ATC191125: Interim Report of the Portfolio Committee on Defence and Military Veterans on the Defence Amendment Bill [B18 - 2017] (National Assembly – sec 75), dated 20 November 2019.
Interim Report of the Portfolio Committee on Defence and Military Veterans on the Defence Amendment Bill [B18 - 2017] (National Assembly – sec 75), dated 20 November 2019.
The Portfolio Committee on Defence and Military Veterans, having considered the Defence Amendment Bill [B18 - 2017] and proposed amendment of the Select Committee on Security and Justice (see Announcements, Tablings and Committee Reports, 6 March 2019, p 73) referred to the Committee, reports as follows:
1. PARTICULARS OF THE PROPOSED LEGISLATION
The Minister of Defence and Military Veterans introduced the Defence Amendment Bill [B18 - 2017], which was tagged as a section 75 Bill not affecting provinces.
On 23 August 2018 the Portfolio Committee unanimously adopted the Defence Amendment Bill [B18-2017] without any amendments.
On 11 September 2018 the Bill was transmitted for concurrence to the NCOP and specifically to the Select Committee on Security and Justice. (ATC No. 123 – 2018)
The Select Committee considered and agreed to one new amendment that was not in the initial Bill as tabled, which is as follows:
1.1 New Amendment amending Section 103 in the principle Act:
“Board of inquiry in relation to absence without leave
103. (1) When any member of the Defence Force has been absent without leave [more than 30 days] for a continuous period exceeding 10 calendar days and is still absent, a board of inquiry must be convened by the officer commanding of the absent member to inquire into such absence.”
This is a technical amendment which is as a result of the amendment of Section 59 of the principal Act (Clause 8 amending Section 59 of the principal Act). Section 103 of the principal Act had to also be brought in line with the amendment in Clause 8, in order to remove the 30 days and substitute it with 10 calendar days absent in order to constitute a Board of Enquiry into the absence of a member of the Defence Force.
The Committee is of the opinion that the proposed amendment does not change the substance of the Bill in material respects, and is merely a consequential amendment. The proposed amendment will also not affect the tagging of the Bill.
2.OBJECTS OF THE PROPOSED LEGISLATION
The Objective of the Bill is to align the Defence Act (No. 42 of 2002) with current Departmental organisational requirements to enhance the efficiency of the Department of Defence. The Bill consists of 14 Clauses which are mostly technical in nature and which will allow for the alignment of the Defence Act with current realities.
3.PROCEDURE TO BE FOLLOWED
National Assembly Rule 249 (3) (b) provides that a committee, if it is considering a Bill that amends provisions of the legislation, may seek the permission of the Assembly to inquire into amending other provisions of that legislation.
In this regard, the Committee intends going beyond amending the sections originally anticipated in the Defence Amendment Bill, as tabled. In order for the Committee to amend the one section of the Act, the Assembly is required to grant permission for the Committee to do so.
The proposed additional amendment will have no financial implications, as it is consequential and will be technical in nature.
The Committee therefore recommends that the Assembly grants permission for the Committee to effect the one additional technical amendment to the proposed 2017 Defence Amendment Bill.
Report to be considered.
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