Hansard: NCOP: Unrevised Hansard

House: National Council of Provinces

Date of Meeting: 02 May 2023


No summary available.


Watch video here: Plenary (Hybrid)


The Council met at 14:05.

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


The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Thank you very much, hon members. Before we proceed I would like to remind delegates of the Rules relating to virtual hybrid meetings and sittings. In particular, part 21, 22 and 23 of Rule 103, which provides as follows: That the hybrid sitting constitutes a sitting of the National Council of Provinces. Delegates in the hybrid sitting enjoy the same powers and privileges that apply in a sitting of the National Council of Provinces. For purposes of a quorum, all delegates who are logged onto the virtual platform shall be considered present. Delegates must switch on their

videos if they want to speak and they should ensure that the microphones on their gadgets are muted and must always remain muted. All delegates in the Chamber must connect to the virtual platform as well as insert their cards to register on the Chamber’s system. Delegates who are physically in the Chamber must use the floor microphones. All delegates may participate in the discussions through the chatroom. In addition, I would like to remind delegates that the interpretation facility is active. Permanent delegates, members of the executive and special delegates and Salga representatives on the virtual platform are requested to ensure that the interpretation facility on their gadgets are properly activated to facilitate access to the interpretation services. Salga and members of the executive in the Chamber should interpretation gadgets on their desks to access the interpretation facilities.

Hon delegates, in accordance with the Council Rule 229 (1), there will be notices of motion or motions without notice. Before we proceed to questions, I would like to take this opportunity to welcome the Ministers from the economic cluster, especially the Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development, the Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment and the Minister of Human Resources and Energy, as well as all permanent delegates, MECs, and all special delegates to the House.

Furthermore, I would like to remind delegates that in terms of Rule 229 of the Council Rules, the time for reply by a Minister to a question is five minutes. Sometimes this creates a bit of a problem as the responses turn to be a bit longer and take more time than anticipated. So, the time for reply by Ministers to a question is five minutes. Only four supplementary questions are allowed per question. A member who has asked the initial question will be the first to be afforded an opportunity, as members know, to ask a supplementary question. The time for asking a supplementary question is two minutes and the time for reply to a supplementary question is four minutes. The supplementary question must emanate, as members know, from the initial question.

I now take this opportunity and this moment to call on the Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development to respond to question 22. Maybe before we proceed, it may be a good idea for me just to indicate that question 22 is a question on protocol for citrus exports. This question comes from hon Modise and is directed to the Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development.


Question 22:

The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: Chairperson, colleagues, hon Ministers present, hon members of the NCOP, the question asked by Ms Modise regards the phytosanitary and protocols for citrus export, basically looking at issues of plant health.

I must say that in respect of the phytosanitary protocols for citrus exports to the European Union in particular, very little progress has been made. I say this because South Africa has been disputing the European Union citrus imports measures from the early 1990s. More especially on whether fresh fruit is a pathway for the introduction of citrus black ports into the EU. You know those little spots that are on our oranges?
That is why the EU has been disputing and saying that it is likely to send some plant diseases to the European Union, which we dispute because there hasn’t been any scientific measure to that regard. We have been going back and forth on this issue to find a best way on settling the disputes between the two, particularly using the International Plant Protection Convention. This process has been transparent by the way in which the European union has been responding to this matter.

In addition to that, early last year and its implementation around May/June, there was another new measure that was put by the European Union in respect of false codling moth, which is a pest that is usually found amongst fruits in the Sub-Saharan Africa, not only in Sub-Saharan Africa. There are protocols that were agreed to between the two, which in our view, the same protocols that had been followed in Israel, are the protocol as South Africa, we have been implementing. However, last year, the European Union increased the measures that our farmers must comply with. This has caused a lot of challenges in our citrus industry. More costs in terms of compliance that must be followed by our farmers. But also, the cost in terms of exporting. We have been engaging with the European Union in this regard. We have had technical meetings. We had also ministerial meetings late last year.

From where we sit, we are still not convinced about the measures that the European Union has actually put in place, particularly when it comes to scientific measure in this regard. We have requested the EU to send us their scientific report which indicates false codling moth is a pest that can affect negatively their jurisdiction. The farmers and ourselves have been engaging and looking at various ways in which we can address this matter and looking at the possibility of taking this matter to the World Trade Organisation.

Question two to the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development is not involved in the matter of per request to initiate an anti-dumping investigation against South African exporters of lemon juice in the United States. South Africa exports fresh fruits, particularly citrus to different markets including the European Union, Japan, South Korea, Thailand, People’s Republic of China, United States of America, Middle East, different African countries and others. Each import country has different phytosanitary imports requirements that South Africa has to comply with.

South African exporters of fresh fruits to US has been given accommodation and have been allowed, particularly from area where there are no black spots. In provinces of Western Cape, Northern Cape, Free State, and some parts of North West, in particular Taung and Christiana. The regions within the pest- free areas are demarcated by magisterial districts. False codling moth is also a pest of concern to the United States and in-transit call treatment is used as a mitigation option to control the pests.

I must just say, hon members, that this is one of the reasons that the European Union has been raising to say; why are we not complying with what they put in place when we have been complying with the United States. We have engaged to say; from the beginning of the negotiations, the European Union had a particular requirement which we had followed, and United States had its own requirement which we are following. So, it cannot be used without necessarily providing us with what has changed to what we have been doing thus far. Hon members, we will continue to engage and hopefully we will find one another because for us, European Union still remains an important market that we would like to retain for our farmers. Thank you very much.

Ms T C MODISE: Thank you very much hon Minister for a very detailed response. It shows that South African government in agriculture are doing very well. However, we are very much interested to get a full sense of the role of the department in supporting the citrus industry in South Africa to ensure compliance with the EU Citrus Black Spot risk management system, and whether the EU Citrus Black Spot risk management system has a negative impact on other integrated insect pest management programme, especially those that are aimed at the sustainable environmentally friendly means of controlling citrus production pests. Thank you very much.

The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: Thank you very much hon Modise for the follow up question in this matter. Indeed, the department has been assisting our farmers to be able to comply with the measures that our destinations - in terms of market access - have been negotiated. Even with European Union, we have been assisting our farmers with the compliance, even though we are disputing the scientific measure as it relates to whether or not Citrus Black Spots can actually be said that they are transmitting diseases to other destinations. So, we have done everything possible on our own to make sure that our farmers do get support so that we can be able to export our citrus industry to the world. I must say that the measures for compliance are not only made for export destinations because South Africans locally also need to be assured that what they get from their shelves is what meets the health standard. Thank you very much, hon Modise.

Mr M NHANHA: Minister, I take your point that at the level of the department you have done everything to try and mitigate negative impact of this impasse. But, the Citrus Growers Association of South Africa are calling for a political intervention at the highest level. They request the intervention of the President, with seemingly very little success. It is critical that the South African government put a stop to a looming crisis threatening the number one agricultural export in South Africa. I do hear you. You have done your best on your part. When will you rope in the President to resolve the matter? Thank you.

The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: Thank you very much hon Nhanha for the question, as well as the reflections that we have made. I must say that the President has actually been engaged on this matter and the Citrus Growers Association are fully aware of that fact. Last year when the President of Spain - at the time when he was the chair of European Union - came to South Africa, this is one of the issues that President Ramaphosa raised very sharply with the president of the European Union, in his capacity as the chair of the union at the time. But also, as the President of Spain.

I raise this because hon members you know that actually, our competitors in the European Union of the citrus is the Spain farmers. We have never seen it as a challenge because our seasons are complimentary. Only last year that there was a lack where there was a layover in terms of their season and our season. So, when there is always the pushback in the exports citrus, in particular in the European market, the Spanish farmers would have raised this issue within their jurisdiction. So when our President raised this issue and wanting to find a solution, he did that advisably because of his concern of our industry in South Africa, not only to the citrus, but to the agricultural industry as a whole. Even now, he continues being engaged on this matter because he believes as we do that this is an unfair practice, particularly by our trading partners, which needs a resolution. Thank you very much.

Ms S B LEHIHI: Chairperson, the South African citrus growers have been caught up with international red tape for decades, with little support received from this department. Which measures has the Minister put in place to ensure that - in the long term - the regulation imposed on citrus export will not translate to additional new costs on new growers, threatening the sustainability of the industry?


Ke a leboga, Modulasetulo.

The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: Hon members, firstly I think that it is important for us to appreciate that the South African farmers, in terms of compliance with phytosanitary and sanitary measures, have actually done their best. Supported by our ... [Inaudible.]
... environment as the department, but also further support that is given by our institutions such as the Perishable Products Export Control Board, PPECB, to make sure that they meet the standard for general application which is usually required by our exporting partners.

So with respect to compliance, that has not been a problem, which is the reason why the department, not only of agriculture, Department of Trade, Industry and Competition, as well as Foreign Affairs or Department of International Relations and Cooperation, has actually been engaged on this matter with our trading partners, in particularly the European Union in this respect because we do believe that the measures that are being put by the European Union in respect to both the black spots as well as the false codling moth are unfair. It would actually increase the cost of production and of export by the South African farmers. It is for this reason that we have been working with our citrus industry to make sure that we deal and address those matters. Secondly, we have not only been focusing on one market. We have been looking at other alternative markets in East Asia, as I have mentioned the countries earlier, as well as in the United States. Also in the middle East because we do believe that while we may have a dispute on what market, we must be able to expand the opportunities where our exporters can export their goods.
Thank you very much.

Mr M A P DE BRUYN: Chairperson, my question has been answered by the response from the Minister. Thank you.

Question 11:

The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: Hon Chairperson, indeed, the challenge that the Onderstepoort Biological Products, OBP, has been facing has necessitated a number of interventions.

Firstly, in the Fifth Administration it was about ensuring that we prepare the facility so that it can meet the requirements of production of vaccines for animal diseases.

When we took office in 2019 we were informed of the challenges that had happened in respect of that contract, which, unfortunately, is still in litigation between the contractor and OBP. However, we have also realised that there are issues of capacity that we need to address in order for the OBP to meet all their statutory requirements and be able to protect our herd.

I must say that currently, we have, in our engaging Aspen, which is one of the companies that we know that produces human

vaccine, to assist us in order to make sure that we are able to meet some of the requirements. The first line that is now in operation has actually been through the assistance of the engineering capacity from Aspen, and we continue to engage with them in this regard.

Secondly, we are also working with the registrar in our department to approve some of the applications that have been made by other private sector manufacturers of some of the vaccines such as the blue tongue and African horse sickness. And we do believe that ... ensuring that there’s a multiplier of suppliers in this regard will ensure that our animal herd is protected.

This does not mean, however, that we are not passing at positioning OBP to become a company that is actually doing its work as it must, in terms of protecting our herd by producing some of the critical vaccines that they have to. Thank you very much.

Ms C VISSER: Hon Minister, thank you for what you shared with us. But it stays with talks, we need action. Farmers, the stock farmers, the equine industry, all of them need answers.

We need like 10 million dosages of bloutong, it’s not available. Animals are dying and suffering.

And then, also, we need to know that there must be some transparent understanding from consumers out there: Why did this department, knowing about the R500 million failed upgrading, in preparedness, did nothing to inform the livestock and equine industries of the incapability to produce essential vaccines that will negatively impact on herd immunity and food security? Thank you.

The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: Hon Chairperson and hon members, I was looking at hon Visser and I was smiling because, indeed, she picked up from the question and the answer I gave that it is not just talk, it’s something that we are doing precisely because we understand that the farmers out there, but also consumers, are more concerned about the availability of vaccine for our animal herd.

I want to assure you, hon Visser, that I have been engaging with the Animal Health Forum because I do believe that transparency is important to ensure that our stakeholders have a full sense of where the challenges are; and we have not hidden that there are problems. That is why we have gone out to engage private sector partners who have got a capacity to assist the Onderstepoort Biological Products to be able to produce; that is why we are asking our registrar because we know that there are some private sector companies that ... particularly on the African horse sickness and blue tongue, have indicated that they ... [Inaudible.] ... have capacity to produce, so that they are registered as soon as is possible.

That are measures, not just talk. They are actual measures to make sure that we address the concerns that you and many others in this House and outside are actually having. Thank you very much, hon member.

Mr I NTSUBE: Minister, I just want to check with you: The interim measures in the immediate that are in place to ensure that the availability of critical vaccines for impending vaccination seasons and that livestock and animal breeders are ready for the weather evils that usually lead to the persistent rains in certain parts of the country and most likely to lead to disease outbreaks.

The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: Hon members, the question that has been asked, what are the interim measures? As I’ve indicated, one of those that we’ve been approaching other private sector companies to come on stream, the engineering capability that Aspen has, which is assisting us in this regard, but also procuring from outside South Africa, is we do when have the challenge of foot and mouth. We actually procure vaccines from Botswana when we do not have capability on our own in certain instances.
Agricultural Research Council, ARC, itself, has been asked to actually ramp up some of the production areas where they’ve got the capability.

So, all of those are interim measures to make sure that we do not have a challenge within this industry. Thank you very, hon member.

Mr N M HADEBE: Hon Minister, Onderstepoort Biological Products was established more than a century ago and it’s renowned worldwide for its innovative reciting livestock vaccine development. Because of its advanced research capabilities, many vaccines used worldwide were developed by the company, however, all these vaccines were developed before the company became corporatized, with the government as the sole shareholder.

Considering that lacking expertise and outdated technologies have been listed as key challenges. I would like to know from the hon Minister how your department aims to address this?
Thank you.


The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: Ngiyabonga Sihlalo nakuwe Bhungane. Ngitawutsi kuwe Bhungane lenkampani le ye-OBP bekuyi-directorate yelitiko. Ayikase ibe ngaphasi kwalomunye ngaphandle kwahulumende.


From its inception, OBP was actually a state entity, even though in its initial phase it was a directorate in the department. And the difficulty at the time was that as much as they undertook basic research, applied research were necessary, they never padded on its name as OBP. They were actually selling to third parties, then would brand those vaccines as theirs, when actually both the antigen and the

actual production would have come from government funding in the Department of Agriculture.

So, when government took a decision in 2000, was to make sure that as a state we can participate in the entirety of the value chain and be able to brand and trade in our own name.

There have been challenges and in answering this question in the beginning, one has admitted that, yes, there have been challenges. We started about the improving of the company, that was necessary, but at the same time losing capacity and ensuring that we are able to intervene at various levels by bringing other private sector partners to be able to ensure that the company is back on its knees. We will continue with that work because we appreciate the importance of this company, not only in the country but also some of the people who receive these vaccines from our shores. Thank you very much.

Ms S B LEHIHI: Which steps of intervention has the Minister taken to tackle the causes of the shortage of vaccines, so as to ensure that vaccines production occurs in timeous manner? Ke a leboga, Modulasetilo. [Thank you, Chairperson.]

The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: Hon Chair, I do think I have answered this question but I will repeat it. As I’ve indicated that we are wrapping up our own facility by also bringing in other private players to assist in the production phase. We have also ensured that we do get other private players to be registered as producers of these vaccines so that they too can produce and assist so that we do not have a challenge in this respect.

We will continue to ensure that where interim measures are required, where procurement can happen from outside, we will do so because what is important for us is maintaining our animal herd in good health. Thank you very much, hon member.

Question 26:

The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: Hon Chairperson to hon Mkiva, yes the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development signed contracts with all locust officers as at 28 February 2023. The contracts will end on 31 August 2023. New contracts will be developed for the new outbreak season close to the expiry of the current contracts to ensure that there is no void. The

contractors are already executing the work of controlling the outbreak.

I think it is important for me to indicate that, some of these contractors we are talking about are actually our farmers who have been very helpful, in ensuring that we control these locusts’ outbreaks that we have been seeing in the past year in particular. Thank you very much.

Mr Z MKIVA: Thank you Minister for the answer; I think it is straightforward answer.


Uyahlupha lo mba weentethe kuba wonakalisa izityalo zethu. Xa zifikile zingumndilili zifika sele zitshabalalisa.


Minister, I would like to make the follow-up question in the following manner, especially given the fact that in the 2021-
22 season, South Africa experienced the worst outbreak in 25 years, which affected more than 23 million hectares of land. The finalisation of these contracts is extremely critical.

