ATC190313: Report of the Portfolio Committee on Social Development on the processes it followed in dealing with a petition submitted by Mr Waters on behalf residents from East Rand, dated 13 March 2018

Social Development

Report of the Portfolio Committee on Social Development on the processes it followed in dealing with a petition submitted by Mr Waters on behalf residents from East Rand, dated 13 March 2018

  1. Background and introduction

The Portfolio Committee on Social Development received a petition on 07 September 2015. The Speaker of the National Assembly, Hon B Mbete, referred a petition to the Portfolio Committee on Social Development that was submitted by a Member of Parliament (MP) Mr Michael Waters. Mr Waters submitted the petition on behalf of the residents from the East Rand calling for an investigation into reasons for chronic underfunding of its Child Welfare organisations for consideration and reporting.

The Committee was required to consider the petition following due process and report back to the Speaker. The processes required to be followed by a Committee in considering petitions are regulated in Chapter 14 of the Rules of the National Assembly (9th edition). Rule 337 (d) makes provision for the Speaker to table written instruments including special petitions and other petitions of a general nature.  According to Rule 347 (1), a petition must be lodged by a member with the Secretary to Parliament for approval and must be signed at the beginning thereof by the member. Rule 347 (2) provides that a member may not lodge a petition on his or her own behalf, but such a petition may be lodged by another member.  Rule 350 (b) makes provision that if the petition is of a general nature, refer the petition to the relevant committee.

  1. Meetings held

On 15 March 2017, the Committee invited Mr Waters to present the content of the petition.  Having considered the content of the petition from Mr Waters the Committee thereafter informed the Department of Social Development about the petition.  On 01 November 2017, a meeting was facilitated between the national Department of Social Development, provincial Department of the Social Development and Mr Waters to receive responses on the issues raised in the petition.

  1. Deliberations

The Committee emphasized the urgency to have a finalized policy to fund Non Profit Organisations (NPOs).  In response, the department assured the Committee that Policy on Financial Award will be finalized after the 3rd quarter of 2017/ 2018 and it will present it to the Committee.  The Committee then agreed to set time within its committee programme to have an engagement with the NPO sector to discuss their funding needs and the work they do.

The Committee was of the view that petition by Mr Waters had opened an opportunity for it to look at the broader funding model of NPOs against the competing priorities of government.

The Committee was interested know the funding model of Extended Public Works Programme (EPWP) for Early Childhood Development (ECD). The department responded that funding of ECD programme is a conditional grant however the overall implementation of ECD comprehensive plan is funded by the Department of Social Development to the amount of R4 billion.

The Committee express concern that services provided by the NPOs are statutory services that have to be 100% funded but that is not happening and this required urgent attention.

The Committee expressed concern over discrepancies of funding of NPOs between provinces with some NPOs budgets drastically reduced with no explanation provided.  The Committee noted the serious need to address underfunding of NPOs. 

Mr Waters suggested that the Committee engages the National Lottery and the Department of Trade and Industry on the funding of NPOs. He acknowledged that the issue of underfunding of NPOs is not only limited to Gauteng.  It is an issue that affect all provinces.  Mr Waters agreed with the process that the department was going to take to finalize the Policy on Financial Award which would address the funding model of the NPOs.

  1. Resolutions
  • The Committee to organize a broader forum where it would engage on the NPO funding across provinces looking at their funding and challenges experienced. It will invite the national and provincial departments as well as NPO representatives to participate in the forum.
  • The department should provide the Committee with a copy of policy document on the financial award of NPOs.
  • The department should provide the Committee with a list of NPOs it funded in Gauteng province.


5. Recommendations

The Committee recommended that Minister of Social Development must ensure that:

  • The Department is encouraged to strengthen partnerships with NPOs.
  • The Department improves monitoring and evaluation of its programmes and those implemented by NPOs.


Report to be considered



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