDO level.

(a)(ii) The total number of cases at the Refugee Appeal Board (Now Refugee Appeals Authority) is 123 424 as at 18 September 2020

MONTHS

 

APRIL 2020 TO SEPTEMBER 2020 

   

No. of Cases heard

No. of Cases finalized and decisions issued

No. of cases Confirmed as unfounded

No of cases upheld

No of condonations dismissed

No of condonations granted

No of no show cases

No. of Cases referred back to RROs (RSDO)

No of cases cancelled

DESMOND TUTU

 

0

376

14

34

0

0

5

115

323

MUSINA

 

0

100

51

12

0

0

6

0

31

DURBAN

 

26

308

39

61

0

0

1

0

207

CAPE TOWN

 

137

114

21

11

0

0

0

0

82

PORT ELIZABETH

 

30

83

31

9

0

0

0

0

43

TOTAL

 

193

981

156

127

0

0

12

115

686

(a)(iii) The Standing Committee for Refugee Affairs (SCRA) has a backlog of 38185 cases for all the five centre with the majority of cases being at the Desmond Tutu RRO. These are active cases.

(b)(i) The Refugee Appeal Board (Now Refugee Appeals Authority) finalised 981 cases.

(b)(ii) SCRA has finalised 4672 cases.

NO OF CASES

REVIEWED

UPHELD

SET ASIDE

REFERRED BACK

TOTAL FINALIZED

COMMENT

4672

4096

400

176

4672

These cases were only attended to at the Desmond Tutu RRO during the level 3-2 lock down.

END

17 December 2020 - NW2739

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Roos, Mr AC to ask the Minister of Home Affairs

(1)What (a) number of offices of his department have been offline and unavailable to render services at any time during the month of October 2020 due to the system downtime and (b) has been the total number of downtime in hours for all offices of his department during the month of October 2020 due to (i) State Information and Technology Agency system downtime, (ii) power outages, (iii) faulty office equipment, (iv) last-mile connectivity problems and/or (v) any other specified reason; (2) whether his department has any mechanism in place to advise citizens that any specific office is offline so that they don’t waste time unnecessarily travelling to an office that is offline; if not, (3) whether there are any plans to introduce such an early warning system to prevent citizens from wasting time and money travelling to an office that is offline; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the details of the plans?

Reply:

(1)(a) There were about 7 times in October where system was offline, impacting all Live Capture offices nationwide and there were also incidents affecting individual offices which caused downtime and these include photo booth not working, camera functionality etc.

(1)(b) The current report configuration does not store the downtime in hours but SITA has been requested to create this reports effective 1st of December 2020.

(1)(b)(i) State Information and Technology Agency system downtime,

There are a couple of issues that cause offline or refer to an office as offline. It can be infrastructure issues like cable theft, dependent on as external service provider, Server issues, power outages and application issues or office equipment issues.

(1)(b)(ii) power outages

A consolidated report from SITA is not available for this metric. SITA has been requested to make this report configuration effective 1st of December 2020. There were approximately 20 calls logged for office equipment like FLO (Front Line Officer), Photobooth and some scanners, which did not affect the whole office operations entirely.

(1)(b)(iii) faulty office equipment,

Workstations hardware for Live Capture System (Modernised offices) are actively supported through a 3 year warranty system; and are refreshed every 4 years as per the Tech Refresh Plan. When a workstation required replacement, there is a process to replace computers and peripheral devices that are stored for such purpose both at Head Office and Provincial Head Quarters.

(1)(b)(iv) last-mile connectivity problems and/or (v) any other specified reason

A consolidated report from SITA is not available for this metric. SITA has been requested to make this report configuration effective 1st of December 2020.

(1)(b)(v) Not applicable.

(2) No there is no mechanism in place to proactively inform citizens before travelling as outages are not known upfront or predictable. However Provincial Managers do engage local media to inform Public where major downtimes are experienced and clients are redirected to other offices

(3) The Department is still investigating various options to proactively engage citizens regarding the state of offices.

END

17 December 2020 - NW2946

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Roos, Mr AC to ask the Minister of Home Affairs

With reference to the Home Affairs office in Nigel which was offline from 13/11/2020 until 18/11/2020 due to a faulty data line, (a) why did it take four working days to repair the faulty data line, (b) which entity and/or service provider is responsible for resolving issues on the data line, (c) what is the resolution turnaround time on a faulty data line as per the service level agreement with the responsible entity and/or service provider, (d) what penalties and/or actions will be taken against the responsible entity and/or service provider in cases where the resolution time exceeded the service level agreement time and (e) why was a mobile unit not provided outside the office to assist citizens while the office was offline for four days?

Reply:

(a) SITA was notified on Friday 13 November 2020 about the faulty data line in Nigel office and were supposed to dispatch the Telkom technician to the site but that did not materialise. Later that day after a remote diagnosis SITA called the DHA Regional IT Officer informing her that there is no sound from the office’s router, they suspected that it was switched off and then asked her to confirm if it had power. It was confirmed to SITA that power was on for the router and pictures were sent as proof and that is when the latter confirmed that it implies that there was nothing wrong on their side with reference number: Ref 20894281

On Monday,16 November 2020 the Regional IT Officer revisited Nigel to check the equipment in liaison with the departmental HQ networks technician and that is when it was confirmed that indeed the router was not responding as the Network Card slot was dead. The card slot was changed but unfortunately that slot was not configured as the password to configure was not working, all passwords were tried and still did not work. On the 17 November 2020, the networks technician managed to crack the password, did new configurations on the other slot and inserted the router as they had removed it on 16 November 2020 and that caused a delay. The matter was resolved late and thus clients could not be assisted and were only attended to on 18 November 2020.

(b) SITA and the internal DHA IT Infrastructure team were responsible for resolving the problem.

(c) In Terms of the Service Level Agreements between SITA and DHA the following are adhered to:

  • Mean time to respond is 4 Hours
  • Mean Time to Resolve is 16 Hours

(d) The penalties are applied when Service Level Agreements are not met by the service provider in this case the responsibility was on both DHA IT and State Information Technology Agency and the contracts management team will advise on the penalties to be levied if any, due to shared responsibilities.

(e) The allocated and limited number of mobile units have a set schedule and were already deployed as confirmed with various stakeholders as they relieve the offices when there is high influx of clients for management of queues.

END

17 December 2020 - NW2677

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van der Merwe, Ms LL to ask the Minister of Home Affairs

What (a) total number of temporary asylum seeker permits are currently active as at 1 November 2020 and (b) total number of asylum seekers and/or refugee appeals were turned down over the past 10 years?

Reply:

a) Based on data extracted 11 November 2020 there are 175 461 persons with section 22 permits active.

b) The total number of appeals that were turned down over the past 10 years is 13 572 (as at 12 November 2020).

c) 

END

16 December 2020 - NW2954

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Basson, Mr LJ to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

(1)Whether, with reference to her department's National Norms and Standards for Domestic Water and Sanitation Services: Version 3, published in Gazette Notice 982 in the Government Gazette 41100 of 8 September 2017 (details furnished), the status of the specified norms and standards is currently legal; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details; (2) whether she will furnish Mr L J Basson with a (a) roadmap and (b) timeline on the date the public participation process will commence in which comments on the norms and standards will be sought; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details; (3) what is the envisaged date when her department intends to (a) finalise and (b) approve the norms and standards for implementation?

Reply:

(1) The status of the National Norms and Standards for Domestic Water and Sanitation Services: Version 3 published in Gazette Notice 982 in the Government Gazette 41100 of 8 September 2017 for public comments has not been finalized and therefore it is not legal as yet. There were numerous concerns raised by stakeholders and such concerns were found to be material through a legal opinion that was sought by the Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) after the consultation process was finalized.

While the DWS is reviewing the National Norms and Standards for Domestic Water and Sanitation Services, the regulations relating to compulsory National Standards for Water and Sanitation Supply GNR.509 of 08 June 2001, issued in terms of the Water Services Act, Act 108 of 1997 remain legally applicable. Therefore, there is no lacuna in law.

(2) A roadmap and timelines on the date of the public participation process will be furnished to the Honourable Member once the norms and standard have been finalised.

(3) It is envisaged that the review or amendment of the norms and standards will be finalized and approved in the next financial year (2021/22).

16 December 2020 - NW2617

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De Freitas, Mr MS to ask the Minister of Tourism

With reference to her Budget Vote speech, Vote No 33, on 22 July 2020, what (a) is (i) she and (ii) her department doing to mitigate the gross domestic product contraction and job losses, (b) are her department’s plans in this regard and (c) are the (i) time frames, (ii) timelines and (iii) deadlines in this regard?

Reply:

a) (i) and (ii)The Department, working with the sector has followed government’s risk-adjusted strategy for the phased re-opening of economic activities.

b) and (c) (i),(ii) and (iii)The associated timelines are contained in the tabled Strategic Plan 2020/21 – 2024/25 as well as the reviewed and retabled Annual Performance Plans 2020/21 – 2022/23.