In supporting the work of the locust officers, are there any plans to look at the use of hi-tech early warning systems to monitor locust swarm movements, and collect more data to make it very easy for the district locust officers to determine where to spray, which swarms are the biggest and which swarms to spray first. How far are we in that process hon Minister?

The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT. I think most of us here and maybe some who are young may not know this, we grew up when our parents were telling us about isikhonyane (the grasshopper) which is what we are actually facing. I must say that, these locusts in South Africa because many of us might not have known, have been breeding in the Northern Cape and they’ve been managed. That is why we never had a problem of any outbreak. However, as we all know, the challenges of climate change and what happens in our ecosystem has actually necessitated the spread that we saw last year. This is why we had, I must say a bit of a challenge because the span in which these locusts actually spread, was beyond the geographic area where they’ve always been contained over the years.

I must say that, I want to thank our farmers and other controllers, who have really been helpful in ensuring that we manage this challenge, including some of the private sector companies such as Kumba who actually contributed to make sure that we can have more chemicals to be able to continue to spray at the time at which needed to.

The question you are asking as to whether we are including technological advancement, to be able to assess and be able to monitor on time to see where these locusts may be. Yes, we do and must because it is critical for us to be able to have a foresight where some of these challenges and be able to activate and act on time. Thank you very much.

Mr M A P DE BRUYN: Hon Minister, what measures have been put in place to ensure that the repeat of last year’s issues regarding the nonpayment of locust officers and critical service providers, will not happen again this year in order to ensure the effective control of locust outbreaks? Thank you.

The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: Firstly, it has been to ensure that we finalise the contracts early, but also in engagement with the contractors, those who are producing medicines and those that are spraying. We actually have a line of engagement to make sure that we do not have the challenges that we experienced last year. I must say though that, part of the challenges that we experienced last year had nothing to do with nonpayment.

Some of it was because some of the callers were holding medication because they were anticipating that it might continue, which is contrary to the agreement that we had. Thank you very much.

Ms S A LUTHULI: Minister, with the discovery of natural gas in Namibia and Mozambique, yields opportunities to boost South Africa Africa’s economy and ... [Inaudible] ... development in the long term. If so, please provide details with regard as it relates to women and youth. Thank you.

The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: Hon Chairperson, I am not sure whether this question is not meant for my colleague, the Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy. If it is a question related to me, it would be a bit new and not arising from the question. Thank you very much.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Yes, hon Luthuli, on what point are you rising?

Ms S A LUTHULI: Chairperson, that question is related to her because it is from the main question which was asked by hon Mkiva.


DEVELOPMENT: Hon Chairperson... [Interjections.]

An HON MEMBER: Are you sure Luthuli?

The MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE, LAND REFORM AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT: The main question related to the control of locusts, which is what we are dealing with now.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Ja (yes), I am sure hon Luthuli would like to think over the matter. So, we will proceed, hon Aucamp.

Ms C VISSER: Minister I am still with you on the locusts. Apart from the contracts with locust officers that must be in place, it is equally important that the additional support

that must receive must be in place as well. It was therefore worrying see that during last year’s locust outbreak, locust officers were not equipped with the correct quality of personal protective equipment, PPE required to work with pesticides. They were furthermore not allowed to claim for more than 150 kilometres of traveling per day, which is in a vast and outstretched province like the Northern Cape is far too insufficient.

A further threat to the containment of last year’s locust outbreak was the availability and distribution of pesticides, as well as national and provincial government’s refusal to declare these outbreaks as a disaster. Minister, what is your department doing to ensure that in 2023, there will not be a repeat of all the shortcomings that occurred during the locust outbreak in 2022? Thank you


DEVELOPMENT: Thank you very much hon Chairperson and hon member for the follow-up questions. I agree that indeed, there has to be appropriate PPE outfits that are given out to those who are spraying pesticides, so that their health can be protected as well. Secondly, with regards to the claims, I

will give the follow-up question in written form, because I may not speak off-the-cuff without knowing the detail as to where that happened in what were the circumstances. So we will do a follow up on that one. Yes, we will do our best to ensure that what happened last, whatever weaknesses that might have been there will be addressed. Thank you very much.

Question 4:


DEVELOPMENT: Hon Chairperson, the question relates to underspending, whether or not such underspending did not have negative consequences for our producers. I think it's important for me to indicate that, as the government, there is no way we can say any form of underspending, no matter how little would not have an impact on service delivery in particular in this area of work. We will be the first to admit that, yes, there was an impact in respect of this underspending, particularly if one looks at the delay in the support to the Presidential Employment Stimulus, Pesi, which was the R231 million that had to go back to the fiscus, even though we applied and we were given that rollover, the delay had happened, which means, therefore, the farmers were not able to farm at the time they needed to.

Secondly, part of the underspending related to the compensation of employees and that underspending was
R276 million, and I would like to indicate that, yes, that would have an impact because otherwise those warm bodies that we need, it doesn't matter whether they might be in administration or it might be technical services, there are critical skills that would support our farmers and, therefore, it's not something that we can be happy about that as a department we have had such underspending.

I would like to indicate that in respect of the work of the agency the National Agricultural Marketing Council, NAMC, which has also been asked, I want to indicate that through its agribusiness development division, it facilitates market access for farmers, especially smallholder farmers who are most disadvantaged in terms of market information, compliance with South Africa's official Perishable Product Export Certification, packaging, quality control, consistency, logistics planning and business linkages with potential buyers.

Between April to June 2021, 21 smallholder farmers from Ntabankulu linked with the Kei Fresh Produce Market to supply

vegetables. The farmers are organised into small projects and co-operatives and farming in a total of 81 hectares collectively. Seven potato farmers from Limpopo and one farmer from KwaZulu-Natal were linked with the Garankuwa Market and Crop Box Market to supply Mondial potatoes. Between July to September 2021, 20 vegetable farmers from the Botshabelo area in the Free State province were linked with the Garankuwa Fresh Produce Market to supply onions.

The farmers specialise in various vegetable production and farming of 64,5 hectares in total. The NAMC, in collaboration with the National Lucerne Trust linked 19 lucerne producers from the North West province Greater Taung Municipality with Lucerne/hay traders, as well as with AGRISA, SA Alfalfa (Pty) Ltd, OVK and Triangle Commodity Trading SA (Pty) Ltd, to supply small, large, high-density and round Lucerne bales.
During October, and December 2021, the NAMC in collaboration with the Jozini local office of the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development, linked 22 goat farmers with the KwaZulu-Natal Qhakaza Goats Market. The farmers specialise in indigenous crossbred and Boer goats.

From January to April 2022, 28 farmers were linked with the Freshway Market in Tshwane to supply potatoes. The farmers are from the Mkhonjeni rural area in the Jozini Municipality, Umkhanyakude District in KwaZulu-Natal. I'm raising this to indicate that, yes, though there might have been challenges, there has been working that our entities have done to support small-scale farmers to be able to link with the markets, some markets closer, some far. Thank you very much, hon member.

Mr M J MAGWALA: Thank you, Chairperson, and greetings to you Chairperson, the hon Ministers present in the House and hon members, thank you, Minister, for answering that question lengthily and long. It seems like a good question, but my supplementary question is like this, Minister, the government has a crucial role to play in increasing the market participation of emerging farmers. Yet to date, small-scale farmers have faced a number of limited factors under your leadership.

If the department is underspending its budget, which is intended to help small-scale farmers, how will it assist farmers who are facing challenges in agricultural sustainability, water scarcity, degradation of the ecosystem

services as well as the financial crisis facing the poor communities? Thank you.


DEVELOPMENT: Thank you very much, hon Chairperson and the hon member for your follow-up question. Indeed, as I indicated earlier that no government can be happy or content on any underspending or even overspending, where it has occurred but more particularly underspending because it does have an impact on the delivery of services to those that need it most.

What I was just reflecting with you is that, yes, this underspending has had an impact, but despite that, this work that was done to link farmers with markets, we will continue to ensure that we spend the resources that this Parliament have appropriated in support of our producers. Thank you very much.

Mr F J BADENHORST: Hon Minister, good afternoon. Welcome to the NCOP. Thank you, Chair for the opportunity. Hon Minister, in a time of food security and rapidly rising food costs, the agricultural sectors never needed more government support, not only for their survival, but also for the survival of all

South Africans. Thank you, Minister, for your admission of maladministration that you've just done to the House, with the underspending and the reasons you've given for the underspending. We appreciate the honesty. Thank you for that. My question to you though is, will the senior managers and the director-general be held accountable for this underspending?
Will the Minister reallocate the unspent funding of small- scale farmers to the provinces that have the capacity to improve the development of small-scale farmers, and will you meet with the SA Farmers Association, with the Black Farmers Association and apologise on behalf of your administration and your department for failing the small-scale farmers? Thank you, Minister.


DEVELOPMENT: Thank you very much, hon Chairperson and the hon member Badenhorst, it was a good welcome you gave me, but I must say, I do not agree that what one was agreeing to is maladministration. What I indicated was that, yes, there has been underspending and I've explained areas where such understanding has happened. I also indicated that no government can be happy where underspending has occurred because it has an impact on the delivery of services. So I'm

sure on that one we agree. Regarding the question about apologising, I would not know where it comes from because I've not heard the African Farmers' Association of South Africa, Afasa, or any other black farmers’ organisation arguing for an apology.

We have been working with Afasa, with the National African Farmers' Union, Nafu, the Farmers United South Africa, Fusa, Agri SA, and TUT. As for all farmers' organisations, we engage them and we support them where the need arises. We're going to the World Farmers' Congress, for instance, where Southern African Agri Initiative, SAII, and Afasa are the members, of farmers' organisations in South Africa. They've engaged with us as the government to work with them to support their hosting of the World Congress, which we have done and have agreed to, so we'll be going and I'm sure they will invite you to be part of that World Congress because it's an important platform with South Africa's farmers engaging globally, putting South Africa on the map in terms of what farmers are doing.

The director-general and senior managers, yes, are engaged in respect of how we improve this understanding and what are the

causes of such underspending. That's accountability in my view. Thank you very much, hon Badenhorst.

Ms W NGWENYA: Chair, hon Minister, the presentation on the underspending goods and services is very concerning for us as the Council that represents the interests of the provinces. It puts unfair blemishes on the good work that you are doing in this sector. What is the main reason for the slow expenditure on goods and services and what measures are you putting in place to ensure that underspending on goods and services is addressed? Finally, Minister, what are the reasons for the underspending on the compensation of employees?

IsiZulu: Ngiyabonga.



DEVELOPMENT: Chairperson, ...


... ngibonge, ngicabanga ukuthi umele u-Salga ...


... Am I right? Oh! ... [Interjections.] ...


Ngiyabonga, Sihlalo weNdlu, mangisho nje ukuthi ... [Ubuwelewele.] ... umele i-Gauteng. [Uhleko.]


Thank you very much, hon member, indeed the issue you are raising does impact the provinces as well as the local government, but in this instance, the underspending with respect in terms of goods and services was with respect to goods such as computers and others, which were supposed to be bought by our provincial offices, not your provincial governments per se. There was a delay in procurement, unfortunately, that resulted in underspending and we will indeed try to address that going forward on timing on when such procurement is done so that it does not impact negatively on the spending of our budget.

That goes also for the compensation of employees in terms of the time it takes for the adverts or recruitment and all of those processes, which we have spoken with the director- general, and I must say that the President himself has been

concerned and has spoken to the directors-general through the Forum of South African Directors-General Fosad, which is the Forum of Directors General of South Africa, Fosad, to impress upon them that we need to fill up vacant posts in government because they are important for the functionality of our state. Thank you very much

Mr N M HADEBE: Hon Chairperson, hon Minister, your department has responded that the late submission and payment of invoices contributed to underspending. However, considering that there are many small-scale farmers struggling to penetrate the market, I would like to know what administrative measures your department has put in place to ensure underspent funds are redirected to the small-scale farmers. Thank you, Chairperson.


DEVELOPMENT: Thank you very much, hon Chairperson, hon Hadebe and hon members, and it's important for me to indicate that unspent funds go back to Treasury if they're not spent at the end of the financial year. A department can apply for rollovers, where they indicate what the reasons are for that underspending and why is it important for Treasury to be sensitive and appreciate the need for a rollover, and there

are requirements in terms of the Public Finance Management Act when such rollovers are allowed.

I don't think one can say the unspent funds can be reallocated to a particular programme because they had not been spending that particular year, and then, therefore, they will go back to Treasury. Thank you very much, hon member.

Question 12:


DEVELOPMENT: Thank you very much, hon Chairperson. I have already answered that question.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: I am sure, hon Visser is happy.

Ms C VISSER: I am sorry, Minister. I work with people who demand answers and if I can just bring this to you. I know that you have almost covered everything, but if I can just bring this to you that we must remember that there are people who lost their existence because they need horses for transport in mountainous areas and I cannot get down the mountain or up the mountain. They cannot get to pensions or to food or to medical assistance and they want to know how will

they be compensated for losing all the animals and all the horses? One man phoned me he lost seven horses, he is 78- years-old, how must he get down the mountain. When it is 11 o’clock at night they phone you and ask please assist where can we find vaccine? Thank you, Minister.


DEVELOPMENT: Thank you, hon Chairperson and hon Visser. As I indicated earlier, the question had been answered and had follow up questions four of them, Chairperson. But on that matter, hon Chairperson, I will be glad to actually give you in writing and engage with the relevant parties that you have identified and we would appreciate if we can get their contacts from you. Thank you very much, hon Chairperson.


Moh S B LEHIHI: Modulasetilo ... [Chairperson]


 ... the lack of vaccines at OBP is a major challenge which is a consequence of several factors. The main one being the deliberate sabotage and exploitation of state-owned enterprises, which is classic of an ANC government department.

Minister, why is the African horse disease vaccine and several others which are needed for livestock farming still not available? Thank you.


DEVELOPMENT: Well Chairperson, it is a bit difficult because this question is exactly the same as the other question that is related to OBP that one has answered. And, I am not sure whether I can say anything more than what I said because this relates to the issues of lack of availability of vaccines, what are we doing about it.

We explained what interim measures, we did. We did explain, Chairperson and I would appeal to hon members if they do not mind that this question. I know, it might be a new question, but it is exactly the same like the one that we had addressed in respect of other support biological products and it is lack of availability of certain vaccines in the market, such as African horse sickness vaccine that is not available. So, I am not sure hon member whether I can give you the new answer either than to say that currently there are challenges on production. That’s why we have gone out to approach Aspen to assist us, which they have done. One line is back on

production, we have also ensured that our registrar must actually allow some of the private players who have indicated to us that they will be able to produce blue tongue and African horse sickness vaccine. Thank you very much.

Mr M A P DE BRYN: Thank you, Chairperson. Minister, in an answer to your colleague in the National Assembly, it was stated that the vaccine for African horse sickness will be available by the 7th of April this year, and as you know it’s unfortunately still not the case. Minister, what measures are put in place to ensure that these animals are kept alive and will the farmers be compensated for their losses as a result of the lack of or the shortages of the vaccines? Thank you.


DEVELOPMENT: Well, Chairperson, if I may just ask this specific question with regards to compensation. You know that the Animal Disease Act of 1994. It states that:

The owner of any animal or other thing which has been destroyed or otherwise disposed of pursuant to any control measure or any provision of section 17 subsection 3 or 5 or any other provision in this Act by director or on his

authority may submit an application for compensation for the loss of the animal or thing to the director.

Animals which have died of a disease do not form part of this definition and thus the owner does not qualify for compensation in terms of the Animal Disease Act of 1994. I think the Act in terms of when compensation is applicable, it is where the cause of such destruction of an animal has been as a result of a decision that has been made by the state official. Thank you very much.


Nk L C BEBEE: Ngiyabonga Sihlalo. Okwami Mphathiswa woMnyango ukuthi cha usuyiphendulile le mibuzo, kodwa manje kufanele ukuthi bazi ontabakayikhonjwa ukuthi...