16 December 2020 - NW3066

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Mohlala, Ms MR to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

With regard to the District Development Model being touted as a panacea to address the dysfunctionality of the implementation of the Intergovernmental Relations and Co-operative Governance Framework to deal with concurrent functions of water resources and water services provision in the Republic, what are the relevant details of the (a) risks and (b) mitigation strategies that have been identified by her department to ensure the successful implementation of the District Development Model?

Reply:

Honourable Member, the District Development Model (DDM) will go a long way in ensuring an operational model for improved cooperative governance that promotes the need to shift to a joint development planning approach

The model was launched last year and as we were piloting it in a number of districts, the COVID-19 pandemic befell us and altered some of our plans.

The Departments of Water and Sanitation intends to take advantage of the model and work closely with COGTA to ensure its successful implementation. It intends to employ the following strategies:

  • the Department of Water and Sanitation working with COGTA, through the Municipal Infrastructure Support Agency (MISA), will establish a Project Management Unit at a Provincial level that shall support all District Municipalities to roll out the Model.
  • DWS intends to work with District Municipalities in the planning and implementation of Infrastructure Projects, with MISA assisting in a support role for Monitoring and Evaluation of the DDM.
  • It will utilise integrated planning to address challenges of misalignment of plans of all Sector Plans, to enable all spheres to focus on One Plan at District Levels, financial resources appropriated correctly for each financial year outputs is crucial.
  • Identification of priorities over five-year term period, and development of integrated plans.
  • Long term (10 years) implementation plans that are aligned to the National Water and Sanitation Master Plan should also be developed
  • A Human Resource Plan to be developed for each District Municipality and Water Services Authorities in relation to critical skills including technical, financial and project management
  • Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) must be encouraged for possible funding of the catalytic infrastructure projects.

16 December 2020 - NW3013

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De Freitas, Mr MS to ask the Minister of Tourism

(a) What (i) criteria and (ii) scientific data are used to create the red list of high-risk countries from which persons are permitted to travel to the Republic, (b) on what date is the list updated and (c) what criteria determines that the list needs to be updated?

Reply:

The Department of Tourism does not handle scientific data dealing with the determination of red list of high-risk countries. The matter falls within the mandate of the Department of Health.

(a)– (c) Not applicable

16 December 2020 - NW3065

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Mohlala, Ms MR to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

In light of the fact that water resources management in the Republic is reliant on the ability of establishing catchment management agencies to devolve resource management from national to regional, what are the reasons that the Republic only has two established catchment management agencies?

Reply:

The Department of Water and Sanitation had initially planned to establish nineteen (19) Catchment Management Agencies (CMAs) but this number was later rationalised to nine (9) in March 2012.

In line with the 2013 Presidential Review Committee on State-owned Entities, the DWS has continued to review institutional arrangements for water sector entities, taking into account a number of principles in analysing the options to improve operational efficiencies and reduce costs through consolidation and rationalisation of CMAs.

I have therefore recently approved a reconfiguration and establishment of six (6) CMAs as follows:

  • Inkomati-Pongola.
  • Breede-Gouritz-Olifants.
  • Limpopo-Olifants.
  • Mhlatuze-Umzimkhulu.
  • Vaal-Orange.
  • Mzimvubu-Tsitsikama.

Further, I have appointed Advisory Committees for the Breede-Gouritz-Olifants, Limpopo-Olifants, Mhlatuze-Umzimkhulu and Vaal-Orange CMAs in terms of section 81(3) of the National Water Act (Act 36 of 1998). The responsibility of the Advisory Committees is to recommend a list of organs of state and bodies representing different sectors within the Water Management Areas of the CMAs which should be represented on the Governing Boards of the proposed CMAs.

16 December 2020 - NW2745

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Moteka, Mr PG to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

On what date is it envisaged that her department will finish building the incomplete Reconstruction and Development Project Houses at Ward 20 at Magolaneng in the Makhuduthamaga Local Municipality, Limpopo, as the houses have been standing incomplete for three years?

Reply:

Honourable Member, government is no longer building Reconstruction and Development Programme (RDP) houses. RDP houses were discontinued as soon as Cabinet adopted the Comprehensive Plan for the Development of Sustainable Human Settlements in 2004 setting new standards for housing typologies for government houses referred to as BNG houses.

The Department Human Settlements in Limpopo has advised that the name of the village referred to in the question is Ga-Rantho, but it is commonly referred to as Magolaneng. The Magolaneng village is located in the area of jurisdiction of the Makhuduthamaga Local Municipality in Ward 20. During 2017/18 a contractor was appointed to construct 230 houses of which 5 houses were to be constructed in Magolaneng village.

The contractor’s contract was terminated due to poor workmanship after 176 housing units were completed. Subsequently, two contractors were appointed in March 2020 to complete the units, however, due to the national lockdown work only commenced in August 2020.

The new contractors have started with construction in the nearby village of Mahlolwaneng and it is expected that they will then move to Ga-Rantho (Magolaneng) to finish the incomplete 5 houses.

The project is expected to be completed by the end of the financial year.

16 December 2020 - NW3073

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Mokgotho, Ms SM to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

With regard to the community of Ward 12 in the Moses Kotane Local Municipality, North West, who have been promised houses since 2005, and the fact that the specified municipality brought bricks and crusher to more than 50 houses at Lotwane, Niniva, Selosesha and Stateng sections in order to build Reconstruction and Development Programme houses, yet to date the municipality has not built those houses, what actions has she taken to ensure that the specified communities have houses?

Reply:

The North West Provincial Department of Cooperative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs has indicated that the village is known as Ramokokastad which is located in Ward 12 in the area of jurisdiction of the Moses Kotane Local Municipality. Initially, the Peoples Housing Programme project consisted of 200 housing units of which 145 houses were constructed during 2004. In 2005, the National Home Builders Registration Council (NHBRC) required all home builders to enrol building projects and therefore the project was stopped to enable the developers to meet the requirements. However, the developers failed to register as required by the NHBRC and the project was thus not completed.

In June 2019, the Provincial Department appointed a developer to unblock the project and to construct the remaining 55 houses. To date, 52 houses have been completed and the remaining 3 houses are at completion stage of which the installation of ceilings, painting and the clearing of rubble are in progress.

16 December 2020 - NW2143

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Seitlholo, Mr IS to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

Whether she was informed that her department conducted water tests on samples that were taken from Tlapeng Village in Ward 9 of the Greater Taung Local Municipality, North West, in 2012; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, (a) has she been informed that to date her department has not released the report and (b) what are the results of the tests?

Reply:

Honourable Member, the legislative mandate of the Department of Water and Sanitation is to ensure that the country’s water resources are protected, managed, used, developed, conserved and controlled in a sustainable manner for the benefit of all people and the environment.

The Water Services Act, 1997 refers to municipalities as Water Service Authorities (WSAs) responsible for distribution (reticulation) of water and to supply sanitation services. The Water Services Act in section 3 outlines the right of access to basic water supply and sanitation which mandates that “everyone has a right of access to basic water supply and basic sanitation” and places the responsibility on Water Services Authorities to ensure that they develop a Water Services Development Plan (WSDP) to ensure the realisation of this right.

Section 11 of the Water Services Act, 1997 mandates that “every Water Services Authority has the duty to all consumers or potential consumers in its area of jurisdiction to progressively ensure efficient, affordable, economical and sustainable access to water services.”

The Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati District (DM) is a Water Service Authority (WSA) with a mandate for the provision of water and sanitation services within its jurisdiction in the North West Province. The Municipality is responsible for ensuring good quality of potable water in the area. The Honourable Member is therefore referred to the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA) for the outcome of any tests carried out by the municipality.

16 December 2020 - NW2904

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De Freitas, Mr MS to ask the Minister of Tourism

(1)(a) On what date did she sign her performance contract, (b) how often is her performance assessed and reviewed and (c) what are the details of her performance results to date; (2) what are (a) her main Key Performance Indicators in her performance contract and (b) the (i) measurables and (ii) deadlines in each case?

Reply:

President Cyril Ramaphosa has signed performance agreements with all Ministers to strengthen the capacity of the State and increase accountability.

These agreements, which are based on the targets contained in the Medium-Term Strategic Framework – have been made public so that the people of South Africa can hold those who they elected into office to account.

Copies are available at: https://www.gov.za/about-government/government-system/ministers-performance-agreement.

16 December 2020 - NW2881

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Mohlala, Ms MR to ask the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation

With regard to her new proposal of giving persons land instead of houses, (a) on what date will the specified programme begin and (b) what assurances will she give that the programme will not further entrench apartheid spatial planning, wherein black people were forced to live in areas far away from city centres?

Reply:

(a) The rapid land release programme has commenced through the reprioritisation of the budget allocation for the 2020/21 Human Settlements Development Grant and the Urban Settlements Development Grant.

(b) The land that is released to beneficiaries to build houses for themselves is primarily identified within the declared priority development areas.

The priority development areas are intended to advance Human Settlements Spatial Transformation and Consolidation by ensuring that the delivery of housing is used to foster new integrated, functional and inclusive urban forms that can overcome apartheid spatial patterns.

Typically, these land parcels are well located areas that provide convenient access to social amenities such as schools, health facilities and job opportunities. For example, Elijah Barayi, Westonaria Borwa and Montrose Mega projects located within the Gauteng West Rand have serviced sites earmarked for Rapid Land Release as part of Mega human settlements development and make provision for the required socio-economic amenities.

Therefore, the Rapid Land Release Plan will not compromise the spatial transformation agenda.

16 December 2020 - NW2598

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

Whether she will provide proof and documentation of (a)(i) tender advertisements and/or (ii) requests for quotations and the placement thereof, (b) competitive bids received, (c) requests for quotations received and (d) all contracts of award for the purposes of the construction of Mdantsane temporary residential units for Duncan Village in the Eastern Cape; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details in each case?

Reply:

(a) I have been informed that a request for quotations was placed on the following panels: The Housing Development Agency’s panel of contractors, database for innovative technologies from the National Home Builders Registration Council, the database of Temporary Residential Accommodations (TRA’s) from the National Department of Human Settlements and databases of various Provincial Departments of Human Settlements. The request for proposals is attached as Annexure A.

(b) Not applicable.

(c)&(d) A total of 32 requests for quotations were received from prospective service providers. Further details of the quotations received are available for viewing at the premises of the HDA Head Office: Block A, 6-10 Riviera Road Office Park, Killarney. The records include personal information. This is in accordance with Section 19(1) of the Protection of Personal Information Act, 2013 (Act No. 4 of 2013).

Further, 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 companies. 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)”

 

16 December 2020 - NW2526

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Sithole, Mr KP to ask the Minister of Tourism

Whether there are any plans to invest in tourism subsidies to encourage domestic demand as some of the industry’s biggest market countries have been categorised as high risk and therefore banned from leisure travel into the Republic; if not, what contingency plans are in place, beyond the already distributed relief fund, to support the industry in the event of a second wave of Covid-19 infections; if so, (a) what is the budget allocation for the subsidies and (b) will she furnish Mr K P Sithole with the (i) details of how subsidies will be allocated and (ii) criteria for selecting successful applicants?

Reply:

(a)-(b) (i) and (ii)

There is neither a policy decision nor a plan to subsidise domestic travel, however engagements with the sector aimed to encourage responsible pricing that would stimulate increase in domestic leisure travel. There is also no additional financial relief measure specific to the sector at this stage owing to the constraints in the fiscal environment. However, tourism businesses are encouraged to make use of the R200 billion credit guarantee scheme/facility that was setup between the Reserve Bank, commercial banks and the National Treasury.

16 December 2020 - NW2688

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Singh, Mr N to ask the Minister of Tourism

With reference to her reply to question 2286 on 30 October 2020, what are the reasons that (a) tour guides who are registered with the relevant provincial registrars and (b) freelance tour guides who are not registered with the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) as employees, and therefore qualify for the financial relief amount of R1 500 for three months, are in actual fact not receiving the money because they are still erroneously listed on the UIF, even though they are not eligible for UIF compensation and not paying UIF contributions?

Reply:

The Tourist Guide Relief Fund is meant to benefit tourist guide who are freelancers because they would not be eligible to claim for the TERS. A decision on whether a tourist guide is a freelancer or not, is employed and/or receives UIF payment is based on information contained within a database held by the Unemployment Insurance Fund. Decision on whether a tourist guide qualifies to receive the relief payment or not were taken on the basis of the information received from the UIF as the sole custodian of such information. Tourist guides who may have queries regarding their UIF related information should direct such to the UIF accordingly.

16 December 2020 - NW2215

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De Freitas, Mr MS to ask the Minister of Tourism

(a) What steps has she taken in the past three years to date in the tourism and hospitality sector to make it more representative of (i) gender, (ii) race, (ii) physically challenged and (iv) youth, (b) what are the successes that have been achieved, (c) how are these successes measured, (d) what is the total number of long-term jobs that were created and (e) what jobs were created?

Reply:

a) (i)- (iv) Steps that were taken in the past three years by the Department to make the tourism and hospitality sector more representative.

Whilst the government sets the policy framework through the B-BBEE Act and sector specific Codes as as amended, the private sector has a significant role to play in the changing of the partterns of ownership and mining full participation of designate group in the sector. Departmental efforts alone can never bring the desired change in terms of transformation. All programmes in the department are implemented with a bias towards supporting designated groups i.e. Women, Youth and Persons living with disabilities; and tourism development in rural areas amongst others. Departmental interventions include amongst others, skills development, market access, product development and enhancement, development finance, business development and supporting National Treasury in guiding public sector expenditure on tourism services. It is also worth noting that department‘s own expenditure is driven by the principles and prescripts that guides transformation.

(b) and (c) The Honourable member is referred to the past three years’ Annual Performance Reports as well as the Quarterly Performance Reports that were presented to the Portfolio Committee on Tourism for the detail and final numbers of all beneficiaries that completed the programmes of the department.

The Honourable Member is further referred to the detailed presentation made by the Tourism B-BBEE Charter Council to the Portfolio Committee on Tourism on 29 October 2019 on the State of Transformation in Tourism. The Department implements all its programmes in line with the Tourism B-BBEE Codes and provides support to the work done by the Charter Council.

(d) Not applicable, the question is about transformation of the sector.

(e) Not applicable.

15 December 2020 - NW2950

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Hill-Lewis, Mr GG to ask the Minister of Finance

With reference to the 2019-20 annual report of the Financial and Fiscal Commission, (a) what are the reasons that some tenders awarded to bidders were based on preference points that were not calculated in accordance with the requirements of the Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act, Act 5 of 2000, and its regulations?

Reply:

The audit finding in question involved an instance of appointment of a recruitment agency which was not the cheapest based on the Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act,2000 (Act 5 of 2000) (PPPFA). It was an oversight on the side of management for failing to document reasons and acquire approval to not appoint the cheapest bidder, as required by section 2(1)(f) of the PPPFA. Measures have now been put in place to prevent any other recurrence of this error. This was also related to the staffing capacity challenges then in the procurement domain, which are now addressed.

15 December 2020 - NW2853

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Cebekhulu, Inkosi RN to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

Following reports that the South African sugar cane growers have recently complained about the major increase in cheap sugar imports from countries such as Brazil, the United Arab Emirates and other countries, which has had an unavoidable impact on the competitiveness of the South African sugar industry, with massive reduction in sales of local sugar over the past year, what are the full details of the steps his department has taken to ensure that Government creates a thriving, inclusive, transformed and sustainable local sugar industry that supports our sugar cane growers? [

Reply:

The South African sugar industry is an important part of South Africa’s agricultural sector, employing some 85 000 people directly. South Africa experienced an increase in imported sugar up until 2017. To provide protection to South African sugar producers, and following consultation with the industry facilitated by the Ministry, in August 2018 the International Trade Administration Commission (ITAC) amended the dollar-based reference price used to determine the effective customs duty on sugar, which resulted in an increase in the customs duty on imported sugar.

Subsequently, sugar imports declined from 844 522 tons in 2017, to 544 708 tons in 2018, and to 519 189 tons in 2019. This has been largely attributed to the change in the tariffs.

Imports from Brazil have declined from a record 243 982 tons in 2017 to 21 971 tons in 2019; while imports from the United Arab Emirates have declined from 157 387 tons in 2017 to t 26 tons in 2019.

This decline in sugar imports has continued during 2020, with imported sugar for the period from January to October 2020 amounting to 408 364 tons, some 8% below imports during the same period in 2019. However, I have been advised that there has been an increase in imports from Brazil during this period, from 19 488 tons in the period from January to October 2019, to 31 563 tons in the same period in 2020; though still below levels of imports experienced in 2017 and 2018. Imports from the UAE as reflected in official statistics for 2020 (to date), remain at modest levels compared to 2017.

To help provide further support to the sugar value chain in South Africa, government began consultation in August 2019 with the sugar industry - including producers, industrial and retail users, and organised labour – on the development of a masterplan for the sector. The broad terms of the Masterplan, which includes a commitment to local procurement of at least 80% of need for industrial users and retailers were agreed in April 2020, and signed by stakeholders during a virtual signing ceremony in November 2020, ahead of the 3rd South Africa Investment Conference.

A media statement was issued jointly by the dtic and the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development (DALRRD) on 17 November 2020, providing the details of the masterplan, a copy of which can be found on the dtic website at http://www.thedtic.gov.za/government-and-industry-stakeholder-signed-the-sugar-master-plan/.