 ... I am aware of the meeting that you had with the African Health and Protocols and Onderstepoort Biological Products to look into their concern relating to the issue of the African horse sickness cases.


Ngaloko ngibalula ukuthi uhambile wayohlangana nazo zonke lezo zinhlaka ukubonisa ukuthi uMnyango wakho uzimisele kangakanani ngokuthi kwenzeke zonke lezo zinto. Akengibuze.


What measures are in place to ensure that we are prepared for the next vaccination season in June.


Lapho ke Mphathiswa woMnyango ukubacacisela nje ukuthi vele, vele uMnyango wakho ...


... is on point.


Izinto zihamba ngohlelo lwakhona. Ngiyabonga, Sihlalo.



KWEZINDAWO ZASEMAKHAYA: Ngiyabonga kuwe Sihlalo nakulunga elihloniphekile umama uBebee ukuthi impela njengoba usuchaza nje. Sihlanganile nalabo abangabafuyi bamahhashi ikakhulukazi

inhlangano yabo ebizwa ngokuthi Equine Industry kodwa futhi sahlanga sibahlanganisa nayo inhlangano le ye-Onderspoort ukuthi sibonisane ukuthi senzenjani. Ezinye ke zalezo zincomo kwaba ukuthi asenze noma yini esingayenza siwuMnyango, siwuhulumeni ukuze kuthi uma sekufika isikhathi lapho kufanele sijove lamahhashi sibe sinayo imijovo. Njengoba besengishilo ke ukuthi eminye yalemijovo uma singenayo thina kwa-OBP sizoyithenga ukuze ibe khona. Uma thina singenayo futhi bakhona abanye abasozimboni asebaziqhakambisile basho ngaphambili kwethu ukuthi bona bangakwazi ukuthi bayenze lemijovo. Ngikhulumile naloyomuntu eMnyangweni obhalisa izinkampani ezenza amachiza ukuthi uma labo abathi bangakwazi ukwenza behlangana kutholakala ukuthi yonke imiqhathango bayilandele ngendlela mababhaliswe ngokusemthethweni ukuze nabo bakwazi ukukhiqiza. Loko kuyosiza ukuthi izilwane zethu zingaba senkingeni njengoba sesike sayibona nje. Ngiyabonga.

Question 27:


DEVELOPMENT: Hon Chairperson, the question from hon Nyambi refers to the challenge that we know, as a country, in respect of the conflict between Ukraine and Russia, which has had a negative impact on the production, particularly in those areas

of wheat. As we know, a number of countries get their wheat from that jurisdiction. The question therefore wanted to know what measures we, as a country, have been undertaking.

I would like to indicate that the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development has been continuously engaging with the grains industry, the agricultural freedom groups, the Agricultural Research Council, ARC, and the South African Farmers Development Association to discuss food production, availability of food supplies and farming inputs amidst this conflict.

Through these engagements, the industry role players have highlighted the need to drive long-term inclusive growth in the sector. Working with the ARC, the department is finalising quantification and mapping of areas suitable for the massification of wheat production, to realise more entrants by small and emergent producers into the production of this commodity.

I must say that South Africa is a wheat producer in the Western Cape, in particular, for now. Even though we are producing, we are not meeting our requirements, as a country.

That is why part of the complementarities is through imports that we get. We have been getting some of those imports from Ukraine, some of them from Australia. So, it has not been just one jurisdiction. So, that is why we have been able to cope.

However, part of the work that the ARC has been doing has been to look at production of wheat in other areas of our country. That is why I am referring to some quantification and mapping that has been done to look for the suitability of soil for production of wheat.

Parliament is making deliberate efforts to follow up on this call by addressing constraints to agricultural growth, including access to funding for a new entrant’s market, including improving domestic grain production.

The focus intervention includes launching of the blended finance scheme, in partnership with land Bank as well as IDC. This is aimed at availing blended funding to support producers engaged in the value chain and aggregation activities.

In 2021, wheat production in South Africa was approximately 2,3 million metric tons, an increase of roughly 6,5%, compare

to 2020. The relatively low production of wheat across Southern Africa is principally because of drought and heat and biotic, which Russian wheat, aphid, yellow rust, stem rust, septoria ... I will not bore you with all those scientific names. Those are increasing intensity and frequency under climate change and thus rendering production of wheat economically less attractive for a number of producers.

Though wheat is a targeted commodity within the agricultural process masterplan, it is envisaged that the uptake would be slow over time to meet the self-sufficiency threshold. Thank you very much.

Mr N M HADEBE: Hon Chairperson, hon Minister, what is the government’s plan to turn South Africa from a major wheat importer to an exporter, in addressing the decline of produce from 2020-21 production season? Thank you.


DEVELOPMENT: Hon Chairperson, I have indicated, there is work that has been done from a research point of view as well as testing, looking at the other areas, where commodities such as

wheat can be produced. This, in my view, answers the concern the hon member has.

It is however important to appreciate that any country would look at its comparative advantage. We may like to be self- sufficient on everything, but the ecosystem may not allow us to do so. So, we will have to look at those areas where we can do better and use our climatic resources in a manner that supports our production. So, we will do that, supported by our research, but also look at our food plate as a country and how we would structure it.

I always say, if you were to take South Africa and Southern Africa in particular, maybe be long time ago, their stable food was not maize, but was actually millet and sorghum. Over time, they did produce maize in their staple, which was actually a foreign crop from Southern Africa and later they produced rice.

So, as the challenges of climate change also come upon all of us globally, we will also have to relook at the types of food that are good for our country. Thank you.

Mr M J MAGWALA: Chairperson, Minister, would you agree that there is an urgency to expropriate land without compensation for equal distribution, particularly to address the issue of equality, in the access of the grain market for young black female farmers in particular? If so, which steps has the Minister taken to intensify the fight against organised crime that undermines domestic infrastructure. Lastly, is there an export market to South African wheat farmers and to what extent is this industry ... [Inaudible.] ... on international prices to ensure its success or failure? Thank you.


DEVELOPMENT: Hon member, I must say that I do appreciate the questions that the hon member has asked, but some of them do not lie within the purview of my responsibilities. And I am sure that you know that. We are in... [Inaudible.] ... about issues of crime, where it impacts not only South African citizens but also our farming community, particularly because our producers are a very important part when it comes to food production or food security of our country as well as export.

The issue of the export environment on our wheat, I think, it is important for me to indicate, as I have earlier, that the

wheat that we produce in our country is mostly for domestic consumption. In order to complement that, we usually import from countries that have a comparative advantage in the production of wheat. We import from a number of jurisdictions, not only from one. And we are looking at other ways of how we could produce wheat in other regions of our country, other than the Western Cape.

With respect of the issue of land access, for me it is an important matter that we need to look at, and how we make available land to those who need it and how in particular, in the allocation of land, we are able to look at issues of youth and women, in particular. These are out new producers that will make sure that food security, as a country, is possible, not only for now but in the future. I am saying that government’s land reform programme might be seen to be slow, but I must say that it is working.

For me what is more important is how we all support those who received land to produce, so that the land does not lay fallow and that it can actually be put it into production, to ensure food security. Thank you.

Mr T J BRAUTESETH: Hon Chairperson, hon Minister, it is good to see you again in the House. The Russian-Ukraine conflict has been simmering since 2014. It came to a boiling point in February 2022. It does concern me that we are looking for places for wheat. Surely, we should already be there now because the Russian-Ukraine problem is not new. Over the same period, your government, through its ruthless policy of cadre deployment has destroyed Foskor, which played a major role in insulating South Africa against fertiliser shortages, which play a major role in the supply and cost of wheat. In addition, we have missed a massive opportunity to export fertilisers to the fertiliser-starved global market. Against this background, what urgent interventions would you and your department and government make to remedy this crisis? Thank you.


DEVELOPMENT: Hon Chair, hon member, I am happy that you are welcoming me in the House. I really missed the NCOP over time. Firstly, I will start by saying that language is very important because it is my government and your government. You might not be in power for now, but it is our government. Yes, it is ours, including you.

I must say that I don’t think it is correct, in our analysis, to say Foskor was destroyed. Foskor, like any other company had particular challenges, they had been producing, the had been exporting and they had particular challenges. There was a point at which the board wanted to sell off. Myself and Minister Patel actually had an engagement with the board and indicated to them that we are not supporting that initiative by the board to sell off, because we think it is an important company of South Africa that must continue to play in the fertilising industry. And I still believe that right now, because fertiliser remains to be a critical component of production.

Therefore, some of the small-scale farmers, when they approach government to get assistance with wheat and fertiliser, we actually have done so, because we appreciate that there have been stresses that need to be addressed.

So, we are working with Foskor to ensure that they are able to remain as a dominant player in the fertilising industry. Thank you.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon members, we now come to the end of questions to Minister of Agriculture, Land and Reform and Rural Development. I would like to thank the hon Minister for availing herself to answer question.

Question 28:


afternoon to everybody. Thank you very much, hon Ntsube. The wetlands are amongst the most diverse and productive ecosystems. They provide the essential services and supply all our fresh water. However, they continue to be degraded and converted to other uses. The Ramsar Convention is a global response which is aimed at conserving and ensuring the wise use of all wetlands through local and national action, as well as international co-operation as a contribution towards achieving sustainable development.

South Africa has been a contracting party to the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands since 1975. As a signatory we have a number of obligations including the identification and designation of sites containing representative rare or unique wetlands. The designation of Ramsar is to maintain those wetland systems that are globally, regionally and nationally

important. In addition, the inclusion of a wetland list embodies the commitment of countries in taking the steps necessary to ensure that its ecological character is maintained and also to ensure that we elevate the importance and awareness of these symptoms globally.

The Middle Point Nature Reserve site was designated owing to its importance as a breeding habitat for the white-winged fluff tail which is one of the rarest and most threatened of the African water birds. Conserving the species in addition to other important ones and the wetland upon which it depends, meets our commitments in terms of the Ramsar Convention, but also in terms of the African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbird Agreement, an intergovernmental treaty designated to the conservation of migratory water birds.

With regard to question (b) wetlands serve as natural flood storage areas that trap and release surface water slowly.
Additionally, trees with systems and other wetland vegetation cause flood waters to move more slow and to cover flood plants with less force. This not only ensures water storage but it ensures that when there is flooding, it reduces the stream of flooding, reduces erosion, enhances water quality and also

make sure that during heavy rains groundwater is recharged. Furthermore, wetlands are highly productive systems and our biodiversity hotspots.

Communities play a very central role in conserving wetlands and there are many ways in which communities can assist, including participating in citizen science initiatives. Such information is used to improve knowledge on wetlands, knowing where the wetlands are and participating in awareness events generates knowledge of these systems. Communities can conserve wetlands by abiding by South Africa’s wetland legislation and reporting illegal activities. In this regard we have a hotline where these activities can be reported. There are also numerous incidents where community members recognising the value and importance of wetlands have come to form interest groups and have adopted wetlands. Their activities have included removing alien and invasive vegetation and cleanups. Thank you very much.

Mr I NTSUBE: Chair, we say that we welcome and appreciate the response from the Minister. I think it was a well thought and articulated response. I don’t think there’s a supplementary

question from us. [Inaudible.] ... our questions were answered very succinctly. Thank you very much.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Thank you very much. We will move to the second supplementary question from hon Visser. Hon Visser.


The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Yes. Uh, sorry, is hon ... you are correct, correct. You are bringing my attention into something else. Hon Labuschagne is taking this question.

Ms C LABUSCHAGNE: I nearly thought I made a mistake. Thank you Minister for the feedback. As you said that the Middle Point Nature Reserve is the only confirmed site with nearly distinct white-winged fluff tail breed in South Africa. We all know that Middle Point is part of the greater lagoon for protected area. The Working for Wetlands Programme in the department focuses on the wise use of wetlands with employment creation and poverty alleviation as we need that in our country.

Now, given the significance of Middelvlei as a wetland within a protected area and the applications for the harvesting of peat, what guarantee can you give us that the peat harvesting from this Ramsar site will not be detrimental to the biodiversity of Middelvlei?


very much, hon member. I think that obviously in our approach to conservation in general, we support and uphold the question of sustainable use. In determining sustainable use, this is a scientific matter which the relevant offtake will need to be appropriately calculated so that - as you correctly indicate - one does not undermine the function of the system. Where there would be the necessity to prevent of exploitation, that would also have to be done by our environmental management inspectors. Thank you very much.

Mr M A P De BRUYN: Chair, my question has been covered by the initial response. Thank you.

Mr M S MOLETSANE: Minister, despite the existence of co- operating institutions for wetlands and resource protection, there currently exists a lack of capacity and resources within

your department both at a national and provincial levels which has resulted in a number of challenges in implementing environmental laws which are vital in the conservation of wetlands. To date, what has the Minister done to ensure the proper enforcement of policies on wetlands management which currently stands as the major challenge facing community-based conservation of wetlands? Thank you, Chairperson.


very much, hon member. I think that in all conservation endeavors there are really two approaches. The first approach must always be community involvement. Unless communities understand why having protected areas are important and unless communities are able to benefit from the existence of protected areas, there will always be a situation of underperformance in protection of those areas and there will always be a situation of conflict. It is for this reason that over the past few years our department has prioritised relationships with communities that are around protected areas and relationships with communities living with wetlands.

Obviously, our Expanded Public Works Programme is one important source of employment for those communities and we

know that this is very significant and important because often there are no other viable alternatives. However, what we also understand is that communities want to benefit from protected areas to a greater extent than just enjoying Expanded Public Works Programmes. We now have something called the Groen Sebenza Programme. It is a programme where we have together with provincial authorities employed almost 2000 young scientists and we are working with these young scientists using them to undertake conservation work in all of our conservation entities which includes serving the National Biodiversity Institute.

The other approach that we are taking is to make sure that where we need to undertake construction we are using local construction firms. This has been something using these local construction firms to upgrade the quality of our tourist office and also our staff accommodation. It has been very important to small rural construction firms, many of whom have now qualified in terms of the Construction Industry Development Board, CIDB, offerings and are now able to apply for more significant work elsewhere in the country.

I did mention that there is the other approach to conservation and that is an enforcement approach and of course where there is flagrant disregard for the law we have no or alternative but to use our environmental management inspectors. However, my view is that this is something that we have to do but it is not the ultimate solution to the relationship between communities and protected areas. Thank you very much.

Question 14:


Labuschagne, it’s a pity that you didn’t ask this question to the Minister who was here before me because she’s the person that deals with land claims. However, let me say that according to the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development, of the 152 claims outstanding, 11 have been settled since the approval of the commercial forestry master plan, four of which were settled after the presentation made to the portfolio committee in March 2022.

With regard to the second question, all the plantations of the department will either be managed through a lease or a community forestry agreement depending on the nature of the plantation as well as interests by industry and affected

communities. Therefore, where affected communities are interested to participate and become owner-growers, this is our preferred solution. To ensure sustainability plantations where community forestry agreement will be signed, the private sector will be brought into participate as investors. We would appreciate that if you are going to upgrade these plantations considerable capital investment to clear the land, replant with new seedlings, and so on, since when we would want to have a partnership with the private sector. We’ve commenced with consultations with communities in the Eastern Cape where most of the plantations are located. Thank you very much.

Ms C LABUSCHAGNE: Thank you, Minister, for the detailed answer and I’m glad that and even of those land claims have been settled. However, Minister, until now lease or management agreements have not prevented the invasion of forestry land, the commercial forestry master plan presented at ... [Inaudible.] ... to prevent invasions in a future as you explained in a previous written question does not refer to any explicit plan of all action for the governance of these communities or parts of these communities based on the track record of allowing a situation to develop to crisis point before abdicating responsibility where communities also be

handed back to the owner department to be used as a political playground for smaller parties and ... [Inaudible.] ... for the ANC, and I’m referring here to the ... [Inaudible.] ... that the Minister is very well-aware of where personal illegally sold it for election resulted in a community of now more than 20 000 people living in dire circumstances posing an environmental risk of the ... [Inaudible.] ... close to it and being passed on from one national department to another one before ... [Inaudible.] ... provincial and local governments. Minister, what assurance do we have that these communities should not be the same?