-END-

15 December 2020 - NW2949

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Hill-Lewis, Mr GG to ask the Minister of Finance

With reference to the 2019-20 Annual Report of the Financial and Fiscal Commission, what are the reasons that the financial statements that were submitted for auditing were not prepared in accordance with the (a) prescribed financial reporting framework as required by section 40(1)(a) and (b) Public Finance Management Act, Act 1 of 1999?

Reply:

The error contained in the financial statements related to misclassification and reconciliation mistakes in respect of certain assets, liabilities and expenditure. No such error had occurred in the prior year and corrections were effected before final submission of the Annual Financial Statements. There were several challenges that led to the audit query raised, which were predominantly in relation to staffing in the finance section. Some of the reasons noted by the Audit and Risk Committee and the Commission are:

The institution is small with only a few people in the Finance Section. There were three CFOs heading up the finance section in respect of the execution and audit preparation phases for the 2019/20 statutory audit. Although contracted by the Commission to cover the financial year and preparation of audit (prior to the Covid-19 situation, for the period estimated to conclude end August 2020), permanent employment opportunities led to CFO resignation and absence of continuity. Given a short period for handover during Covid-19 lockdown, this affected the preparation of audit process. In addition, key staff members left during the financial year e.g. Procurement Officer in November 2020, Financial Controller in October 2020 and the Management Accountant went on maternity leave in December 2019. This all resulted in new recruitment and/or temporary staff which had to be sought. This absence in continuity of the majority of staff members affected the preparation for the audit process.

To prevent the above finding from recurring, the institution is in the process of filling the position of the Chief Financial Officer on a permanent basis and this is key in implementing the plan developed and being executed, to get the institution ready for the audit process. The plan developed is designed to ensure that the misstatements raised by the Auditor General on the annual financial statements are not repeated.

15 December 2020 - NW3053

Profile picture: Cebekhulu, Inkosi RN

Cebekhulu, Inkosi RN to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

What (a) steps is his department taking to resolve outstanding grievances of musicians on the payment of royalties, (b) initiatives are being undertaken by his department to ensure a more efficient and transparent process in distributing royalties and (c) reforms have been made to modernise organisations responsible for the collection of royalties?

Reply:

I am advised by the Commissioner of the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) of the following:

a) The CIPC held a meeting with the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), which is a big user of sound recordings for needle-time rights to establish a working relationship between the two entities. In terms of the envisaged working relationship, the SABC will share with CIPC the data/information on the use of sound recordings. The data/ information from SABC, will be used to verify distributions made by Collecting Societies (SAMPRA and IMPRA) in this regard. Data/information on usage in simple terms determines how much performing artists and owners of sound recordings must get as their royalty for the use of their music repertoire.

b) The data / information from SABC, which shows how many sound recordings were used or played, will be made available to CIPC and Collecting Societies. This will create transparency and efficiency in the distribution process of royalties. Of the two Collecting Societies that CIPC is regulating, an audit has been performed on SAMPRA processes and systems to ensure transparency and a further audit to all distributions will be performed. A tracking register has been developed with SAMPRA to track the improvement on its systems and processes.

CIPC has also embarked on robust education and awareness sessions to the performing artists and owners of sound recordings. The sessions explain their rights as members of the Collecting Societies so that they can enforce accountability and transparency in the manner in which such Collecting Societies run their business. This is also to ensure good governance.

c) CIPC has requested the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in writing to send a mission to South Africa for technical assistance to Collecting Societies and big users such as SABC on how best to generate data / information on use of sound recordings using new technological system. This will, in our view create a more transparent system and accountability.

-END-

15 December 2020 - NW3097

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Krüger, Mr HC to ask the Minister of Small Business Development

With reference to the (a) letter, dated 31 July 2020, and (b) list of unpaid invoices sent to her by Mr H C C Krüger, what are the reasons that she has not yet responded to the specified letter?

Reply:

It is not normal practice for the Minister to ignore correspondence from stakeholders of the Department; and in particular from members of the Portfolio Committee on Small Business Development. The Honourable Member can be assured that the matters raised in the letter are a subject that the Minister prioritises and feels strongly about. The Honourable Member can be further assured that the Minister has raised these concerns with the Minister of Finance. However, as previously indicated in a reply to a written parliamentary question on this matter, the Office of the Chief Procurement Officer, which is situated within National Treasury, is entrusted with this responsibility and therefore the letter is requested to be re-directed to the Ministry of Finance.

Further to this, the letter was sent directly to the Minister’s inbox at a time when the Minister was in the midst of working on the department’s response to the impact of COVID-19 on small, medium and micro enterprises and co-operatives in South Africa. This, together with her numerous other commitments, does mean at times the Minister may not be able to immediately respond to the huge amount of correspondence sent directly to the Minister’s inbox, without copying the supporting officials. For this exact reason, there are a number of officials that are assigned to assist the Minister to timeously attend to correspondence and the office of the Honourable Member is requested to copy the officials in correspondence with the Minister as they were not copied the letter that was sent to the Minister in July 2020. The officials are:

15 December 2020 - NW3004

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Hill-Lewis, Mr GG to ask the Minister of Finance

With reference to the 2019-20 Annual Report of the Financial and Fiscal Commission, what are the reasons that the (a) Business Continuity Plan, (b) Disaster Recovery Plan, (c) Document Feasibility Study and (d) Compliance Charter projects were not completed?

Reply:

a) The Business Continuity Plan was undertaken in the 2020/21 APP and has already been developed. It could not be completed during the financial year 2019/20 due to the responsible employee having resigned from the FFC.

b) In terms of the Disaster Recovery Plan, the process of developing it is underway and also linked to the ICT rejuvenation implementation that is underway. It should be completed before the end of 2020/21 financial year. It could not be completed during the financial year 2019/20 due to the responsible employee having resigned from the FFC.

c) The Document Feasibility Study was not done in the 2019/20 financial year because the secondment of an expert, who was supposed to assist with the feasibility study could not be made be available by their institution. The FFC subsequently engaged SALGA to conduct a feasibility study and a report has now been provided.

d) The Compliance Charter was not completed in 2019/20 financial year, this due to the fact that the FFC has to benchmark it against institutions of a like nature and other constitutional institutions.

15 December 2020 - NW3009

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George, Dr DT to ask the Minister of Finance

With reference to the 2019-20 Annual Report of the Financial Intelligence Centre what are the reasons that the SA Mint, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the SA Reserve Bank, failed to (a) update information related to registration and (b) report cash thresholds for which they received a sanction of R1,3 million?

Reply:

On 25 March 2019, the Financial Intelligence Centre (“the FIC”) conducted an inspection on SA Mint, with the following compliance deficiencies identified:

a) Failure to update information related to the SA Mint’s registration:

1. The SA Mint was registered with the FIC as a reporting institution with effect from 27 November 2013.

2. With the introduction of FIC’s goAML registration system in 2016, the notification to register on the new system was sent to an employee that had left the SA Mint, resulting in SA Mint not being aware of the notification and thus not updating its information on the new online registration system.

3. In August 2019 and subsequent to the inspection, SA Mint updated its registration information with the FIC.

(b) Failure to report cash threshold transactions:

1. In terms of the inspection conducted, the FIC found that SA Mint did not report cash transactions at its retail store, Coin World, as well as direct cash deposits made into its bank account.

2. Furthermore, the FIC found that the internal classification of funds received, did not differentiate between cash or electronic payments.

3. In addition, there were two instances of cash received at the retail outlet, which were reported late and not in accordance with the FIC Act time frames.

4. SA Mint confirms that where the information was available, the relevant cash threshold transactions have been reported to the FIC subsequent to the inspection.

5. Further, SA Mint confirms that it continues to timeously report all relevant cash threshold transactions in accordance with section 28 of the FIC Act.

6. Currently, the SA Mint is in full compliance with the FIC Act and the relevant training, processes, procedures and monitoring systems are in place to ensure full compliance with its FIC Act obligations.

 

15 December 2020 - NW2892

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Chirwa, Ms NN to ask the Minister of Health

With reference to his reply to question 1836 on 18 September 2020, (a) has the specified information been obtained to fulfill the recommendation of the Commission for Gender Equality (CGE) nine months after the release of the CGE report which gave his department four months to implement all the recommendations, including that it should meet with the victims it has tortured over the years and agree on compensation for the cruelty and abuse by the State who forcefully sterilised HIV positive black women and (b) by what date will his department meet the victims as this has not happened?

Reply:

On review of the report of the Commission, I sought to get more details of each complainant by appointing the independent Obstetrician to review and analyse all the case records of the complainants and get advice on each individual case so that by the time they are met, there is enough clinical information from the records.

I presented a report on this matter to the Joint meeting of the Portfolio Committees on Health and of Women, Youth and Persons with Disabilities, on 25 November 2020.

END.

15 December 2020 - NW2936

Mkhonto, Ms C N to ask the Minister of Employment and Labour

What total (a) amount has (i) his department and (ii) all entities reporting to him spent on consultants between 1 March and 31 October 2020 and (b) number of consultants were appointed by the Commissioner to work directly in his office?

Reply:

a) During the specified period there is no expenditure amount in the Office of the Director General paid to consultants. (i) The Office of the Director General appointed no consultants in the specified period. Therefore, there are no amounts of funds that were spent.

(ii) Amount accounting for Nedlac is R2 295 578.18

b) Two consultants were appointed to work in the Office of the Executive Director. One was appointed to prepare the Annual Report and the second was appointed to upgrade the website and develop a template for a Nedlac newsletter to stakeholders.

(ii) In relation to UIF, the amount is R36,179,557.35

See the breakdown below:

Unemployment Insurance Fund

     

Company Name

Services

Expenditure

VS

Operational System

18,142,479.45

Gen2

Financial System

5,788,146.41

Altimax

Technical financial advisory services on the Fund’s annual financial statements and audit

1,510,698.00

True South

Actuarial Services

6,068,203.52

Nexia SAB&T

Probity Review Services on procurement processes

1,854,095.52

IAC

Actuarial Services Contract (contract came to an end during the period)

619,181.01

SNG

Internal Audit Consultants

2,196,753.44

Total:

 

36,179,557.35

(b) no consultants were appointed by Commissioner to work directly in his office during the specified period.

15 December 2020 - NW2933

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Shivambu, Mr F to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

(1)(a) What total number of ventilators for COVID-19 patients has the Republic produced in the year 2020, (b) who manufactured the ventilators, (c) on what date were the ventilators manufactured and (d) what was the total cost of each ventilator; (2) whether the ventilators were tested; if not, why not; if so, (a) on what date and (b) where were they tested?NW3758E

Reply:

A total of 20 000 CPAP ventilators have now been produced in South Africa, during the national state of disaster under the NVP. These ventilators have been produced by two local entities, namely the state-owned Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and the South African Ventilator Emergency Project (SAVE-P) – a consortium of companies.

Production began in July 2020 and the final units were completed during November 2020. The 20 000 units produced include the following:

  • 18,000 Venturi-type CPAP devices manufactured through a contract with the CSIR, which is a state-owned science Council; and
  • 2,000 blender-type CPAP devices manufactured by SAVE-P.

The CSIR ventilator systems were assembled and packaged by Akacia Medical in the Western Cape. Individual components for the CPAP-ventilator were manufactured by a consortium of industry partners in Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal and Eastern Cape, including the Central University of Technology and firms such as Black Capital Systems, Andani Futuretech Manufacturing, UV Tooling, Sola Medical, Gabler Medical and Pitchline Engineering. All manufacturing was done for the CSIR.

The SAVE-P consortium incorporates manufacturers located in Cape Town, Pinetown, Durban, Midrand, and Alberton, consisting of MCR Manufacturing, Reef Engineering, Bosch, Executive Engineering, Rhomberg Instruments, Dowclay Products, ISO Health SA, Pegasus Steel, NAACAM, AFRIT, Corruseal, New Age Medical Supplies, Aveti and Non-Ferrous Metal Works.

The development, production and procurement cost for the 20 000 units were funded through a R250 million donation from the Solidarity Fund, at an average cost of R12 500 per unit.

The South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (SARAO) was appointed to manage the national effort to design, develop and produce the respiratory ventilators to support the government’s response to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Engineers at SARAO have experience and a track record in developing and execution of complex systems within short timeframes. They developed the MeerKAT radio telescope system in the Karoo, the precurser to the SKA.

SARAO performed an initial qualification review of both the CSIR and SAVE-P devices, to first determine whether they met the specifications of the NVP. Following this review, CSIR and SAVE-P was required to develop a industrialisation plan – to determine whether they had the manufacturing capacity to produce the units, including sourcing of components. – culminating in a Production Readiness Review conducted by SARAO. Following the Production Readiness Review, a technical dossier with a prototype of the device was provided to SAPHRA in order for the SAPHRA to perform the required inspections for licensing. Both devices were approved by SAHPRA on 26 June 2020. Clinical trials were conducted of both devices at Charlotte Maxeke Johannesburg Academic Hospital on behalf of the SARAO; with a further clinical trial conducted at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital under the supervision of the National Department of Health. Quality Control for each unit produced is performed by the final assemblers, under the supervision of the SARAO, who have conducted unit inspections to ensure that units produced meet approved specification.

-END-

15 December 2020 - NW2971

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Lorimer, Mr JR to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

(1)With regard to the Musina-Makhado Special Economic Zone, what (a)(i) are the reasons that the specified project was designated a Presidential Project and (ii) date was it done so, (b) does such designation mean, (c)(i) state-owned entities and (ii) government departments are either participating and/or intended to participate in this project, (d) total amount has each of the specified entities spent on the project so far, (e) total amount do they intend to spend in the next 10 years and (f) value will be delivered to the South African persons in return; (2) whether any kind of environmental exemptions will be provided by the Government during the course of the project; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what is the source of the non-South African governmental investor’s finance? [NW3797E]

Reply:

1. The Musina-Makhado Special Economic Zone (SEZ) was designated by Cabinet in accordance with the Special Economic Zone Act No 16 of 2014. The Act prescribes a process in which all special economic zones are designated.

I am advised that the project was not designated as a Presidential project.

The Department reports that implementation of Musina-Makhado is coordinated through a Steering Committee that consists of various departments and State owned entities such as the Department of Water Affairs and Sanitation and Eskom. The purpose of the steering committee is to support the SEZ company with the mobilisation and management of stakeholders, particularly with regards to sector departments and state owned entities. At this stage, departments have not committed specific funding towards the development of the project. The province is still finalising the Master plans and environmental authorisation processes.

2. The Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) application for Musina Makhado Special Economic Zone has been launched in terms of the National Environmental Management Act and the associated regulations. The process is still underway.

The Limpopo government has advised the Department that it has an investor pipeline of $15.2 billion with potential investors in various projects ranging from power generation to minerals beneficiation. According to the Province, the investors will be bringing their own funds to finance their investment projects.

-END-

15 December 2020 - NW3008

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George, Dr DT to ask the Minister of Finance

(1)With reference to the 2019-20 Annual Report of the Financial Intelligence Centre, what are the reasons that no inspections were conducted by the (a) Independent Regulatory Board of Auditors, (b) Limpopo Gambling Board, (c) Free State Gambling and Liquor Authority, (d) KwaZulu-Natal Gambling and Betting Board, (e) Western Cape Gambling and Betting Board, and (f) North West Gambling Board; (2) what are the reasons that the Northern Cape Gambling and Racing Board failed to submit its investigation figures?

Reply:

(1) What are the reasons that no inspections were conducted by the:

(a) Independent Regulatory Board of Auditors (IRBA):

Reply from IRBA:

The institutions that fall under the Financial Intelligence Centre Act 38 of 2001 (the FIC Act) supervisory responsibilities of IRBA are similarly supervised by the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA) for FIC Act compliance under Item 12 of Schedule 1 of the FIC Act.

It is due to this overlap that in 2012, IRBA and FSCA concluded a Memorandum of Understanding wherein FSCA agreed to supervise those institutions that fall under IRBA’s supervisory responsibility for purposes of FIC Act compliance.

As such, IRBA has not conducted any FIC Act compliance inspections during the 2019/20 financial year as these institutions are supervised for FIC Act compliance by FSCA on the IRBA’s behalf.

Due to this overlap and at the request of IRBA, the FIC has proposed to the Minister of Finance an amended Schedule 2 of the FIC Act that will exclude IRBA as a supervisory body.

The proposed amended Schedules to the FIC Act are currently before the Minister of Finance for consideration and further consultation.

(b) Limpopo Gambling Board:

No reply received from Limpopo Gambling Board.

Reply from the FIC:

In 2018, the Limpopo Gambling Board was informed by the FIC that then Minister of Finance had approved the process to consult on the exit of the provincial gambling boards as supervisory bodies and transfer their FIC Act supervisory responsibilities to the FIC.

Based upon previous discussions, the FIC believes that in anticipation thereof, the Limpopo Gambling Board did not plan or execute any FIC Act inspections during the 2019/20 FY.

(c) Free State Gambling and Liquor Authority:

Reply from Free State Gambling and Liquor Authority:

The Free State Gambling and Liquor Authority was unable to conduct FIC Act inspections during the 2019-20 financial year due a lack of resources, with only one (1) inspector responsible for conducting FIC Act inspections for the entire province.

(d) KwaZulu-Natal Gambling and Betting Board:

No reply received from KwaZulu-Natal Gambling and Betting Board.