Labuschagne, I don’t want to get into the ... [Inaudible.] ... debacle this afternoon that I think was a process where we tried repeatedly a whole range of mechanisms to prevent that particular invasion. However, unfortunately, we didn’t get adequate support from the owner department that is water under the bridge. Now, I think that one needs to distinguish between that situation and the situation that we have in many other areas where bona fide land claimants which are occupying land in forestry areas and would be open and willing to the community forestry agreements that I’m speaking of, and I have

to date already facilitate two of those agreements. Obviously, we have to work with the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development to a certain verification that these communities, indeed, have verified land claims in relation to that land.

Therefore, in my experience the two cases that I’m dealing with is that the situation has been very satisfactory, and everybody is happy. I think that if I were to be critical of our department, I would say that part of the problem has taken much, much too long for these agreements to get off the ground and I have indicated to the director-general that we need to move with speed on this so that we don’t face some of the difficulties which in my view will entirely unnecessary in the
... [Inaudible.] ... situation. Thank you.

Mr M J MAGWALA: Greetings to the Minister. Minister, it all goes down to one question which the first cardinal pillar of the EFF in terms of we need to expropriate a land without compensation so that all these departments can have their land not to delay the agreements and everything, because once you are the custodian of the land you will be able to do everything, maybe even the Minister in the Mineral Resources

and Energy or Electricity will need land for his new generators or power stations that they’re bringing. Therefore, land question needs to be addressed properly, Minister. It’s not only in your department where there is a problem.

However, getting into my follow-up questions the forest industry has important role to play in a contribution to the economy, especially in terms of creating job opportunities and addressing the basic needs of our people. Why have there been delays in these claims and what measures have the Minister put in place to fast-track the outstanding land claims? It’s all about land, land, land. Let’s expropriate the land. Thank you.


that when it comes to the settlement of land claims Minister Didiza is the appropriate Minister to speak to. However, I think that where you and I would absolutely agree is that communities with an interest in conducting forestry activities who are bona fide claimants to that land do not need to wait for the land claims to be settled. Therefore, that is the mechanism that I have at my disposal to fast-track. So, where there is agreement these are the bona fide payments of that land and where there is an interests for those claimants to

enter into forestry activities because I only have custodianship of this land as long as it’s used for forestry, otherwise, it has got to go back to public works. Then we can enter into this community forestry agreements and as I’ve indicated we’ve already entered into two in the Eastern Cape. Therefore, that’s how I think that we can move forward and cut the red tape. Thank you very much.

Ms L C BEBEE: Chairperson of the House, through you to the hon Minister, thank you with your responses and my question is very short. I’ll just want to know if is there any timeframe to finalise consultations with the communities where the plantations are located. Thank you very much, Chairperson.


what I’ve already indicated is that timeframes with regard to land claims Minister Didiza is in charge. However, where claimant communities want to become involved in forestry that can approach us and we will move with speed to reach these communities settlement agreement.

Mr N M HADEBE: Hon Chairperson, through you to the hon Minister, I would like to know how your department is

mediating the dichotomy between the environmental needs for reforestation and redressing the social need for land claims in fostered areas through community education initiatives.


ask the hon member just to repeat the last part of his question? He said through community, and I couldn’t get the last phrase.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon Hadebe, please speak a bit louder closer the microphone, and speak a bit slower.

Mr N M HADEBE: Hon Chairperson, my question was that I would like to know from the hon Minister how her department is mediating the dichotomy between the environmental needs for reforestation and redressing the social need for land claims in fostered areas through community education initiatives.


very much, hon member. I think that first of all one needs to be clear that the land parcels that we are putting out for either commercial or community initiatives are land parcels that in terms of a planning legislation are identified for

commercial forestry. They would, of course, be other areas which also fall under the forestry branch that are identified for indigenous tree deforestation, and that would be linked to expand our carbon sinks and are protected areas estate.
However, with regard to those areas, what we are calling our category ... [Inaudible.] ... forests the bulk of which are in the Eastern Cape. I have explained that we are putting these land parcels out where there is interest from industry, industry would be required to fund a community partner. Where there is interests from land claimants at communities, they would be required and would try and pay them up with an industry partner so that they have a partner to finance the recapitalisation of the forests.

This is something that is very expensive and I think that’s what we understand is that unless there’s a clear support process when one is dealing with handing over agricultural forestry land to communities, unless there’s a clear support process those initiatives are inevitably going to fail.
Therefore, that is why we have this in the forestry sector master plan, we have this partnership between industry that will take a timber offtake and will also recapitalise and replant the areas and communities who will be responsible for

looking after the forests while they are growing, and who will ultimately benefit from the industry offtake when the trees are ready to be harvested. Thank you very much.

Question 29:


Marine Living Resources Act recognises three distinct and different fishing sectors, namely the local commercial, small- scale and recreational sectors. Commercial fishing rights are processed through a competitive process between South African companies and individuals.

Small-scale fishing rights are allocated in a noncompetitive, noncomparative process that serves to provide access to marine resources to coastal fishing communities. The small-scale fishery sector acknowledges the historical exclusion of traditional fishers from long-term rights allocation.
Accordingly, the small-scale fishing sector provides the mechanism for allocating rights and ensuring equitable access to marine living resources for small fishing communities.

To date, the department has allocated 15-year rights to more than ... [Inaudible.] ... small-scale fishing co-operatives in

the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and the Northern Cape provinces. These co-operatives currently support 7 000 small- scale fishermen and women.

With regard to fishing communities in the Western Cape, we identified and declared small-scale fishers in March this year and we are in the process of facilitating the registration of small-scale fishing co-operatives and the allocation of 15- year rights to these co-operatives by October this year. It is anticipated that the department will assist in the establishment of another 60 small-scale co-operatives in the Western Cape.

We are facilitating support programmes for small-scale fisheries and we have worked with a number of municipalities, provincial government departments and national government departments. We have signed a memorandum of understanding, MOU, with the Department of Small Business Development. The purpose of this memorandum is to provide business and technical support to small-scale fishing co-operatives to realise their sustainability. We are also launching a mentorship programme so that each small-scale co-operative

will have a mentor to help them over the next three years. Thank you very much.

Ms L C BEBEE: Hon Minister, listening to you it is clear that government is looking at holistically developing and assisting small-scale farmers. Is there any specific reason why the allocation of fishing rights in the Western Cape has taken longer than the other coastal provinces? Thank you, Chairperson.


there is a reason. What happened was that in 2019-20 when I was first appointed, I undertook a tour of fishing communities in the Western Cape. In every one of those meetings, there were extensive allegations made about corruption in the rights allocation process to small-scale fisher people in the Western Cape.

Following on those allegations, I instituted an independent forensic investigation and I got the results of that investigation in 2021. This investigation indeed confirmed that the process was lacking in good governance and bona fides, and that there were people who were traditional fishing

persons who had been excluded and people who were not traditional fishing persons who had been included.

I then approached the High Court in the Western Cape to annul the process. It took over a year to receive that annulment but we did and we then started the process afresh. As I said, in March this year we allocated to a number of individuals. We are now in the appeals process because those who had been excluded have a right to appeal. The appeals process closed at the end of April and once I have had an opportunity to consider the appeals we will then finalise the process. As we have explained, we hope to finalise by October this year.
Thank you very much.

Mr N M HADEBE: Hon Minister, I would like to know what measures your department has in place to capacitate small- scale farmers, particularly women and persons with disabilities, to continue sustainably contributing to their local economies without the possibility of being overshadowed by large fishing companies. Thank you.


member, I think I have already explained that we have entered

into an MOU with the Department of Small Business Development to provide training. We are allocating mentors to each of the co-operatives and we also have a number of relationships with provincial government departments and municipalities that have supplied these co-operatives with boats and with tackle. Some of the co-operatives are now entering into ... because the 15- year rights give them a sustained income, they have been able to purchase boats so that they can fish more effectively.

I think what’s important to say is that under the Marine Living Resources Act, the Total Allowable Catch, TAC, and the Total Allowable Effort are divided between the commercial sectors and the small-scale sectors, and in all fisheries where there is an overlap, there would be a sharing of the allocated TAC so that there is a portion set aside for the small-scale sector.

Ms C LABUSCHAGNE: Minister, as you have already shared with us that the management of the small-scale fishing process in the Western Cape has been a complete disaster, with you as the Minister having to go to court to set aside the previous failed process as you explained, can you please advise us what corrective steps have been taken against the operator or

operators of the previous failed process, and taking that into account, will you consider devolving the authority to grant these rights to competent provincial authorities such as those
... [Inaudible.] ... DA led in the Western Cape? Thank you.


Labuschagne, fishing is not a co-operative power. It’s always important before you ask for allocations to read the Constitution. There’s no provision to give the Western Cape government those powers.

There was a service provider that actually ran the previous process, hon Labuschagne. I don’t have the information with me with regard to whether there was any remedial action taken against that service provider. However, it’s something that, if you pose a question to me for written reply, I’ll gladly supply that to you. Thank you.

Ms S A LUTHULI: Minister ...


... kuyaqondakala ukuthi abadobi bamabhizinisi amancane babonakala becindezelekile futhi bengenayo indawo. Yiziphi

izinhlelo ezikhona ukulungisa ukubonakala kokungalingani kwabo ikakhulukazi abantu besifazane nentsha futhi abantu besifazane siyabona babonakala bevalelwa ngaphandle emphakathi wabadobi?


The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: ... [Inaudible.] ... was a bit of a problem there to link up but briefly the question ...
Luthuli, if there is anything that I leave out, please add. The question is about small-scale farming and you are making an observation that there seems to be some challenges around programmes or projects to redress ... But, you are saying this is especially acute in relation to women. So, you are asking if there are programmes ...


... zikhona yini izinhlelo?


That is the essence of your question, unless there is something that I missed. If there’s anything that you want to add, please add.


Nk S A LUTHULI: Sihlalo kuzolekelela ukuthi kuqashwe abantu abatolikayo ngoba nakuba uSihlalo ezama, umbuzo wami akawubekanga ngendlela. Ngibuza ukuthi njengoba sibona abantu besifazane nentsha kukhona ukungalingani. Yiziphi izinhlelo eninazo ukulungisa ukungalingani kwabantu besifazane nentsha? Ikakhulukazi abantu besifazane noma bekhona emkhakheni kodwa ababaningi babonakala bevalelwa ngaphandle. Yiziphi izinhlelo ezikhona? Ngiyabonga.


The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Luthuli, I thought I knew Zulu quite well. Your question is really about programmes. Are there programmes available to address the question of the limited number of women and youth in this area of work.


member, I humbly apologise that English is my only language. Hon member, you are absolutely correct that fishing — whether on the commercial side or on the small-scale side — has historically been a male-dominated area. One of the sad issues that I found when I undertook that tour of the Western Cape is that co-operatives involving women particularly, felt that

they had not been given an opportunity to qualify as bona fide co-operatives. In many other provinces where I have met co- operatives, there are few co-operatives that are owned and run by women but there are many co-operatives that have women members. I suppose that part of the reason is that the criteria is that people have to prove that their families have historically been involved as fisherpersons, and I think that we all understand that our history is a patriarchal history where women were not owners of the means of production in any sense.

However, we have tried wherever we can to include women, and even in the commercial rights allocation, one of the questions that I track as I deal with the appeals is the question of women ownership, youth ownership and also ownership by historically disabled people.

Of course, youth ownership is very complicated in the small- scale sector because of this issue of having to prove historical ownership, which was usually used with the head of the family who was male and older. However, again we are finding that younger people, particularly the sons and daughters of traditional fisherpersons are in those co-

operatives, and hopefully through their participation in the co-operatives in due course they themselves will also get rights. Thank you very much.

Question 20:


member, this question is about the Jagersfontein disaster that occurred in September 2022. I think it is important to say that the main government departments that were involved in this were the Department of Water and Sanitation because there were rivers, dams and streams that were polluted as well as the Department of Mineral Resources.

As a result of our work along with the Free State Department of Economic, Small Business Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs, there have been a number of directives that have been issued to the relevant company to clean up as a result of the spill.

Our contribution is that we seconded specialists to the team that was setup to do the cleanup and the role of those specialist was to provide technical support to the Free State

department and other government authorities that were working on this.

As a result, all of the agencies involved have been able to stabilize the road leading into the towns of Jagerfontein and Fauresmith. Urgent repairs were required to the Jagersfontein wastewater treatment facility, urgent relocation of sewers to prevent further run off, temporary containments structures to prevent the remobilization of tailings and the implementation of best practice during the extensive cleanup operation which is underway.

This team’s work has resulted in immediate clean up and containment of the spill tailings from the environment as well as ensuring and more importantly that the wastewater treatment facility and the Eskom sub-station are stored and will become fully operational.

However, it is important to mention that emergency interventions were undertaken by the Department of Water and Sanitation, the provincial Department of Economic Development and ourselves to establish the safety concerns in relation to the stability of the dam which failed and to instruct

immediate steps to be taken to clean and limit the migration of spill tailings further into the environment.

Now, hon member, given the extent of the damage which covers in excess over 65 kilometres, the cleanup process will take time. We are involved in ongoing scientific studies to ensure that every possible option is considered to expedite the remediation of the effected work. As I said, our specialists and scientist are working regularly with the task teams that are involved. Thank you.

Mr M A P DE BRUYN: Thank you for the response Minister. Is there currently any type of report available that stipulates the extent of the damages to the farming community of Jagersfontein area as a result of the pollution caused by the tailings and are there any plans in place to compensate the farmers for those damages as the result of the pollution?
Thank you.


always a report prepared in these situations. As I explained, we are not the directly responsible departments. We are involved in the scientific advisory capacity. But what I can

tell you from previous experiences of this sort, there is always a report that is produced and then decisions are taken with regard to whether there should be criminal prosecutions and so on.

I would imagine ... again this is just knowledge that I have of previous situations where we have encountered this kind of thing. It’s normal that there would be some kind of mediations set up between those responsible and those who would be impacted on so that discussions can take place regarding remediation.

I would imagine that the Free State department would be a better place than I am to be able to directly answer these questions as they are the authority that is directly dealing with the situation.

For example, if I have to draw a parallel with the chemical spill that happened in the uMhlanga estuary in July 2021, there is facilitation mechanism between those that would have been impacted on and the company concerned and part of that process regards the polluter pace principle whereby the

company in this instance has to remediate to the satisfaction of those directly impacted on.

I would think that, given the fact that there is this polluter pays principle, it would be important for that process to be put in motion. That is just advise from the scientific adviser.

Mr M R BARA: Minister, climate change on the consequential severe weather patterns is a reality in our country. What contingencies have been put in place by your department to protect our water resources from pollution and possible long standing impact on humans and animals in the event of more disasters such as Jagersfontein? Thank you.


this false under the category of a new question but I will answer it anyway. The primary custodian of our water resources is the Department of Water and Sanitation. As it correctly indicates, South Africa is one of the countries in the top 30 driest countries in the world and we know that the impact of climate change is that it will become drier and drier.

Part of our protected areas expansion strategy deals with the issue of protecting our strategic water resources. More than 50% of our rivers’ sources occur on the eastern part of the Drakensburg of escarpment. Some of those areas are protected and others are not but in a water scare country, it obviously becomes very important to protect those strategic water resources. That is an ongoing discussion between ourselves and the Department of Water and Sanitation. Thank you very much.

Mr M S MOLETSANE: Minister, as fare as you know, are there any disciplinary measures in place against the Jagersfontein mine since the warnings about the disaster were indicated as early as the year 2020? Thank you


the Minister of Mineral Resources smiling at me, maybe he knows the answer. I don’t know the answer but what I do know is that in these circumstances, once an investigation is completed there is a report and the report will then recommend whether there should be criminal or civil cases. I guess that is where the answer to this question lies. Thank you.

Mr Z MKIVA: Hon Minister thank you for the response to the question. Hon Chairperson, I am expressing my appreciation to the Minister for the answers that are given thus far. With the work that has been undertaken after the disaster in Jagersfontein, is the Minister comfortable that the instrument that has been used will contain and prevent further contamination of the area during the next raining season?
Thank very much Chairperson.


member, I am advised by my technical experts that they are comfortable that the temporary measures will last. Also, because over a 1 000 hectares of fine tailings have already been removed, they are of the view that this will lower the risk of further spillage. Thank you very much.