Reply from the FIC:

In 2018, the KwaZulu-Natal Gambling and Betting Board was informed by the FIC that then Minister of Finance had approved the process to consult on the exit of the provincial gambling boards as supervisory bodies and transfer their FIC Act supervisory responsibilities to the FIC.

Based upon previous discussions, the FIC believes that in anticipation thereof, the KwaZulu-Natal Gambling and Betting Board did not plan or execute any FIC Act inspections during the 2019/20 FY.

(e) Western Cape Gambling and Betting Board:

No reply received from Western Cape Gambling and Betting Board.

Reply from the FIC:

In 2018, the Western Cape Gambling and Betting Board was informed by the FIC that then Minister of Finance had approved the process to consult on the exit of the provincial gambling boards as supervisory bodies and transfer their FIC Act supervisory responsibilities to the FIC.

Based upon previous discussions, the FIC believes that in anticipation thereof, the Western Cape Gambling and Betting Board did not plan or execute any FIC Act inspections during the 2019/20 FY.

(f) North West Gambling Board:

Reply from North West Gambling Board:

During 2019/20 financial, the North West Gambling Board conducted 650 inspections in terms of the North West Gambling Act 2 of 2001, which included checks and verification for FIC Act compliance.

Reply from the FIC:

For an inspection to qualify as a FIC Act inspection, it must be instituted in terms of section 45(B) of the FIC Act.

Since the 650 inspections conducted by the North West Gambling Board were instituted in terms of the provisions of the North West Gambling Act 2 of 2001 and not the FIC Act, these do not legally qualify as FIC Act inspections.

As such, the FIC’s annual report for 2019/20 reflected a nil figure for FIC Act inspections conducted by the North West Gambling Board.

(2) What are the reasons that the Northern Cape Gambling and Racing Board failed to submit its investigation (inspection) figures?

Reply from Northern Cape Gambling and Racing Board:

On 14 July 2020, the FIC was verbally informed that no FIC Act inspections were conducted for the 2019/20 financial year.

Reply from the FIC:

The FIC confirms that the Northern Cape Gambling and Racing Board had on 14 July 2020 verbally confirmed that it had not conducted any FIC Act inspections for the 2019/20 financial year.

The FIC had however requested that such be formally confirmed in writing on the institutions letter- head but no such written confirmation was received.

As such, the FIC reflected in its annual report that the Northern Cape Gambling and Racing Board had failed to submit its inspection figures.

The Northern Cape Gambling Board has not provided an explanation as to why their inspection figures were not formally confirmed in writing.

15 December 2020 - NW3003

Profile picture: Hill-Lewis, Mr GG

Hill-Lewis, Mr GG to ask the Minister of Finance

(1)With reference to the 2019-20 Annual Report of the Financial and Fiscal Commission, what are the reasons that payments were not made within 30 days or an agreed period after receipt of an invoice, as required by the National Treasury regulation 8.2.3; (2) what are the reasons that effective and appropriate steps were not taken to prevent irregular expenditure amounting to R46 761, as disclosed in note 20 of the financial statements, as required by section 38(1)(c)(ii) of the Public Finance Management Act, Act 1 of 1999 and the National Treasury Regulation 9.1.1?

Reply:

a) The late payment of invoices during 2019/20 financial year is due to various reasons, which include circumstances where the FFC had to perform reconciliation on disputes raised with the suppliers. Controls have been strengthened wherein on a weekly basis, as opposed to monthly, the supplier age analysis is generated to enable the weekly payment of suppliers, which allows ample opportunities to resolve issues. Where the internal controls are not adhered to, resulting in late payment and interest charged by a service provider, steps have been taken against staff as part of consequence management to achieve compliance and to manage such performance of staff.

b) The expenditure in question is relates to the remuneration of the FFC Chairperson which dates back to the time of appointment of the late Chairperson, wherein there was a difference between the remuneration and the salary determination by the Independent Commission for Remuneration of Public Office Bearers, as ascented to by the President. In respect of this amount, the contributing factor is the delay in the proclamation of salaries of office-bearers for 2019/20, which potentially might have rendered this amount not to be unauthorised. In July 2020, the FFC sought condonation of this expenditure from National Treasury and to date has not receive an outcome, although making follow-ups. A further request for condonation in this regard, for the period 1 April 2020 to 10 October 2020 and amounting to R23,000, was made in November 2020 and we equally await feedback. Should the condonation be approved, as was the case for such amounts in the prior financial years, this irregular expenditure would be resolved and this would be removed from the disclosure note and reflected in the annual financial statements for the 2020/21 financial year.

15 December 2020 - NW2951

Profile picture: Hill-Lewis, Mr GG

Hill-Lewis, Mr GG to ask the Minister of Finance

With reference to the 2019-20 Annual Report of the Financial and Fiscal Commission, what are the reasons that sufficient appropriate audit evidence was not obtained that goods and services with a transaction value below R500 000 were procured by means of obtaining the required price quotations as required by the National Treasury Regulation 16A6.1?

Reply:

All evidence pertaining to the above audit query was obtained, however at the time it was finally collated, the Auditor General indicated that they were no longer accepting documents for audit purposes as they were then at their reporting phase. In addition to the staff turnover, which in the institution’s small-sized finance division presented challenges of continuity - during May 2019, the erstwhile CFO issued a directive in the finance section to de-activate the automated requisitioning functionality on Pastel. This decision led to challenges being experienced with regard to the storage of documents on the system and affected the audit trail with regard to the linking of requisitions, quotations, approved memos and other supporting documentation to a transaction. The requisitioning functionality has been re-instated on Pastel, which will ensure that all and sufficient evidence documents e.g. requisitions, quotations & other supporting documentation are stored and retrievable for audit purposes.

15 December 2020 - NW2896

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Tito, Ms LF to ask the Minister of Health

(1)Whether he has been informed that transgender women in Kimberly in the Northern Cape are given a hormonal therapy drug called Premarin; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, (2) whether the specified drug has been sanctioned by his department; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what quality-control mechanisms have been undertaken to ensure that it is safe for human consumption?

Reply:

1. Hormonal medicines used in transgender patients include testosterone for masculinising, and oestrogen for feminising. Access to these agents for use in transgender patients is currently off-label (i.e. not registered for this indication) and is only available at a tertiary level of care requiring specialist approval. The overall management of transgender patients requires specialised clinical skills and access to complex psychosocial assessment and interventions. The Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital in Kimberley is a Tertiary Hospital in the Northern Cape and is currently in the process of putting systems in place to offer this service. Currently, patients are managed with the support of the clinical expertise from the Universitas Hospital in the Free State.

2. Yes, the medicine has been approved by the National Essential Medicines List Committee for inclusion on the Essential Medicines List at the tertiary level of care. Inclusion of any medicine on the Essential Medicine List is based on evidence of efficacy, quality, safety. Registration by the national regulatory authority, the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority, is therefore required for human consumption.

END.

15 December 2020 - NW2940

Profile picture: Wilson, Ms ER

Wilson, Ms ER to ask the Minister of Health

Whether, given that the 2019-20 Annual Report of her department stated that R18 million worth of registered irregular expenditure was for the National Health Insurance Supplier (Digital Vibes) for the COVID-19 response and in light of the fact that the COVID-19 lockdown only started at the end of March 2020, he will provide the full, relevant details as to the (a) date on which Digital Vibes was contracted to deal with the COVID-19 response, (b)(i) time period and (ii) total cost of the contract with Digital Vibes, (c) question if a service level agreement was entered into with Digital Vibes, (d) kind of services that Digital Vibes was appointed to provide and (e) question if a tender process was followed prior to the appointment of Digital Vibes; if not, why not; if so what are the relevant details in each case?

Reply:

a) Digital Vibes was appointed on the 15th of November 2019 through a deviation process to provide communication services in relation to the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill as released by the Cabinet for Parliament consideration. A closed tender process for the appointment was followed and supported by National Treasury. On the 25th of March 2020, the Department extended the scope of work of Digital Vibes to include Covid-19. This deviation was supported by National Treasury on a letter dated 24 June 2020 in terms of emergency procurement. It must however be recalled that the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) confirmed the first positive case of Covid-19 in the country on the 5th of March 2020 from patients who had entered the country on the 1st of March 2020. Therefore, even though the President had made a formal announcement of lockdown on the 23rd of March 2020, the Department of Health had already started with the groundwork of curbing the spread of the virus, which included information dissemination, education, public awareness and media communication on Covid-19 long before the lockdown started. The irregular expenditure identified by AGSA is still to be investigated as per irregular expenditure framework. The Department maintains that the transaction in question was not irregular as there was a contract already in place.

b) (i) Digital Vibes contract was supposed to come to an end on the 30th of November 2020, however due to logistical arrangements, National Treasury was requested to extend the contract on a month-to-month basis for a period not exceeding four (4) months while procurement process to appoint a new service provider who will provide the same service for all health programmes like HIV, TB etc is in progress. The requested and approved extension will end on 31 March 2021.

(ii) The appointment is based on activity-based costing (ABC), which means as and when services are required. The current expenditure to date is R82 471 856.80 (VAT Incl).

c) Yes, the Department of Health entered into a Service Level Agreement with Digital Vibes.

d) Digital Vibes was appointed through a deviation process to provide communication services in relation to the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill as released by the Cabinet for Parliament consideration. The scope of the contract was expanded to include information dissemination, education, public awareness and media communication on Covid-19.

e) A deviation from normal procurement processes was followed in the appointment of Digital Vibes. This was following a Cabinet meeting of the 3rd of July 2019 which made a recommendation that there must be a clear media strategy at the time that the NHI Bill is released by Cabinet to Parliament as the Bill will be in the public domain. The National Department of Health was required to prepare this plan within a very short time frame and a skilled professional in this area of work was required immediately. This led to the Department requesting National Treasury for a deviation from normal procurement processes. National Treasury recommended that the Department must advertised a tender for a shortened period of 14 days. Pursuant to this response from National Treasury a meeting was held between representatives from NDoH and National Treasury and during this meeting it was resolved that NDoH must identify at least 10 service providers, operating within the public relations and professional communication services who are registered on Central Supplier Database (CSD) and issue them with the terms of reference in order for them to present proposals to the Department for further consideration. The recommendation from National Treasury was followed and at the closing date only two (2) out of ten (10) service providers responded to the invitation. Digital Vibes was then recommended and awarded based on meeting all the requirements of the bid.

END.

15 December 2020 - NW2895

Profile picture: Thembekwayo, Dr S

Thembekwayo, Dr S to ask the Minister of Health

(1)What has he found to be the state of psychiatric care in the Republic since the beginning of COVID-19; (2) whether his department has reprioritised resources away from psychiatric care to COVID-19 related functions; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what impact has the reprioritisation of resources had on psychiatric patients?

Reply:

(1) The Department of Health has not conducted a review on the state of psychiatric care since the beginning of COVID-19. The last formal review of the state of psychiatric care in the Republic was conducted by the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) and a report was released in March 2019. The report is publicly available. The report remains instructive and the main source of information on the state of psychiatric care.

The disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic have derailed the implementation of the recommendations by the SAHRC, which we have committed to implement to ensure that the status core changes for the better.

The Department utilises information collected through the District Health Information System to track utilization of mental health services at primary health care, admissions to inpatient mental health units in general hospitals, and bed utilization rates in specialized psychiatric hospitals. The tables below provide information on these selected indicators showing the status in psychiatric care pre COVID-19 and during COVID-19:

Table 1: DHIS data on the number of clients of all ages seen at ambulatory (non-inpatient) services for mental health conditions

 

EC

Free State

Gauteng

KZN

Limpopo

MPU

NC

 

2019

2020

2019

2020

2019

2020

2019

2020

2019

2020

2019

2020

2019

2020

March

29840

29855

14651

14259

41382

42768

39671

40389

33666

32210

11753

13463

5071

4645

April

31015

23721

14047

10312

44560

36605

41869

36894

32321

21158

12146

9022

5047

4168

May

31638

22990

15076

9055

45034

35622

44029

35475

34513

18936

14934

10726

4958

4385

June

28330

21425

13371

8135

40419

37720

41605

37824

32319

21165

12895

10548

4303

4347

July

31233

24569

15130

7775

50316

40393

45163

37608

33467

19947

6476

8175

5797

4638

Aug

30232

23244

15470

8354

45517

40886

42665

35994

34332

18466

16377

7766

5138

5118

Sept

29747

25839

14329

7927

42594

42635

40442

38246

35029

20838

17022

8453

4738

5021

 

NW

WC

 

2019

2020

2019

2020

March

9391

8682

18591

20750

April

9600

10038

20447

14434

May

9735

8805

20710

12763

June

8473

7118

18592

14465

July

10118

8408

22773

15374

Aug

9714

7331

21109

15094

Sept

9756

7540

20920

16734

Table 2: Number of clients of all ages admitted for mental health problems in mental health units attached to general hospitals

 

EC

Free State

Gauteng

KZN

Limpopo

MPU

NC

 

2019

2020

2019

2020

2019

2020

2019

2020

2019

2020

2019

2020

2019

2020

March

963

787

2488

2340

680

818

1049

1492

626

685

290

298

59

45

April

883

733

2232

2028

800

548

1612

2160

716

498

264

210

107

67

May

1019

531

4993

3236

912

628

1426

1563

652

608

244

243

120

135

June

909

561

4407

4289

643

587

1510

1381

614

570

201

196

100

51

July

910

758

3350

3923

801

630

1751

1139

767

597

255

190

128

29

Aug

905

553

2538

4019

736

764

1618

1136

814

644

197

204

60

49

Sept

883

1400

2291

4494

688

905

1440

1361

712

858

230

204

66

47

 

NW

WC

 

2019

2020

2019

2020

March

194

205

1663

2057

April

205

164

1660

1307

May

182

175

1706

1221

June

306

188

1585

1406

July

360

226

1811

1501

Aug

364

194

1850

1468

Sept

235

218

1796

1772

Table 3: National average data for the Specialised Psychiatric Hospitals Bed utilization rate (beds occupied compared to the total number of beds) (%)

 

2019

2020

March

75.5

147.3

April

147.4

64.7

May

154.4

70.2

June

149.1

68.1

July

152.8

70.3

Aug

153.8

67.7

Sept

81.1

69

Table 4: National average data for the Specialised Psychiatric Hospitals discharges (n)

 

 

2019

2020

March

1131

1297

April

1218

1288

May

1223

751

June

1254

805

July

1255

824

Aug

1188

608

Sept

1076

800

(2) Through the equitable share, each of the nine provinces receives an allocation for the provision of health care services directly from National Treasury through the provincial treasuries. Provincial Departments of Health determine the allocation of resources to health programmes including psychiatric care. In this regard, information regarding reprioritisation of resources due to Covid-19 is currently being sourced from each of the nine Provincial Departments of Health to be able to respond to this question. The response to the Parliamentary Question will be provided in due course.

END.

15 December 2020 - NW2870

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Hlengwa, Ms MD to ask the Minister of Health

Whether, in view of recent media reports that have indicated that the KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health has issued notices to doctors operating in the uMgungundlovu District that their contracts would be terminated this year due to lack of funds and that many of the specified doctors are over the age of 60 years and were hired to work within the specified district until the end of 2022 as part of a project by his department to meet the objectives of the National Health Insurance, he has been informed of doctors over the age of 60 years whose contracts have been terminated in the uMgungundlovu district; if not, what is his position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

The KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health informed me that they have sufficient funds from the National Health Insurance (NHI) Direct Grant for contracting of General Practitioners in line with their 2020/21 business plan.

The uMgungundlovu Health District has a one hundred percent (100%) Doctor coverage in its Primary Health Care (PHC) facilities.

The Department of Health issued notices only to five (5) Doctors who are over the age of seventy (70) years and eighty (80) years for their end of contract in order to achieve the following:-

1. Comply with the Public Service Act (PSA) section 16.

2. Re-distribution of Doctors to the neediest clinics in other Districts (as there were clinics under UMgungundlovu that had contracted between two (2) and three (3) Doctors per clinic, whereas there were shortages in other Districts).

3. Compliance with the National Development Plan (NDP) 2030 health sector strategy “more health professionals should be on hand, especially in poor communities.

END.

15 December 2020 - NW2888

Profile picture: Mthenjane, Mr DF

Mthenjane, Mr DF to ask the Minister of Health

What (a) measures has he put in place to ensure that hospitals in the Eastern Cape are fully equipped for the continuing rise in the number of COVID-19 infections and (b) lessons has he learnt (i) from the first wave of the spread of the virus and (ii) regarding the importance of personal protective equipment for frontline workers?