Question 15:


hear the Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy who is going to speak eloquently on environmental matters. Hon members, in his weekly letter of 24 April 2023, His Excellency, President Ramaphosa emphasised that, South Africa remains committed to reduce carbon emissions by 2030 to within a target range which

is compatible with limiting global warming to 1,5 C. This is so that we can avoid the worst, physical risks of climate change including droughts, floods and other climate disasters.

The President also said that, to avoid the transition risks of climate change, we must ensure that our goods and services in the long-term rank competitive in the rapidly decarbonising world, with the ever-present threat of carbon border adjustments. In terms of compliance with the 2020 Minimum Emission Standards, MES, by 31 March 2025, the current legal framework provides for power stations that will decommission by 2030, to apply for suspension of compliance with the 2020 Minimum Emission Standards.

These stations are only required to comply with the 2015 Minimum Emission Standards. These standards relates to sulphate and nitrox, and are not primarily related to greenhouse gas, GHG, emissions, which is where the Nationally Determined Contribution, NDC, come in. The President indicated that, to prevent load shedding, we may need to revisit our decommissioning schedule. The process of re-examining our timeframes is not a reversal of our position of the Just Energy Transition, JET.

Any decision on decommissioning will be informed by detailed technical assessment of the feasibility of continuing to operate older plants. It will also be informed by the timeframe in which we can expect new capacity from other energy sources that impacts on our decarbonisation trajectory to come on stream. So, we are saying that, within the 2030 timeframe of the NDC, there is room to reconsider some of the decommissioning schedules that might be occurring this year or next year. Thank you very much.

Ms C LABUSCHAGNE: Through you, Chairperson. Minister, yes, thank you very much for the answer. You know, in a country that is desperate to end load shedding, some of the journalists referred to this plan of the Minister of Energy as a plot to win an election, and the rest of the country is very anxious because we all know that the Cabinet is in a total disarray on which direction to take, resulting at this stage at no action at all. What’s important is that, it is all in the press for those that have seen it.

So, I’m asking you now that, the most important question highlighted by our load shedding crisis is about all the options for the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and

Environment, come 31 March 2025 as most of the power stations do not comply to the the national ambient air quality standards, NAAQS, and you also go on us to say that, on the decommissioning programme, there is a loophole.

What about the other six strategies and agreements that has already been on Cabinet, that is furnished to you that probed on this question? Thank you.


hon Labuschagne I like you and your questions, but when you insult my Cabinet, I’m afraid I have to hit back. So, let me say this, you are extremely confused about the issue of Minimum Emission Standards and greenhouse gas emissions. It’s two different sets of issues, and perhaps that’s why you get confused about what’s going on in Cabinet. Let me explain it to you.

There are two sets of things that are going on here. So, in terms of the Nationally Determined Contribution to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that causes climate change, we have submitted what we call an NDC or our National Determined Contribution to the United Nations. What the President

indicated in his newsletter is that, the NDC requires certain things by 2030.

What it doesn’t require in the middle of energy crisis is that, we must take units that are operating in Kendoon Power Station right now off the grid, right now, in the middle of load shedding crisis. That would be, I’m sure you also agree that it can’t take care of it. Okay? So, that is the decommissioning schedule.

Ms C LABUSCHAGNE: I’m sorry, Chair


still confused, that’s why you are interrupting me.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: What are you rising on, hon Labuschagne?

Ms C LABUSCHAGNE: No, Chair, with all due respect of the rules of the House, I have never said none of these questions that are ... [Interjections.]

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: I am asking you, hon Labuschagne.

Ms C LABUSCHAGNE: It’s misleading. On the rules of misleading the House, I have never said in this question or imply that
... [Interjections.]

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: On what point are you rising, hon Labuschagne?

Ms C LABUSCHAGNE: On a point of misleading the House. The Minister said that, they can’t stop the power station in the middle of the crisis. I have never suggested or said that it must be done. Thank you.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: That’s not a point of order, that’s not a point of privilege, and there’s no such thing as rising on a point of misleading, or whatever.

Ms C LABUSCHAGNE: It is ... [Interjections.]

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon member, please don’t do that. Don’t abuse the platform because you want to debate a particular point. You can come up with the motion, whatever and so on, but please don’t abuse the right to freedom of expression and so on. Thank you very much. We will proceed to

hon Hadebe. By the way, the Minister was still trying to conclude. Please continue, Minister.


the question clearly said: “With reference to a proposed option to extend the life of coal-fired power stations.” So, in two months’ time, there is a plan to decommission some units at Kendoon Power Station. The Minister of Energy is of the opinion that now is not the appropriate time to decommission those particular units.

What I was explaining to the hon member is that, we can still meet our NDC targets by 2030, and we can take a decision to delay taking these units at Kendoon, offline, at a later point between now and 2030. It is not necessary to do it right now. I was also explaining to the hon member is that, there is a separate regulatory jurisdiction that deals with the same power station, and that is a regulatory jurisdiction to deal with what you and I would call, air pollution. Sulphate and
nitrogen oxides that are released from the burning of coal.

So, what the law provides for is that, as long as these plants are going to decommission by 2030, they are exempt from the

2025 regulations. If they decide to continue after 2035, they would not be exempt from the regulations and they would need to put in the air abatement technology. Thank you very much, hon Chairperson.

Mr N M HADEBE: Through you, Chairperson. Hon Minister, considering the contradictory and costly nature of the proposal to potentially extent the life of coal fired power station, how has your department collaborated with the Minister of Electricity to ensure an equal balance struck between the prioritisation of renewable energy and coal fired power, especially considering the environmental impact coal fired power has? Thank you, Chairperson.


it’s the job of the Minister of Energy to put megawatts on the grid, and not the Minister of Environment, but anyway. Let’s agree that, the key issue here is that we’ve got to look at modelling, and the National Treasury has indicated that there is modelling exercise to look at the site of these power stations, what it will cost to fix them, including that modelling, in our view, has to be the question of whether or how we could meet our Nationally Determined Contribution

commitments, and also, modelling on the air pollution implications of these decisions.

It is our view, and we have conveyed that to the Minister of Energy that modelling on meeting the CO2 emission targets and the sulphate and nitric targets need to be included on the modelling that will be done on the decommissioning schedule of these coal fired power plants. Thank you.

Mr M J MAGWALA: Chairperson, I can see that the minister is very much warm. You will have to forgive us, Minister, this question does seem to confuse at some point, and it directly goes to the Minister of Electricity. That is why I have... But in the light of how South Africa is currently battling to keep the lights on, as the Minister puts sufficient measures in place, should the coal fired power station fail to meet the Minimum Emission Standard by 31 March 2025, if so, please provide details. Thank you.


member, I think I’ve already explained that, these coal fired power stations that are due for decommissioning by 2030, do not need to comply with the 2025 standards, provided that they

are decommissioning by 2030. Should there be a decision to extend their life beyond 2030, then they will have to introduce the required abatement technology, so that they comply. Thank you.

Ms T C MODISE: Through you, hon Chairperson. Thank you, Minister, for your detailed response. Hon Minister, does this revisiting the decommissioning schedule mean that the government moves away from its Just Energy Transition Investment Plan, JETIP? Thank you.


at all. I think that, if you look at the key aspects of the JET Investment Plan, they are tricky aspects. The first one is electricity, the second is electric vehicles and the third is green hydrogen. The purpose of this plan is a recognition that there is an extensive technological change taking place across the globe. South Africa has a very important vehicle manufacturing industry.

We want to make sure that, by the time carbon border tariffs are introduced by the European Union in the 2030s, therefore manufacturing industry should still be competitive. We want to

make sure that we take advantage of our future technology and our abundant sunlight to produce green hydrogen, which is necessary for the hard, as an energy supply for hard-to-abate sectors like iron, steel and cement.

Lot of the JETIP money has to deal with transmission problems that Eskom has, and what we understand is that, one of the ways in which we can get alternative power unto the grid, is to improve the transmission network. At the moment, we’ve got about 800 megawatts renewables in the Northern Cape that are effectively stranded, because the transmission grid is not able to take more megawatts at this point in time. So, this investment is very necessary.

What we will have to look at is, and this is the subject of the modelling that is being done. What are the implications for the money that is intended to repurpose the old coal fired power stations, if we delay or revisit the decommissioning schedule over the next couple of years, to ensure any key security at the present time?

Question 30:


Chair, the Second Local Government Indaba created a platform for engagement between different spheres of government to discuss the challenges faced by local government in fulfilling their environmental mandate.

The indaba was also aimed at prioritizing areas for a programme of action that will inform the 2024 and 2028 local government support strategy for the environmental sector.

In the indaba we focused on the following areas: equality management, biodiversity and conservation, climate change, waste management, coastal management, forestry and other related functions such as integrated environmental management, environmental compliance and enforcement.

The Second Local Government Indaba also had a commission dedicated to municipal waste management. The commission provided municipalities a platform to extension, share knowledge on waste, collection challenges in the municipalities and how municipalities can improve in addressing collection services in rural and urban areas.

The commission also discussed other policy and operational ... [Inaudible.] ... interventions which would enable our department to continue to support municipalities through issues such as the development of bylaws as well as monitoring and enforcement of compliance.

We also discussed partnerships between national and provincial environmental sectors and local government to create more employment opportunities for communities through cleaning and greening programmes.

The municipalities involved reiterated their commitment to cleaning standards and cleanliness levels and the reintroduction of the cleanest city campaign in order to strengthen community participation, advocacy and awareness. Thank you very much.

Ms W NGWENYA: Hon Minister, thank you for your comprehensive response to my question. This is co-operative governance at work.

Does the department see this indaba continuing in future, as this will definitely assist municipalities in dealing with environment issues? Thank you, Chair.


Chair, yes, we have discussed with SA Local Government Association, SALGA, continuing this programme in future years and SALGA has indicated that the programme was well received by municipalities and they would like to make this an annual event. Thank you.

Mr S F DU TOIT: Hon Minister, as alluded by you, the Local Government Environment Indaba, the theme of it was “Working Towards Local Environmental Sustainability”. Now, Minister, there are lot of municipalities that currently doesn’t adhere to legislation pertaining to environment.

And Minister, I would like to know what measures are in place to ensure that these municipalities do adhere to these prescripts as well as to the fact that they are supposed to support local entities like working on fire in the municipality areas and also adhere and situate that the necessary fire breaks are in place?

We are currently sitting in the situation in the North West Province at the J B Marks Local Municipality, where there’s court case currently on hand with regard to the municipality and adherence to some of these policies; if you could maybe elaborate on that. Thank you.


member, I think this is exactly why we had requested SALGA, that we should have this indaba. Because, you would be aware that there has been a municipal election, in many instances, there are new administrations and new councillors in place. And we thought it would be very important to be able to share with municipalities exactly what their responsibilities are.

We know that many municipalities have serious revenue challenges and the consequence of those revenue challenges is that certain services are no provided on a regular basis and certain infrastructure is not adequately maintained. And we know that in many municipalities the reason that there’s dumping, for example, is because households are not receiving weekly refuse collection.

So, I think the part of the purpose of the indaba was to try and raise awareness about what the necessary functions need to be and what the consequences can be for failure to implement those functions.

I think that in certain instances where we have to issue notices because functions are not being adequately complied with, we might find a situation where municipalities are not aware that they are supposed to be complying with certain activities.

So, I think that really what we were trying to do was to have a carrot exercise to say this is what you are supposed to do, this is the support we can give you, please tell us where you have problems, before we necessarily would come in with the stick.

I am aware that there have been difficulties with regard to some of the issues pertaining to fire management and I think that this is one of the reasons that ... we are very concerned, hon member, that the National Veld and Forest Fire Act now sits on the desks of this House. And we really would like to urge you to implement it, to process it with speed.

I am going to write to you, hon House Chair, about this Bill because it’s been sitting with you now for about a couple of months and I don’t see it on new agenda of processing.

It’s very urgent, hon members, because one of the things this Bill does is that it makes compulsory for municipalities to participate in these fire associations. At the moment it’s voluntary and all the time it’s voluntary then you can have institutions deciding whether they will or want to participate.

So, I really would want to urge all of you, can we address this Bill; we need it desperately. The management of wild fire is becoming an increasingly serious issue in rural areas and it will only get worse with climate change. Thanks very much.


Rre K MOTSAMAI: Tona, puso selegae ...


... forms the frontline of service delivery for citizens across the country and should play an important role in the protection of the environment. Yet, this rule is left

neglected by the ANC. As a result, the issues relating to the environment are given low priority. Which is why the EFF has taken it up upon itself to conduct clean up campaigns across the country through the Andries Tatane Campaign.

Minister, what did the indaba resolve about the poor performance of municipalities in fulfilling their mandate in relation to the environment in our townships, as those spaces are always left neglected? I thank you, Chair.


member, I am delighted that you are a fan of municipal clean ups. Because as you know, you are in coalition with the ruling party in many of those Gauteng municipalities where there are difficulties with clean ups. So, I have no doubt that you would be supporting us in ensuring that in townships and in rural areas where communities, as you correctly indicate, do not receive weekly refuse. I am sure now that you are there, you will work together with us to make sure it happens. Thank you very much.

Mr D R RYDER: Minister, local government, unfortunately, continue to dump sewage into water fossils, local government

operates landfills illegally, they neglect the air pollution responsibilities and other constitutional mandates.

Now, the uncontrolled continuation of situations like this is actually in violation of laws and constitute criminal offences. The department can and does issue directives to municipal managers and to local governments when this occurs.

Were there any discussions at the indaba as to how the department will act against municipal managers and local governments that ignore these directives? Thank you.


member, as I explained, the indaba was the carrot. What we explained is that it also a stick. And I think the idea was to proof compliance so that we have to use the stick less frequently than we are currently doing.

As you correctly indicate, there are a number of municipalities where we have had to issue enforcement notices and really it’s not how we want to run things because once you get into this then you’ve got be in court and so on and so forth.

We have, over the last couple of years, instituted a whole range of measures to ensure that the waste management strategy of 2020 is being implemented by municipalities. We have supported municipalities to develop their own waste management strategies. We have secured an agreement from Treasury that the Municipal Infrastructure Grant, MIG, money can be used to purchase yellow fleet because very often the reason that you’re not getting regular refuse collection is because the yellow fleet is sitting on bricks somewhere. In the purchase of that yellow fleet we are working off the National Treasury database and all of those vehicles come with a built-in maintenance contract so that they don’t land up joining their brothers and sisters on bricks.

We have instituted Extended Public Works Programmes, EPWPs. We have given every district municipality 120 EPWP persons, 60 to every local municipality to help with clean ups. And we also work with provincial departments on targeted municipalities.
Every year where the dumping has got out of hand, we move in with the provinces to clean up so that the province can get back on track.

So, I think that - as I said - it’s a combination carrot and stick and part of what we are doing is to improve the relationship so that the outputs and the outcomes should also improve. Thank you very much.

Mr M DANGOR: Chairperson, if I may. I just want to correct some language in the House. The Chairperson, the hon Amos Masondo, is the Chairperson of the NCOP and the presiding officer, he is not the House Chairperson, as some people have referred to him and I don’t blame the member from the EFF in the Western Cape, is new. Thank you very much.

Question 31:


when you talk about fatalities in the mining industry you cannot avoid looking back and remember that there was a disaster in Coalbrook where 437 workers died in one day; you cannot avoid looking back at Kinross and appreciate the fact that 177 workers died in one disaster; and look at Vaal Reefs and remember that 52 workers died in one disaster. Therefore, the industry has a resolution to strive for zero harm in the industry so that mineworkers go to work and come back alive.

Having said that, we took the period of 1993 to 2022 to look into the numbers and see where there is improvement. In 1993 there were 653 fatalities, and in 2022 we had the lowest number of fatalities which was 49. That is not enough because there were 49 deaths in the mining industry and that cannot be accepted.

What is it that we are doing to achieve these continuous improvements? I want to start with something called stakeholder engagement. We do not view health and safety as conflict between labour and the employers. We all agree that when it comes to health and safety everyone is on the same side and we must work together to reduce disasters in the industry. That is why it is important for them to be part of getting solutions rather than fighting over accidents and fatalities. That is the first intervention.

The second one is legislation. We have strengthened the legislation — Mining Health and Safety Council. We need to strengthen legal provisions to ensure that lives of mineworkers and persons affected by mining are protected. I can give you a long list of various interventions that are in that area.

The third area is issue and monitor implementation of directives because the department issue directives every time there is an accident in a mine. Therefore, we monitor whether those directives are implemented consistently. The question of monitoring and enforcement of compliance. Health and safety rule-based and people must comply if they want to work together and improve levels of fatalities.

Skills development was another intervention. A skilled worker is a safe worker because if you are not skilled you are going to panic and cause disasters and accidents in the mines. There is a focus programme of health and safety directed at women in mining. You will remember that in 1987 women were not allowed to work in the mines. Then after the 21 days that shook the Chamber, hon Chairperson, women were allowed to work in the mines. Today 72 000 mineworkers are female. So, there are programmes that are focused on health and safety for women in mining. That is a brief summary of the details you can get on all these aspects.

Ms T C MODISE: Chair, thank you to the Minister for responding in detail. It is encouraging to hear about the efforts by the department in trying to eliminate these mine occupational

related deaths. Yes, indeed, hon Minister, in the past when our fathers and uncles went to work in the mines we would ask ourselves whether they will come back. I still remember the incident that happened in 1995, if I am not mistaken, in Klerksdorp, where so many mineworkers died there. So, indeed it shows that the Minister and his department are hands-on.

There are small companies that repeatedly ignore the department’s directives and do not comply with health and safety standards. What are you doing with those companies, because they are threatening the lives of the working class? Thank you very much.


companies are treated the same. Our attitude towards them is the same when it comes to the issue of health and safety — big or small, old or emerging. Health and safety is something that we do not compromise, it doesn’t matter which company it is.
That is why if you categorise accidents and disasters in the mining industry they will have a particular part. Let me give you an example, old deep mines have prevalence of seismicity which goes with regular rocks falls. Therefore, the number of accidents there require a particular attention and support.

Where there is machinery is another area where accidents happen in the mining industry. So, we treat them the same.

If there is an accident caused by recklessness, the first action that we take in the industry as the department is to issue a section 54 which suspends operation until you correct the mistake. If you continue breaking the law we issue a section 47 where we take the license from the mining company and we take that decision very seriously and not anyhow.
Sometimes people think that we should do that to punish a manager. It can’t work that way; you take that decision of section 47 when it is really recklessness and people don’t care then, you issue a section 47. But if there is an accident which reflects instant recklessness, section 54 is sufficient to send a clear signal that listen, we are suspending operations for a certain period and therefore tighten up your health and safety. So, that is where we are, we take health and safety serious in all the mines, irrespective of size.

Mr M R BARA: Chairperson, to the Minister, despite the reduction in mine fatalities in 2022 there are still bodies of miners trapped underground at the Lily mine that have not been retrieved. What steps is the department taking to ensure that

necessary resources and expertise are made available to retrieve the bodies of these miners and provide closure to their families? Thank you, Minister.


three workers in Lily mine who are still underground is an issue that is used emotionally in the majority of cases. Let’s start from scratch. When there was a Coalbrook disaster and
437 workers died, it is not the state that took responsibility, it was the Electricity Supply Commission, Escom. When there was a Kinross disaster it was not the state that took responsibility, it was General Mining Corp, Genco. When there was the Vaal Reefs disaster, not in Klerksdorp but in Orkney, hon Modise, it was Anglo that took responsibility. The state is involved in the Lily mine incident, but our approach is that you can’t just throw state money into a disaster, we will have to invite investment into Lily mine and work with the company that will invest there to have that container out and continue mining. So, it is a private sector disaster and not a state disaster, and the state’s responsibility is to ensure that laws are enforced and we will do that. But for the state to take a shortcut and throw

resources in the recklessness of the private sector is a misnomer.

Mr S F DU TOIT: Chairperson, to the Minister, you were correct in saying that mine fatalities have gone down, and we are really thankful for that. According to a recent survey by the Minerals Council of South Africa the number of fatalities in South African mining industry declined by about 75% between 1995 and 2021. Over the same period, the number of injuries decreased by 66%. I want to quote two paragraphs from the Parliamentary Monitoring Group, PMG, because it is important, Minister, to note that the illegal mining that is currently taking place is costing the country and mining companies money and is endangering the lives of legal miners as we will know.

The Harmony Gold briefed Parliament in 2020 and indicated that illegal mining cost the state and mining companies approximately R11 billion in taxes and R7 billion in revenue and that the fight against illegal mining was becoming more difficult due to corruption. Harmony Gold had dealt with 1 163 cases of injured illegal miners and 641 cases of deceased illegal miners, and between 2012 and 2019 Harmony spent about R1,7 billion on security.

Now, Minister, what extra steps is your department taking to ensure that the lives of legal miners are being protected and their safety is guaranteed, and that the illegal mining activities that are currently going on are definitely stopped to such an extent that it will not cost the tax payer and mining houses more money, and will prevent fatalities of legal miners in the mining industry? Thank you, Minister.


to me the state must invest money to protect crime. In other words, illegal mining, which is a criminal activity by the way. It is not a mining activity but a criminal activity. It is given a number of names, in Zimbabwe they call it gold mafia and all those things. That is a network of criminal activities targeting mining. You cannot expect a department of the state to create safety for illegal miners ... [Interjections.]

Mr S F DU TOIT: Hon Chair, on a point of order. I think the Minister misheard me. I am asking what measures and steps are taken to prevent legal miners against the illegal miners ... [Interjections.]

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon du Toit, you must first raise your hand, then you get recognised and then you speak. Now, the point that you have just raised now, I don’t want you to repeat it, but you can if you want to ... [Interjections.]

Mr S F DU TOIT: Thank you, Chair. Am I recognised? Thank you, hon Chair. Let us follow the procedure.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: No, you are not recognised ... [Interjections.]

Mr S F DU TOIT: Hon Chair, on a point of order just for clarity ... [Interjections.]

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Please take you seat, hon du Toit.

Mr S F DU TOIT: Pardon?

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Please take your seat. Thank you very much. Hon members, I am just reminding you of standard practice and procedure that you do not stand up and speak but you raise your hand, get recognised and then say on what point

you are rising. And then we will look at that. Please don’t be tempted to use points of order to debate and articulate your point of view. So, hon du Toit, I am giving you a chance. On what point are you rising? Let us get an indication.

Mr S F DU TOIT: Thank you, hon Chair, I don’t have the Rules book with me but I just want to assist the Minister, I think he might have misheard me. I was alluding to the fact that illegal mining is endangering the lives of legal miners in the country. My question was what additional measures are his department putting in place to ensure the safety of legal miners in the country? I was, at no stage, insinuating or stating that government money must be used to ensure the safety of illegal miners or zama zamas. Maybe I should have started with zama zamas. So not at all do we want to use government money and taxpayers’ money to ensure the safety of zama zamas. I was focusing on legal miners and their safety.
Thank you, hon Chair.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon du Toit, that is not a point of order. You are just utilising that to express your point of view. Please, hon members, let us not do that. Minister?


this, hon Chairperson. Illegal mining is a criminal activity

... [Interjections.]

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon Minister, I guess what you are really doing is to address the House. Let us not have a situation where hon du Toit and yourself are engaging in a dialogue.


mining is a criminal activity and we must deal with it as such

— full stop. What we are focusing on is to improve the safety of mine workers. In improving the safety of mine workers the interventions I listed are targeted and directed at mine workers. That is why, for example, before we achieved the 49 fatalities in 2022 the lowest number was achieved in 2019 and was 51 fatalities. We are now at 49 and our objective is to achieve zero harm in mining. That is the objective of this department, and we have also accepted that we can’t do that on our own; we can only achieve that if we work with the employers and with the workers. We all co-operate including communities. When we are working together, fatalities in the industry will be reduced. Every fatality to us is a concern.

That is why anything from five fatalities in one accident is declared a disaster.

Ms S B LEHIHI: Chairperson, to the Minister, one of the reasons why South African mines are getting safer is also because of the decline in the number of workers employed directly by miners. Fewer and fewer people are working underground each day minimising the number of people that get exposed to harmful conditions.


Tona, ke eng seo o se dirileng go netefatsa gore meepo e bolokesegile le gore meepo e tswelela go thapa badiri ba le bantsi?


important in that you quote numbers, you don’t just say that employment is reduced in mining, unless you say numbers have dropped from x number to this number. I can emphasise that the reduction of fatalities is not a function of reduction of workers working in the mines. Actually, I can tell you that even during COVID the one sector that did not reduce its workforce was mining. In the latest labour statistics that

reduced, the marginal increase was in mining. We continue keeping an eye on that. So, we can’t answer a question that is not based on correct statistics. The statistics must be correct then we can respond to that question.

Question 17:


asking a question about the progress made with regard to Energy Action Plan that was announced by the President on 25 July 2022. It is a very important question despite the fact that it is directed at the wrong department. Yes. I am going to respond to it even if it is at a wrong department.
Therefore, hon Nhanha is crying at a wrong funeral because Energy Action Plan is focusing on dealing with load shedding, and the actual area of focus on load shedding is the optimal performance of energy generating power stations and that competence has always been with the Department of Public Enterprises, DPE. It is now with the Minister of Electricity. More important is that President Ramaphosa made this announcement. Firstly, from where we are seated, all that we are expected is to continue increasing the generation capacity of energy. And there is a big debate we are having on whether if we actually accelerate renewable energy programme, whether

we will be able to deal with load shedding. Our conclusion is that we need renewables for long-term sustainable supply of energy, but for load shedding, we need to focus on the energy availability factor power station by power station. That’s what we should do; secondly, we need to procure emergency power supply to supplement what is already there; and lastly, is to import energy from neighbouring countries. And we have agreed that we should focus the on the skills at Eskom. So, that is part of the programme and everybody is focusing on that. The reason that we are supporting the Minister of Electricity is that his area of focus is the correct one because he has gone to 14 power stations thus far, and in all of them paying attention to the energy availability factor, power station by power stations. It is the correct focus. But we must also look on other areas where the President announced a number of issues like rooftop solar panels in society, and that is a supplementary programme to deal with load shedding. Load shedding must be corrected and must be corrected urgently. It is not a matter of mobilizing for votes. It is a necessary intervention because it irritates the society and it costs the economy. That should be done whether it is about votes or not. It has nothing to do with mobilizing for votes. That’s what it is.

Mr M NHANHA: Chairperson, me, crying at a wrong funeral Minister ... the confusion that South Africans and I have is exactly explained by your response because for some reason, you want to shift responsibility to the new Minister of Electricity. Despite that, let me ask my follow-up question. Minister, despite the Energy Action Plan as announced by the President and the creation of yet another Minister, Minister of Electricity, whom you famously called a project manager, eight months later, very little progress in implementing the plan can pointed out. In fact, it is projected that 2023 is poised to be even worse than 2022 in terms of rolling blackouts, which have engulfed our country for the past 15 years. I will put it to Qwathi that the slow progress and push back in implementing the Energy Action Plan can be traced back to the Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy led by your good self because you are ideologically opposed to some elements of the plan. Will you please tell this House when do you anticipate the full implementation of the plan and stop quarrelling amongst ourselves whilst South Africans are at the receiving end of load shedding? Thank you.


unfortunately you are misrepresenting the DA because he is

using the report of Oosthuizen, which was a test of a book research to accuse all of us of all the misdemeanor. He must go and follow the action plan as implemented. I am not shifting any blame. Firstly, my party, the ANC Chairperson, said transfer Eskom to Mineral Resources and Energy, it has not happened. Now, I cannot be accused by association. Give me the task, let me execute it. Actually, even renewables which I am always accused of blocking, I have authorized more renewables in four years than my predecessors did in 11 years; secondly, and we have even removed the ceiling on embedded generation, which means there is deregulation of embedded generation. Therefore, people must use that opportunity to move on. There was one company that applied for a license to develop its own energy. That was Goldfields. When in 2021-22, mining declined production by 9,9%, but because Goldfields completed that project grew by 10%.

So, I don’t want hon Nhanha to make wild allegations that he has not researched. He must do research, come to the House and present scientific statements. Thank you.

Mr M NHANHA: I wish the Minister would have responded to my question.

Mr M J MAGWALA: Thank you Chairperson and greetings to the Minister, you’ll have to forgive us Minister because we are directed by this question that was asked by hon Nhanha. In our follow-up question as the EFF, it has been almost a year since the Energy Action Plan was announced, yet at present, the year 2023 is already said to be even worse than 2022 in terms of the rolling blackouts, with more jobs set to be lost in the coal sector with the corrupt deals made worse by President Ramaphosa to shut down power stations in favour of nonexistent just transmission of renewable energy. Can the Minister agree that the progress made is inadequate as stages of load shedding have not been reduced and our people are frustrated and inconvenienced by the rolling blackouts? Thank you.


agree with the EFF is that load shedding is unacceptable to anybody. It irritates society and it costs the economy.
Therefore, in whatever we do, we must improve the level of load shedding, reduce it, and ultimately eliminate it. I agree with that. What I am advising Members of Parliament – I say Members of Parliament to encompass members of the National Council of Provinces – is that don’t come to the House as public representatives to make wild statements that have no

basis in terms of information. It is a dangerous thing to do because society out there listens to us and they believe that we are the representatives of society, and we don’t make wild statements. Coal supply to the power stations is an issue, but there is no shortage of coal in this country. Let me give you an example, I had a discussion with the Minister of Electricity who I respect, work with, and talk to him regularly, that many of the power stations don’t use the cost plus mine that used to be there. As a result of that, you increase the risk of contamination of coal by trucking coal into the power station. Instead of using a cost plus mine next to the power station, you can use a conveyor belt which is more secured. Our view is that that is an issue which must be debated within Eskom and be corrected because coal supply and the quality of coal is more important, but if you truck it in and people contaminate it, that’s a risk that is external to the normal system. I am submitting that there is no shortage of coal. We must also avoid this thing of saying that coal is not a business. It is just mines to supply Eskom. Coal mining companies are businesses that do business by trading with coal with Eskom and exports. Therefore, it is a sector that is very important. Last year, when we were given money by developed economies, they gave money that was equal to R131 billion. In

that year, the whole turnover was R130 billion. It is a healthy sector. When we monitor performance of mining, we also monitor coal mining as a sector because we have to look into coal, platinum, etc. It is a healthy sector. We must protect it and not make it a scapegoat for problems. Coal is available and the quality of coal is good but it must be managed appropriately.

Mr I NTSUBE: Chairperson, I think the Minister also indicated this that the initial question shouldn’t be directed to the department, and I thought that as a presiding officer, you will rule it out because it is not a question for this department. Since I see the Minister has an appetite to answer our questions, Chair, I just wanted to check in relation to the energy availability that maybe the Minister can take the nation in confidence with continuous developments within the two departments, both the Electricity and Energy, as to may be when can we expect the end of load shedding? Thank you very much.


please protect a person from hon Labuschagne. I am appealing to you.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Yes. Hon members, the stance we take on this matter is that there will be a little bit of here and there. And as long as you don’t drown the speakers, and you don’t seriously disturb the speaker. In the main, we want to listen to responses, for instance, by the Minister to the House. So, hon Labuschagne, please take it easy. Let’s ensure that the Minister is able to do what he has come here to do.
Hon Labuschagne.

Ms C LABUSCHAGNE: Hon Chair, I rise on Rule 67(c), and I rise on a point of clarity.


Ms C LABUSCHAGNE: On Rule 67(c). The Rule: At the discretion of the presiding officer, on a point of clarity to request permission to put the question to the Minister.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: I guess what we can do is to ask the Minister ... Order, hon members. I guess what I may have to do is to ask the Minister if he is prepared to take a question? Minister!


questions. That’s what I am busy with. Now, if there are new questions that will be a problem because I am here to answer questions. Yes.

Mr K MOTSAMAI: On a point of order, Chair.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Minister, please proceed.


that question. I am answering questions.

Mr K MOTSAMAI: On a point of order, Chair.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon Motsamai, on what point are you rising?

Mr K MOTSAMAI: Chair, I just want to say ...

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: There is no point like that.

Mr K MOTSAMAI: Chair, I just want to say the Minister must be a crybaby. Minister mustn’t be a crybaby ...

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Minister, please proceed.


is that the Energy Action Plan is being implemented. Leading that effort is the Minister of Electricity. There is no contestation on that. So, there is no fight between Minister of Energy and Minister of Electricity on that issue. He is leading that exercise, and we are supporting him. Anybody who writes stories that we are having a big fight, is imagining that fight. It does not exist [Ayikho]. The reality of the matter is that we want load shedding to be reduced and ultimately eradicated. That’s all we want. We are all committed to that. All of us. I haven’t heard any member of the Cabinet who is resisting that. So, there is no such an issue.

Mr N M HADEBE: Hon Chairperson, hon Minister ...

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon Hadebe, there seems to be some point that hon Labuschagne want to raise. Hon Labuschagne!

Ms C LABUSCHAGNE: Chair, I still rise on Rule 67(c), on a point of clarity. I raised this with you Chairperson, and you asked the Minister as to whether he would like to take a question. I heard that he said he would. Can I ask him the question, please?

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: No, you can’t ask a question, hon Labuschagne. Thank you very much. I am not allowing that. Hon Hadebe, please proceed!

Mr N M HADEBE: Hon Chairperson, hon Minister, the expedition of finalizing the Electricity Regulation Amendment Bill was one of the priorities listed by the President in his Energy Action Plan. However, considering that the Bill still remains with the state law advisors, please provide an update on the status of the Bill as without the Electricity Regulation Amendment Bill on the statute book, most of the proposed energy sector reforms cannot be implemented? Thank you, hon Chairperson.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon Hadebe, please repeat your question. Speak a bit slower and speak to the mic.

Mr N M HADEBE: Hon Minister, the expedition of finalizing the Electricity Regulation Amendment Bill was one of the priorities listed by the President in his Energy Action Plan. Considering that the Bill still remains with the state law advisors, please provide an update on the status of the Bill as without the Electricity Regulation Amendment Bill on the statute book, most of the proposed energy sector reforms cannot be implemented? Thank you, Chairperson.


The Bill has gone through the Cabinet and we have referred it to the National Assembly. If the National Assembly takes it to the state law advisors, it is the competence of the National Assembly to do so. It is out of our control. We have taken it to Cabinet and it was approved. It was sent to the National Assembly. Once they are done with it, it will come here. Thank you very much.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon Badenhorst, you seem to be trapped somewhere.

Mr F J BADENHORST: I am trapped, Chairperson. I am trapped on Rule 68(1)(a).

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: So, what point are you rising on?

Mr F J BADENHORST: It’s a point of order, Chair.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Point of order. Let’s hear the point of order.

Mr F J BADENHORST: Yes, Chair. My point of order is exactly what has happened now. It is the reason why this House has to start again with physical meetings and stop the online hybrid meetings because it delays procedures in this House. Nobody can hear what is being said. I am sitting here saying to myself, what is that hon member asking online because the sound is hollow, the base wrong. Nobody can hear anything.
Please Chair, can we come back in this House and do our job in person, please?

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon members, i guess ... Hon members, what we should do is to note that point and will make a pronouncement on it later. But I am sure that the point that hon Badenhorst is making is fairly clear, but we do need to make a ruling on it. So, we will do that later.

Question 32:


mineral beneficiary is a very important objective for South Africa. But it is contested by other countries on the basis of the price of electricity. If you want to run a point of a smelter for example, it’s an intensive energy consumer. And if your price of electricity, comparatively speaking is higher, you are actually losing the competitive advantage in that area.

That’s why my submission is yes, there are some areas where we have done progress, but the progress is slower than it should be because our price of electricity is higher than normal and therefore it’s one area that we should pay attention to. When you look into loadsheding and other issues, you must also look into the price of electricity. Let me give you an example, when the tariff is increased by 18,65%, actually it talks to the generator, it doesn’t talk to the end consumer and the end consumer will compare prices if, to run a smelter is easier to send bulk minerals to Asia. And you pay a penalty for that.
Employers pay the penalty and still export bulk commodity to other countries. So it’s an issue that we need to pay

attention to. It is very important because when we export bulk minerals, we are exporting jobs. Thank you.

Ms L C BEBEE: Thank you very much, Chairperson, and thank you very much Minister for the detailed response to the question. As we know that there are very good achievements in the mineral beneficiary programme, even though there are some challenges here and there. It is very important to address the challenges that have already been identified. Is there a timeframe on finalizing the master plan that will help in addressing these challenges? And does the Minister think that what is called the minerals of the future that is prevalent in our country will help us more in beneficiation process? Thank you, Chairperson.


future are minerals that are needed to move towards green economy. They will include your platinum group metal, PGM, they will include your vanadium and they will include copper. All those minerals that are important for moving to green economy are what we call minerals of the future. We are endowed with them here, but they will be more contributing when we begin to increase the battery manufacturing industry,

for example. When we do that, they will be more used and that beneficiation will add more value in that sector. And therefore, we are quite keen to ensure that we protect those minerals and not sell them to people who are knocking every day to us wanting to buy them raw. We resist that with everything we have because we are depending on them for the future.

As there is a big fight on actual reducing consumption of coal. There ... [Inaudible.] ... increase in consumption of other minerals.

That’s why today when people say mining has declined, we argue convincingly that it is not. All that has happened is to shift mining from being... It is equated to gold mining. It is the entirety of the mining industry that constitute the mine and therefore, growth in the mining industry and beneficiation will depend on us processing those minerals of the future into products that we can use. Thank you.

Mr S F DU TOIT: Hon Chair, through you to the Minister. I’m referring to this initial question that was posed. Minister,

since the Constitution is clear in its preamble that it’s there to and I quote:

Improve the quality of all citizens and free the potential of each person.

How mineral beneficiation benefited minority groups in South Africa. Not specifically, and only Africans in particular, but particularly brown, white, Indian South Africans. And what measures are in place to ensure that these individuals are not left behind, but that the life of all South Africans are improved through mineral beneficiation? Thank you.


life is not addressed only through one aspect, it is address through the value chain, which start from geology to mining, metallurgical, and then to beneficiation. That value chain must improve the lives of our people. That’s what we are focusing on.

That’s why it is important today as a person who never had a blasting certificate, not by choice, by law. Because I was not a scheduled person. Today, I can boast that over 75% of miners

are people who were not allowed to have a blasting certificate before. And the fact that every major mining company is having not less than 50% of management structure being black, a progress that we are actually ticking.

The fact that three of the major mining companies, - I’m not of the emerging companies, I’m talking of big mining companies are actually having female chief executive officer, CEOs, is progress we are making. So it is not benefiting a minority.
Mining benefits everybody. When it is under pressure, it is under pressure for everybody. Kumba Iron Ore is managed by a female CEO, Exxaro Resources Limited is managed by female CEO, Anglo American Platinum is managed by a female CEO, and management structures there are not for minorities. They are being open to all the people of South Africa and they manage them. Thank you.

Mr F J BADENHORST: Hon Chair, thank you for the opportunity and good afternoon, Minister?


Mr F J BADENHORST: So ... [Inaudible.] ... it’s quarter to six. You’re saying good morning. Is there something missing here? Anyway, let’s work towards this, Minister. Investment in mining beneficiation relies on the steady supply of power.
With the ongoing electricity crisis, and which is brought about by the hollowing out of Eskom corruption. Let me say this again carefully because I’m going to interrupt myself. Eskom is not working because of corruption, Eskom is not working because there is lack of... [Interjections.] ...

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon Badenhorst, please stop what you are doing. Let us avoid having a dialogue. If you ask a question, ask it through the Presiding Officer. We are just running a meeting, and that is a normal way to run a meeting, hon Badenhorst. When you engage in a meeting, you ask questions and so forth. It does not take place between two people. It is about the meeting. That is very important. So let us try to avoid a situation where we give the impression of having a dialogue with the Minister. Please proceed.

Mr F J BADENHORST: Hon Chair, I don’t agree with your ruling, I think it’s a slippery slope, we are going down now. I’m a

privileged member of this House and I have two minutes to pose a question, and I’m leading up to my question.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: It is your right to do so.

Mr F J BADENHORST: I’ll start again hon Chair because I have now lost the impetus of my question. So if you don’t mind me starting again. Minister, investment in mining beneficiation relies on a steady supply of power. With the ongoing electricity crisis brought about by the hollowing out of Eskom, and it’s hollowing out not because of a lack of interest in the private sector. As you should know, Minister, as you have been a key player in failing to generate private interest in the energy sector, - Remember your suggestion of Eskom 2,0 in November last year. And that’s a fact. Instead of asking and pushing for the private sector to get involved.
Minister, my question to you is, what specific interventions have been made to protect the mining value chain and jobs in the sector from the blackout crisis?


you are a Minister, by nature, you are an object of abuse. It’s normal. The reality of the matter is; Eskom has got a

number of things that didn’t work well. Let me start from the fact that in 1996-98, government was warned that the electricity surplus was going to be exhausted by 2007. That was done officially. And the state at the time took a decision that they will open electric generation to the private sector. And didn’t get into the building programme immediately, it delayed it. By 2004, they started the building programme of Medupi, Kusile and Ingula power plants. Because it was rushed late in the day, a number of mistakes were committed. I want you to start from there before you talk about corruption.
Corruption will be a factor. But it is not the sole factor because there was that lay start of the building programme. We ran into problems.

Secondly, the fact that I’m delaying private sector from getting into the sector... Go and read Bid Window 5 and check how many megawatts are in that bid window. Go to Bid Window 6 and read how many megawatts in that bid window. Let me give you an example, which has nothing to do with delaying. Four thousand two hundred megawatts were approved, but only 1000 went in because the grid capacity could not absorb 3,200 megawatts of private sector megawatts.

So, if I am an obstacle in that way, then I will accept it. But the reality of the matter is that we approved 4200, only 1000 got into the grid, 3200 from wind farms couldn’t get into the grid capacity. The explanation is and accept it, that if many of these bids are in the Northern Cape, the capacity there is limited. If it is in the coastal provinces where wind is which Western Cape and Eastern Cape, it will be slow because the grid is not strong there. Because originally, energy was in Mpumalanga and in the central provinces. And therefore, when we issue Bid Window 7, which we are not blocking ... [Interjections.] ... Okay. We are going to make it region-specific. So that we don’t allow people to bid and succeed and not be having access to the grid. That is, it.
Those are the plans that we are having.

Bid Window 7 is on the way. We will actually authorize 5000 megawatts in that bid window. And already we are talking about Bid Window 8, which is another 5000 megawatts. So, if that is blocking private sector, then I must accept that. The reality is that renewable energy lobbyists keep misleading society by explaining that if you approve a renewable energy project today, there will be energy on the grid on Saturday. It doesn’t work that way. They go through the processes; they get

financial clause. They build the facility. And only when they build the facility do they generate energy that goes to the grid. So, we must not mislead society in the debate about energy. Thank you.


Mr M NHANHA: Chairperson!

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: On what point are you rising Nhanha?

Mr M NHANHA: I’m rising on the point of order.


Mr M NHANHA: I’m rising on a point of order. This is in relation to your ruling ... [Interjections.] ...

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: I couldn’t hear what you are saying. On what point are you rising?

Mr M NHANHA: This relates to your ruling as it relates to hon Badernhorst. Earlier on when we were dealing with Question 17
... [Interjections.] ...

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Is it a point of order, a point of privilege? On what point are you rising?

Mr M NHANHA: I’m rising on a point of order, Chairperson.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: What is your point of order?

Mr M NHANHA: I’m rising on a point of order based on the ruling that you have just made with regards to hon Badenhorst. That he mustn’t speak directly to the Minister. He must avoid a dialogue. I’m saying Chairperson, in Question 17, hon Ntsube’s opening remarks were directed straight to the Minister and he then went back to address you and you did not rule him out of order or you did not say what you said to hon Badenhorst.

Chairperson, my request to you, my humblest plea is to treat us evenly. Otherwise, this is what leads to chaos in the House as you would know. You have got history with this kind of

treatment in the House. That is my plea with you, Chairperson. Thank you.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Thank you very much, hon Nhanha. But that is not a point of order really. Hon members, we would like to proceed.

Ms S A Luthuli: Chairperson, I’m still here.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Oh sorry, hon Luthuli and please proceed.


Nk S A LUTHULI: Mphathiswa Womnyango sicela ukukwazi ukuthi mingaki imiphakathi ehlomulile kwezokumbiwa phansi ikakhulukazi leyo iyayincishwe amathuba ngokomlando naleyo miphakathi ewumakhelwane ...


... to the mining companies that you have licenced through your department?


Luthuli would require a written answer to get those details and break downs. But the point that I can make is that we don’t break benefits to society in terms of the sectors of the value chain. If, for example, you must hand over a school in Idutywa, and social labour plan by Sibanye which is a huge high school, we count that and we tick it off. Okay. When you must hand over a high school and a primary school in Rustenburg built by Royal Bafokeng Holdings, we tick that off. And it goes on and on like that. Or a clinic wherever it could be, Mpumalanga in Barberton, or in Middleburg, we tick all of them off as benefits to society.

And our approach to that is that the social labour plan must not build small projects like a community hall and small things like that. They must pull resources together and build impactful projects to society. But if you want the break down per sector beneficiation then you will have to wait for a written reply.

But the reality of the matter is that, as I said before, and I’m repeating this today so that you must note it.
Beneficiation is not as big as we talk about it. And one of

the major factors to it is the competitive disadvantage when it comes to energy, price and energy availability.

So, beneficiation without energy availability is not going to be accelerated. But other aspect of mining gets accelerated. We do geology works, we do exploration and we find the quality of minerals and the quantity, we mine them. We separate mineral from rocks. But beneficiation which is an add on, is a very energy intensive user. So, if we must give you that detail, we will come back to you. Thank you.

Question 3:


that is in respect of the expansion of Tendele Mine in Kwantakanyoni, in KwaZulu-Natal. The department has not adapted the environmental impact assessment process in relation with the application in terms of section 102 of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, MPRD, post the record judgment against granting of mining right in Tendele Mining Company.

The National Environmental Management Act, as amended, does have sufficient provisions to deal with environmental impact

assessment of any activity including mining. The judgment does not order the Minister to adapt the environmental impact and assessment process, but to reconsider the decision subsequent to any information that may be subject to him the Tendele Mine as directed by the relevant court order. So, it is not an adjustment of an environmental assessment part to reconsider the decision of the Minister.

Mr N M HADEBE: Thank you, hon Chairperson. Hon Minister, I would wish to know what steps has the department taken to compel mining companies to make reparation for environmental damage done on the land surrounding mining communities in ways that prove beneficial to the affected communities? Thank you, Chairperson.

THE CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon Radebe, can I ask you once again to please repeat your question and try to avoid the echo as much as possible. Speak slower, bit louder and speak to the mic.

Mr N M HADEBE: Hon Chairperson and hon Minister, what steps has the department taken to compel mining companies to make reparation for environmental damage done on the land

surrounding mining communities in ways that prove beneficial to the affected communities? Thank you, Chairperson.


Radebe doesn’t want us to debate the Tendele case here. Let me tell you why. If you go into details you are going to discover that the settlement of that case was accepted by the minority in that community. There was a number of families that rejected it. Therefore, that’s where the case is. It is not us who say and determine the level of compensation that goes to the communities. They discuss. Companies agree with those communities and pay reparation to them. The problem is that if out of 200 people - I am just throwing a number - 10 do not accept it, actually that case drags on and on. We can’t force the 10 to accept the reparation. Thank you.

Mr D R RYDER: Thank you very much, Chair. To the Minister, noting to our event yesterday I hope you are not intimidated by the large crowd here today. Minister, in August 2022, communities across the country that live close to mines came here in Parliament and protested at the gate airing their grievances about what they saw as unethical conduct from the mining companies on the expansion plans. These strange

relationships have been a running theme in the mining communities for quite sometimes yet that play little role when it comes to assessing the licenses. It seems that relationships with key departments, officials and government officials are the main deciders in license considerations.
Minister, what role has the department played to enable peaceful coexistence and a mutual beneficial relationship between mines and the communities they are operating, and what amendments are being made to the licensing process to ensure that these relationships continue along on the best footing that they can? Thank you.


what I cannot do is to respond to an exercise of communities coming to Parliament, and Parliament receiving a memorandum. That is the responsibility of Parliament which is a total different arm of government. When they do that we don’t interfere with them.

In the charter there is something called social and labour plan. Social and labour plan is nothing more than a social license that a mining company pay to those communities. If the social and labour plan is not effective, we are prepared to

listen. When communities come to us we deal with it. You don’t need to amend it, but you just need to tighten it. The social and labour plan do work. I can tell you, hon Ryder. On Friday,
I was handing over a school in Idutywa and it is not a mining

area, but it is a labour serving area. I can tell you that I have been to all over. I have been to Kuruman handing over a schools. I have been to everywhere. It is beginning to happen and it is beginning to happen aggressively. Members of Parliament must be part of monitoring the social process so that we can work together in making it more effective. That would be my appeal.


NK S A LUTHULI: Angibonge sihlalo, ngqongqoshe womnyango yiziphi izinhlelo ezikhona nozisebenzisayo ...


... to do environmental impact assessment ...


... ukwenza ukuhlolwa komthelela kwezemvelo okwazi ...


 ... to hold these mining companies accountable for the negative impacts caused by mining? Thank you.


that no mining company get a mining license if it does not have an environmental impact assessment certificate from the Ministry of Environment. No mine gets a certificate if it does not have water license certificate from the Ministry of Water and Sanitation. At the point of issuing a license a mining company must comply with all those issue, and then we give them a license.


NK W NGWENYA: Mangibonge Sihlalo ...


... and thank you, hon Minister for your response. Hon Minister, I want to check, has the court found anything wrong with the assessment process and has the department implemented the directives of the court in this matter?


Ngiyabonga Sihlalo.



earlier, the judgment didn’t order our Ministry to adapt the environmental impact assessment processes. It did not! The court didn’t give us that judgment. All it said is that we should reconsider the decision depending on the new information we receive. That is the process that followed, the environmental assessment. That’s why we actually ... I am an accountant in the background and you may not know this. I have never allowed a transaction to be handled by one person from the beginning to the end. That’s why when we issue a mining license the Environmental Minister must issue an environmental assessment impact and the Water department must issue a water license. Together are approved and then we give a license.
That means our intervention is from the external ministries to ensure that the mining license is a reputable piece of paper.

Question 18:

Mr M DANGOR: ... reads whether the High Court judgment on 1 September 2022 ...

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: ... Makhanda High Court judgment


Mr M DANGOR: ... a decision by his department. I don’t know if the Minister owns the department. He said by ‘his department’ and not just the department. It is the wording, Chairperson, that we need to be very careful of. What happens if he’s not a transgender person? It is a he or she? How are they going to work in that department? Thank you, Chairperson.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: You are complicating the situation, hon Dangor. [Laughter.] Thank you very much. The question is as it is. I am sure members have the Question Paper in front of them. We will ask the Minister to respond.


High Court has granted Shell, Impact Africa, the Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy leave to appeal. The court granted us that. That was against the judgment on 1 September 2022 and accordingly, the appeal suspends the operation and the execution of the decision. We have been granted the right to appeal and we are going to exercise it.

Mr M NHANHA: Thank you, Chairperson, for the longest time I was trying to anticipate the Minister’s response that he will say the matter is sub judice. I suppose his answer is another

way of saying the matter is sub judice. Having said that, Minister, it is really sad that the communities that elected you into office are dragged through the courts. Amongst the findings by the court is that there was inadequate consultation. Secondly, Shell failed to present concrete explanation to show how the project will improve socioeconomic conditions of all the affected communities.

Instead of respecting the court findings, your Ministry has gone further in its fishing expedition by appealing a crystal clear judgement at the expense of already hard hit tax payers. Will you commit to this House that you will stop the court action, implement the Makhanda High Court decision, remember who you serve and respect the will of the people of the Wild Coast. Thank you.


disagreement between myself and the hon Nhanha. The disagreement is simple - the Eastern Cape is one of the poorest provinces and it needs development. And therefore, we must actually stretch the cost to the limit to open up for development. When they give us the right to appeal, we must exercise it so that development of oil and gas exploration

must continue in the Eastern Cape so that that province can grow and develop like other provinces.

Hon Nhanha made an assumption that we are not talking to anybody, we are just ... [Inaudible.] I can tell you that there is difference between court cases which they are represented by NGOs - foreign money funded and mainly foreign based, which are antidevelopment. Our moving around to meet all the seven kingdoms in the Eastern Cape, explaining the intention that has happened. I have gone to all seven kingdoms in the Eastern Cape, we have explained the intention and actually, this appeal will have stronger momentum, having gone to all the seven kingdoms in the area.

Mr S F DU TOIT: Thank you, hon Chair. Through you, hon Chair to the hon Minister. Hon Minister, with the department failing to do its mandate to play an effective oversight role and effectively communicating with the communities where we are at this moment. You were correct in citing that you have leave to appeal. You confirmed that you will definitely exercise that right. Minister, I want to know - since your department failed to exercise its mandate, and obviously this is costing taxpayers’ money because you definitely are not using your own

money to fight this battle - what measures will be taken individuals in your department who failed to communicate with the community because it’s our money that is being used to fight this fight?

You stated now that you will definitely ensure that exploration does go ahead because you want economic growth in that specific area. We are not contesting the fact that we are sitting with the unemployment disaster in the country at this stage. Minister, what financial benefit will be there for government if this issue push through and will that weigh more heavy than the environmental fact that this exploration might have in that specific area?


from the angle of failure to do oversight. Gas and oil are contested terrain in South Africa. And I always describe it as laws that have given environmentalists veto power of development. That’s my conclusion, and it’s a mistake that is going to cost the department in the long term - dearly. The Constitution make an allowance to do development but it is forcing us to be sensitive to the environmental conditions.
But what happens when courts are used to stop development. If

we stop development, there will be nothing to protect – we will not protect any environment because people are going to starve. And it is happening now.

My submission to this House is that we should work together to ensure that development is not stopped. What happened to people who committed mistakes? I am a student of a man called Jack Wells. It is not Jack Wells ... [Inaudible.] ... there is one chapter there that talks about blowing the rooftops. He is teaching us that people who commit mistakes in the process of execution are not to be punished by expelling them. I got convicted that actually in that chapter, you will get this issue where you say to Jack, “Blow more rooftops,” - which is encouraging to take action, get involved and try to achieve results. Because this thing of thinking that the solution to mistakes that happen in the process of execution to destroy people and throw them all over is a misnomer. Give people a chance to recover, and give the people a chance to continue executing the task given to them. I am a believer of that. And therefore, I am not punishing people for this. We are going to court to appeal the judgment. But once we appeal this judgment, if it is given in favour of us, we will continue doing this seismic survey exploration and exploitation.

I am not converted to the believe that we should not gas and oil ... [Inaudible.] ... - I am not converted to that. Those who tell us that Europe, the EU, does use gas and oil for their own development and the maintenance of that development, but come and tell us not to touch it. They told Uganda not to touch their oil but they want that oil to go to Europe. I am not convinced ... [Inaudible.] ... We will continue developing our countries and then can have an argument and a debate in a developed economy.

Mr M J MAGWALA: Thank you, Chairperson. I don’t know Minister if maybe you partially covered the question that I am going to ask. But let me do this. Following Makhanda High Court judgment, which measures has the Minister put in place to ensure that in future enough consultations are held with different stakeholders and that the pursue for profit never overtakes the rights of communities.


exploits mineral, gas or oil. Obviously, there would be obliteration of surplus value there. Therefore, you can’t counterpose the obliteration of surplus value to people and say that because there is profit, therefore it is antipeople.

You need that surplus value to actually execute programmes that benefit society. Even on generating that surplus value, you are not going to have a community benefiting from anything. Communities benefit because you exploit, you develop and you grow the economy because you have surplus value. You have the scope and space to support society. Therefore, if you don’t have that you have other things - capital is dirty, profits are dirty.

Actually, you are going to come ... [Inaudible.] ... you know there was a case in Kenya, bra yami [my brother], where people starved themselves to death and hoped that they will go to heaven. We can’t get into that. We are not going to starve ourselves to death because that’s an entry point to heaven – no, it can’t be. We must allow ... When I talk to people wherever I go, I encourage black people to participate in the economy and generate black capitalists. And those black capitalists must make money and after making money, they must employ more other people – do you get my point? They must employ more other people. That is the economy – that is how it works. Yes, thank you. [Interjections.] There you are. But you can’t counterpose that the rating profit is antipeople – it is

wrong concept. Let’s have a discussion on that, outside of here.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Okay, thank you very much. I making you aware that many of us who are interested in surplus, you have to use capital for development and so on and so forth - I am sure. This is the kind of discussion that can take place well beyond the confines of this Chamber. Thank you very much. Hon Modise?

Ms T C MODISE: Thank you very much, Chairperson. Let me train the Minister of business and free education. Hon Minister, does the department or government generally have any difficulties in implementing this or any other court decision? Thank you very much.


has no problem in implementing court judgments. That is the least of our problems. But if a judgment is against the interests that represent, we appeal it. It is the right we have. And we exercise that right fully – every time we think that here there is a contravention of our own right, but we don’t have a problem yokuthi [of saying] we have a problem of

implementing court judgment - we don’t have that problem. It is not problematic to the department.

Question 33:


gas and oil in our neighbouring countries - it is here talking to Namibia. A company that discovered that oil in Namibia made three discoveries. They are currently drilling 10 wells of oil but that oil stretches into our water. If we touch that oil in South Africa, I am telling you that we will end up in the Western Cape High Court. I know that it happens all the time and we will appeal it but it will happen that way.

So, the discovery of that oil in Namibia is encouraging us. To appreciate the fact that there is a well that we are not exploring in South Africa. We are willing to continue fighting until the right to exploit that wealth is fulfilled and that is it. Whether it is gas in Mozambique, you must appreciate that there should be gas in the east coast of South Africa.

Actually, what is interesting to me is that, companies that make these discoveries are companies that we chased away here. We chased away Shell and Total, they go to Namibia and make

three discoveries of oil. To us they must be put through various court cases. The Department of Mineral Resources and Energy was doing exploration in the east coast of KwaZulu- Natal, was taken to court 47 times. They left us, went to Côte d'Ivoire and made huge discoveries of oil there. That shows that there is something that needs to be attended in our own policy rather than complaining about it. We must attend to that and we are raising it everywhere whenever we have a chance to.

Ms T C MODISE: Thank you very much hon Minister for the elaborate response to the question. What would the discovery of gas and oil in our coast mean to the economy of our country? What does the Minister think about the...

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon Mkiva, please stop. Hon Mkiva, you are not audible. We will proceed with hon Modise.

Ms T C MODISE: Thank you, very much hon Chair. What would the discovery of gas and oil in our coast mean to the economy of our country? What does the Minister think about the litigation environment created by the environmentalist group against the exploration in South Africa?




...ndiyabona ukuba uGcwanini uyatshiseka phaya, ufuna ukuwubuza ngokwakhe lo mbuzo...


 ...but we cannot come through. You know, I am convinced that gas and oil are actually important to us. They will be a catalyst to the economic development to us, in South Africa. For example the discovery of the 3,7 trillion cubic feet, TCF of gas by Total off the Mossel Bay. It is going to make a huge difference not only in the south coast but in the entire country. If we can discover more, it means that it will change the nature of the economy. I am convinced that it is gas that can change the Eastern Cape into a gas hub.

You know, we have discovered lithium in the Free State. We have not decided what to do with that lithium. It is there and that lithium can make big difference because it used to be the Free State gold fields. Now, it is the home for big discovery

of lithium. Oil and gas will change the economy of the country.

Mr N M HADEBE: Hon Chairperson, the Minister might have partly covered the question that I was going to ask. My question is, in the face of severe load shedding the National Energy Regulator of South Africa, Nersa has started approving gas projects to help alleviate the pressure on the economy.
Considering the discovery of gas in Namibia and Mozambique, hon Minister please advise that your department will draw on the expertise of the Namibian and Mozambican counterparts on key challenges faced in Richards Bay. Thank you, hon Chair.


a different case. The 3000 megawatts of gas power in Richards Bay is a different case which was taken to court, won and environmentalists have appealed it. We are hoping to build another 3000 megawatts in the south eastern coast of South Africa and we know that it is going to be challenged. So, the discovery of gas and oil in our continent is going to change our lives, including Shell gas, by the way, in the Karoo. We have taken 40 bottles of gas from Shell gas to another country to verify if it is economical. The results are positive.

We have gas all over us but we must just have the right to exploit it and change the economy of this country. I am convinced about it. The reason I am saying the Richards Bay is a different case is that with the pipeline that connects Mozambique and Mpumalanga, that pipeline is 80% owned by the South African and Mozambican governments and 20% by Sasol. So, that is the facility we are using and we can use it to change the economy. Thank you.


Nk S A LUTHULI: Ngibonge Sihlalo, ngiyabona uNgqongqoshe ubezama ukungivalela efuna ukuthi lo mbuzo ungezi kuyena kwangena ngepayipi elingalungile kwaya komunye uNgqongqoshe. Kodwa hhayi, ngikhona manje.


Will the discovery of natural gas in Namibia and Mozambique create an opportunities to boost South Africa’s economy and social development in the long term? If so, please provide details in this regard as it relates to youth. Thank you.


if we import it. It does not replace the need to discover our

own. We will continue to import gas from Mozambique and we are going to import oil from Namibia. Actually, what we have done in the last years is to build intra-Africa Trade, whether it is with Nigeria, Angola or other countries in the continent.
We do that because we know that it is more sustainable to work with the continent than to import all these products from very far at a huge cost. So, we are working on that. Namibia will help us and Mozambique is also helping us. If you want to repurpose the power stations that you want to decommission into gas power stations, it will help us. Thank you.

Ms C LABUSHAGNE: Hon Minister, I would like to know whether the South African has entered into commodity forward purchase agreements with Namibia and Mozambique over the yet to be extracted gas resources? If so, what are the terms and conditions of those agreements? Minister, I would really like to clarify now that it is at the end of the day because I did not get the opportunity earlier. I would like to know if it is the colour green that I am wearing or the tiger in you that made you assume that you need protection from me. [Laughter.]


soft protection from you. Sometimes, when we talk here, you

talk there. That is soft protection and I do not need physical protection. You know, we have got no applicable agreement yet. When there was a state visit by Namibia, one of the commitments I personally made was that we will go to Namibia and have a discussion with my counterparts in Namibia. So, that one, put it aside. In Mozambique, there’s quite a number of agreements into including the pipeline I mentioned before, the L&G that has been developed in Maputo. It gives us access to the gas in Mozambique. So, that access is necessary and we need it because at this point in time we cannot exploit ours but when we import it there are no protests but when we explore ours protests happen. So, I am quite comfortable that as the region we should develop if we are interconnected. That is very important and let me leave it at that. Yes, in Mozambique we are trading there. We have not yet started with Namibia but we are quite keen to trade them. If you ask me there will be nothing stopping us from developing refinery in Port Nolloth to cater for both oil discoveries in Namibia and in South Africa. But that is a dream. The dream like Eskom do.

The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Thank you very much Minister. Hon members, having done the work that we did and completed our business, let me start off by thanking the Minister of Mineral

Resources and Energy for availing himself to answer the questions. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank again all the other Ministers who were here, MECs who may be in virtual platforms, all Special and Permanent Delegates for availing themselves for this sitting. Having done so, hon members, let me indicate that there been no other business, the House is adjourned. Thank you very much.

The Council adjourned at 18:39.




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