Reply:

a) All District Offices and hospitals in the Eastern Cape have been provided with the Action Plan to prepare the hospitals for an envisaged resurgence. This includes practical measures that hospitals must implement to enhance the readiness for the rising numbers of COVID-19 in the Province. The essential respiratory support devices and donated oxygen equipment have been distributed to central, regional and district facilities with an emphasis to have adequately trained staff and infrastructure at all these facilities. The Department initiated an audit of oxygen reticulation infrastructure which was completed at 64 priority hospitals in the Province. This audit was aimed at the improvement of oxygen delivery capabilities at these facilities. The Provincial Department is implementing suggested rectification actions within the current national financial constraints, to improve the availability of bulk liquid oxygen. At five hospitals the current cylinder oxygen banks are to be replaced with bulk oxygen tanks to provide additional constant supply to the hospitals. Cement Plinths to accommodate these tanks are constructed at the hospitals and tanks are moved to the new positions and coupled to the reticulation. Oxygen cylinder resupply is closely monitored and has been scaled to meet the additional demand. Hospital facilities in Nelson Mandela Bay are supported by a large Field Hospital facility to provide additional beds. The facilities are increasing the available isolation and treatment beds to accommodate the additional demand. Wards with an additional ninety (90) oxygenated beds have also been completed at the Dora Nginza Hospital and a basement area at the Livingstone Hospital has been converted to provide 74 additional oxygenated beds. Both facilities are in the process of commissioning, with the recruitment of staff in process.

b) Various lessons were learnt in the response to the first wave, with adjustment of the implementation interventions:

(i) The lessons learnt in the first wave were captured in an Intra Action Review of the response under the guidance of the World Health Organisation (WHO). Where necessary rectifying actions have been implemented. The lessons learnt are being reviewed on an ongoing basis in a daily Incident Management Team (IMT) meeting of the Province.

(ii) The importance of the use of the personal protective equipment (PPE) is because it contributes towards the protection of the health care workers from infection. With the correct use of the PPE, the staff is able to avoid infection and as such is always on duty to provide the services to the people. In this regard the Department conducts ongoing training on the correct use of the required PPE for frontline workers. Stock levels of PPE are monitored continuously by the provincial pharmacy supply chain management, as reported regularly to the IMT. This ensures that PPE are always available to the frontline workers. At high volume facilities, marshals have been stationed to monitor the continuous sanitation of hands and use of masks and PPE.

END.

15 December 2020 - NW3005

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Hill-Lewis, Mr GG to ask the Minister of Finance

(1)With reference to the 2019-20 Annual Report of the Financial and Fiscal Commission, what are the reasons that Salary Level 16 has been left out of the following data tables, (a) Employment and vacancies by salary band on page 35, (b) Appointment and terminations on page 35 and (c) Performance reward by salary band on page 38; (2) on what grounds were two employees dismissed?

Reply:

1. The level 16 posting is that of the Chairperson of the Commission who is not an employee in terms of the definition and who serves on a five-year fixed term contract. The Chairperson’s remuneration is a Presidential determination after recommendation by the Independent Commission for the Remuneration of Public Office Bearers. Accordingly, the Chairperson of the Commission is not a recipient of performance rewards.

2. Two employees were dismissed after having been found guilty of the charges they were served with at their respective disciplinary hearings. The one employee was found guilty on a charge of sexual harassment, while the other was found quilty on a variety of charges relating to the transgression of the Public Finance Management Act, 1999 (Act 1 of 1999, as amended) and FFC Policies.

15 December 2020 - NW2984

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Mulder, Mr FJ to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

(1)What measures does his department have in place to prevent an international provider of digital services, such as Google and/or Facebook, from acquiring companies internationally and then bundling their products together in the local South African economy; (2) whether the Competition Commission, using the Facebook acquisition of WhatsApp as an example, has insisted that WhatsApp continues to operate independently from Facebook in the South African market, considering that neither product originated in the Republic; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details; (3) what is the approach to Amazon, given all the infrastructure and jobs that Amazon has been building in the Republic and which it can easily withdraw if the Competition Commission is persistent in this regard? [NW3812E]

Reply:

The Competition Commission of South Africa is empowered by the Competition Act (the Act) to review mergers and acquisitions in South Africa where an acquiring establishes control over an acquisition target. The Act requires the Commission to determine whether or not the merger is likely to have an anti-competitive effect, including whether or not the merger will result in the removal of an effective competitor. In addition, the Commission must assess whether or not the merger can be justified on substantial public interest grounds, by assessing the impact of the merger on (i) a particular industrial sector or region; (ii) employment; (iii) the ability of small and medium businesses, or firms controlled or owned by historically disadvantaged persons, to effectively enter into, participate in and or expand within the market; (iv) the ability of national industries to compete in international markets; and (v) the promotion of a greater spread of ownership, in particular to increase the levels of ownership by historically disadvantaged persons and workers in firms in the market. The provisions of the Act would apply to acquisitions by firms such as Google and/or Facebook where they acquire control of a target firm and where the transaction meets the thresholds set out in the legislation.

The Facebook/ WhatsApp transaction took place in 2015. I am advised that the transaction was not notifiable because WhatsApp did not generate any revenue in South Africa, meaning that the transaction did not meet the South African merger notification thresholds. However, both locally and globally, competition authorities have reconsidered the approach of competition authorities to regulating digital markets.

I am advised that the Competition Commission does not have any active cases against Amazon.

In general terms, over the last decade South Africa has played a global thought leader role in how to balance competition and public interest considerations in order to promote foreign investment whilst ensuring that mergers safeguard and promote jobs, localisation, and other dimensions of our public interest and our economic policy.

-END-

15 December 2020 - NW3000

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Lees, Mr RA to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

Whether the SA Bureau of Standards must approve speed hump designs on any level of government; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details? [

Reply:

I am advised by the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) that it is not required to approve speed hump designs or standards. The SABS is responsible for promulgating voluntary standards and not compulsory standards. The Department of Transport and Department of Public Works, local municipalities or an interested party or association could submit a request for the development of a new standard or a New Work Item for consideration as per the national standards development process.

-END-

15 December 2020 - NW2865

Profile picture: Cebekhulu, Inkosi RN

Cebekhulu, Inkosi RN to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

Whether, in view of recent media reports that have raised the alarm that funds allocated by the National Lotteries Commission (NLC) to build the Carnival Heritage Museum have not been properly utilised (details furnished), his department has (a) compelled the NLC to audit the books of the Cape Town Minstrel Carnival Association and (b) determined the Global Positioning System co-ordinates of the Carnival Heritage Museum; if not, why not, in each case; if so, what are the relevant details in each case?

Reply:

The forensic investigation into matters relating to NLC funding is currently underway and I await conclusion of the investigation.

I have also been furnished with a reply to the question submitted, by Ms Thabang Mampane, Commissioner of the National Lotteries Commission.

Ms Mampane’s reply is as follows:

(a) “At this stage, the Commission has established that the Minstrels’ Carnival Heritage Museum is housed at a rented property as per (b) below. The NLC is continues to ensure due diligence on the funding including reassessment of information and reports submitted and will at the appropriate time take remedial actions should the need arise.

(b) The address is ERF 82, 5/7 Crete Road, Wetton, Cape Town.

-END-

15 December 2020 - NW3034

Profile picture: Schreiber, Dr LA

Schreiber, Dr LA to ask the Minister of Small Business Development

What is the current total Rand value of her department’s backlog for paying service providers within 30 days in compliance with the provisions of the Public Finance Management Act, Act 1 of 1999?

Reply:

The Department of Small Business Development (DSBD) does not have a backlog of service providers’ invoices that prevents the Department from paying within 30 days as per Section 38 (1)(f) of the Public Finance Management Act.

Also, the Small Enterprise Development Agency (Seda) has no backlog. At the end of November 2020 did not have any creditors not paid within 30 days.

The total value of the Small Enterprise Finance Agency (sefa) invoices backlog by end of November 2020 amounted to R57 435.60. This amount relates to two service providers as follows:

Name of Service Provider

Invoice Number

Invoice Date

Amount

Comments

Sisanda Property Valuers

SE01/P005

28/09/2020

R9 453.00

Sisanda Property Valuers was appointed to assist with valuation services. The service provider invoiced sefa under a different company name: Liquidation Station (Pty) Ltd, which is not aligned with their original proposal. The email enquiry was sent to Sisanda Property Valuers to clarify the matter as they did not declare this information on the quotation. In their response Sisanda indicated that they secured a joint venture agreement with Liquidation Station (Pty) Ltd. sefa Supply Chain Management requested Sisanda Property Valuers to submit the JV documents/board resolution as proof to substantiate their claim. Multiple follow-up emails were sent to Sisanda Property Valuers and to date they have not responded.

Refinitiv UK Limited

98014597

30/10/2020

R47 982.60

A Purchase Order (PO) was issued to Refinitiv UK Limited, the service provider then raised an additional subscription invoice that exceeds the approved original PO amount. A submission for the additional invoice has been approved by the relevant business unit and the additional invoice will be settled by 18 December 2020.

Total

   

R57 435.60

 

_______________________________________________________________________________

RESPONSE RECOMMENDED BY:

_______________________

MR LINDOKUHLE MKHUMANE

ACTING DIRECTOR GENERAL: DEPARTMENT OF SMALL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

DATE:

______________________________________________________________________________

RESPONSE RECOMMENDED BY:

________________________

MS ROSEMARY CAPA, MP

DEPUTY MINISTER OF SMALL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

DATE:

_______________________________________________________________________________

RESPONSE APPROVED BY:

_________________________

MS KHUMBUDZO NTSHAVHENI, MP

MINISTER OF SMALL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

DATE: