Hansard: NA: Unrevised hansard

House: National Assembly

Date of Meeting: 06 Sep 2023


No summary available.


Watch here: Plenary 

The House met at 15:03.



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


The SPEAKER: Order! Order, hon members! Hon Zwane, are you here? Hon Zwane? Yes, Chief Whip?


The CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY PARTY: Hon Speaker, I am not hon Zwane; my name is Pemmy Majodina, the Chief Whip. Hon Zwane was here yesterday knowing very well that we are supposed to be here in this House today for the reprimand. I cannot account on his whereabouts when he is not here in the House. I suggest that the Speaker finds accordingly and act accordingly with all powers vested in you. Thank you.



The SPEAKER: Thank you very much, Chief Whip. Order, hon members! Hon members ... [Interjections.] ... he can’t be on

the virtual platform; he knows he should be here. Hon members, just to remind all of us that hon Zwane should have presented himself to the National Assembly in May, if I am not making a mistake. Hon Zwane decided to stay away from Parliament without an apology and without informing the Chief Whip of the Majority Party. Today should have offered us an opportunity to reprimand hon Zwane on the basis of a recommendation which came from the Committee on Ethics. Now he is not here.



I am deeply disappointed because hon Zwane was here yesterday, I saw him, he was seating next to the hon member who is dressed in yellow right next to the door there. At some point when I was watching him, because I wanted to remind him that today he is supposed to present himself here, at some point he left the House and came back again. Today he is not here.

So, hon members, I just thought that I should provide that kind of clarity to all of you because sometimes when decisions are made people take it that you are being personal or being on a witch hunt. It is not a witch hunt, and it will not be personal, the Speaker will then apply her mind assisted by the legal team of Parliament on what the appropriate penalties will be for hon Zwane.

I thank you, hon members for your time. I am sorry that this had to happen. I am deeply disappointed by hon Zwane. This is disrespect to the House. Thank you, hon members.


Now we proceed to the business of today’s Order Paper which is questions addressed to Ministers in Cluster 2: Social Services.





Question 411:


The MINISTER OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: Hon Chairperson, it is good to be back in the House today. As we are all aware, the early childhood development, ECD function was moved to Basic Education. However, that does not remove us from some responsibilities that have to be done by our department.

Therefore, in answering the question: Prior to the handover of the ECD funds into the Department of Basic Education, my department developed an ECD upscaling and funding strategy that is inclusive of the needs of children with special needs. This has been part of the handover package to the Department of Basic Education for their consideration.

The Department of Basic Education also developed the National Curriculum Framework for children from birth to four and ensured that it has a strong inclusivity focus. More recently, the Department of Basic Education has been developing guidelines to strengthen the implementation of the National Curriculum Framework for children from birth to four. These guidelines include on how to enable inclusive approaches to ECD programmes. To further support ECD practitioners with an implementation of National Curriculum Framework, NCF, the Department of Basic Education is developing daily activity plans with integrated learning and teaching support materials. This also includes a focus on ensuring an inclusive resource kit.



The Department of Basic Education, DBE is also developing a module on inclusive teaching practices to include the placer online training of ECD practitioners. The Department of Basic Education is also working on updating the screening, identification, assessment and support policy to include children from birth to four years. The DBE has also partnered with the University of Johannesburg which we encourage very much and hopefully other universities can also take this up, to develop a screening tool for ECD practitioners to enable early identification. Building on this, the DBE is also

engaging with Department of Health to ensure referral system and support teams are being established. The working session has been held to develop standard operating procedures for the establishment of school-based support team and district-based support teams.



Finally Chairperson, the DBE has contracted Uhambo Foundation to conduct capacity building for ECD practitioners and parents. They also have been holding dialogues and training sessions in the Eastern Cape, Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal, and Western Cape. To date, 8 337 ECD practitioners have been trained on the implementation of the policy on screening, identification, assessment and support to ensure that all learners, including learners with disabilities are supported.



Regarding access to formal learning programmes, 4 381 are benefiting from the learning programme for learners with profound intellectual disabilities. Chairperson, it is at this point that I as a Minister of Social Development also call on parents to recognise and realise quite early when their children have such challenges and make sure that they are attended to, so that they are not only attended to at school, but they are also attended to at home. I thank you.

Ms L H ARRIES: Hon House Chair, I will take the question on behalf of hon Mashabela. This question is a very touchy question for me because I have a child that has cerebral palsy, she is five years old. I know the struggle that I have, because currently there is no single ECD in the country and yes, I understand it is the Minister of Basic Education that accommodates these children ... [Inaudible.] I want to pose the question: By government’s own estimation, there are about

400 000 to 600 000 children with disabilities who are not going to school. This includes children who are ought to be in ECD centres, but unable to because these centres are not equipped. Centres are not equipped with dealing with children with disabilities.


While planning more comprehensive approach to including children with disabilities, is the department doing anything to ensure that those who have been excluded in the past are provided with opportunities for schooling at the moment? If so, what are the specific details?



The MINISTER OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: I do appreciate and understand where you come from when it comes to these issues and I know as a matter of fact that they are centres, but I can say to you the centres are not necessarily as equipped as

much as they are supposed to. That is why as the Department of Social Development, together with the Department of Basic Education have to do a check ... We have to have a checklist, where exactly are these schools and what is how are these schools equipped. But I’m sure that the Minister of Basic Education can also answer better from a point of view of what is practically there.



I can tell you from my own personal experience that, moving around at the time before it went to the Department of Basic Education, I was not happy because the National Development Agency was one of those agencies that was doing a lot of work with regard to equipping these ECDs I think as a way forward, the government does have to develop a comprehensive and comprehensive is about ensuring that we learn from others with best practices, what needs to be done.



All I can say to you, it’s not yet adequate, and what I can say to you, I’m hoping that my department and the Department of Basic Education can continue to work together because the President has been very clear to me that, the fact that ECDs have been handed over to Department of Basic Education does not remove the responsibility from ourselves and Department of

Social Development. I am sure the Minister of Basic Education can give a broader answer I thank you.



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Eh Mme Manganye. The hon Manganye. You are the next to make a follow-up question Mama Jane. Oh!





Moh J MANGANYE: Ntate! Ntate! O seke wa tshega thata. O seke. Ke godile, ga ke a utlwa sentle.




So, give me a chance.





Ke lona lo dirang gore batho fa bale mo gare ba seke ba bua.





No! No! I am not going to take ... [Inaudible] ... nonsense. Thank you very much Chair. What measures is the department instituting to ensure that National Student Financial Aid Scheme, NSFAS system is efficient in the upcoming academic year and what alternative mechanism exists to intervene in

circumstances of challenges by the service providers? Thank you.



The MINISTER OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: Chairperson, yes, we are one government. Yes, we are supposed to know what’s happening everywhere. But unfortunately, this is not my question because it’s a question of NSFAS. I don’t think it would be proper for me to answer. Even if I know some things, I am not an expect. Thank you.



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Okay, otherwise I would assist. I didn’t hear well what the question was saying, I couldn’t hear it. I would have assisted even before you stood up Minister. My apologies. Can we ... hon member can you assist us. I saw you standing. Yes. Oh, it is you Baba Stock? Thank you very much. Let’s redo it. Mama Manganye I think there was a confusion. Don’t worry about it, we will solve it. That is why now I am asking for a follow up. Your name was put on this question, but I will now take it to the hon Stock to proceed with it for Social Development. At the same time, may I ask the Whips to assist us on the process going forward.

Thank you.

Mr D M STOCK: Thank you very much hon House Chairperson. Thank you very much Minister for your response as well. Identifying autism and other disabilities can occur when children have gone beyond the ECD phase. So, I would like to find out from the hon Minister: What measures or mechanisms does the department have to assess the abilities of the children at the level of the early childhood development and also at the lower primary to ensure the adequate interventions that the department are actually doing from time to time. Thank you very much hon Chair.



The MINISTER OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: I think let’s start from the point of view that the ECDs have now been moved to Department Basic Education. That being the case that does not remove us, as the Department of Social Development as well as the Department of Health, being able to ensure that we put systems in place. I think in the South African context, we have people who are privileged enough to be able to make sure that when their children are born, they get the necessary attention and the checks and balances and all. But many of our children at that level, leave hospital without full appreciation and understanding of some of the challenges that might be faced by parents thereafter.

Therefore, I am of the view that what remains of us as a Department of Social Development working together with the Department of Health, we have to be able to assist in developing systems that can be able to assist as the children go to your clinics from the time that they are born. What is checked out at the clinics must not be what is normally checked out as many of our parents do not even have enough knowledge as to other things that need to be checked to avoid a situation where you only discover when the charges go to ECD that there are these problems.



I am sure that the Minister of ... I keep sending it to where it belongs. The Minister of Basic Education will also be able to cover specifically maybe the systems, but from where I stand and the little experience I have in the department, remember that I got into the Department of Social Development and by then already the decision to take ECDs to the Department of Basic Education was there and we made sure that that is done. However, I do think it’s not enough that our clinics, our hospitals do not have sometimes the systems of checking some of the weaknesses or some of the challenges that can be faced by parents as their children begin to be exposed to early childhood development. I thank you.

Ms M E SUKERS: Hon Minister, it is unclear which Ministry should be dealing with this question following the function shift. The Department of Basic Education, DBE currently struggles to provide children with disabilities, never mind neuro diverse learners in basic education with a quality education. The inclusion of the ECD will only increase this burden. Which department is registering ECDs? Is note being taken of ECDs specialising in special needs and can the Minister follow up and provide the House with an indication of how many ECDs have been registered? Thank you Chair.



The MINISTER OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: As the member is very much aware that the functions in totality were handed over to the Department of Basic Education. Again as I said, we are one government if there are certain things that I will need to answer from the Department of Social Development, I will do that as the member is also indicating that can I give them the data. The Minister of Basic Education is here. However, if the member wants me to follow up and get the necessary information, I’ll be too happy to do so. Thank you.



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): I hope that she understands that with numbers you cannot just thumb suck them,

you have to be sure with the question. The last follow-up question will come from hon Abrahams. Thank you.



Ms A L A ABRAHAMS: Good afternoon Minister. On Sunday Carte Blanche aired an extremely disturbing story of child abuse and human rights violation with regards to children with disabilities at the Ikwezi Lokusa Special School in the Eastern Cape. It is not the first time the story has been highlighted and brought to the attention of government. The Department of Social Development, DSD is still responsible for child welfare and child protection. What preventative interventions exists between DSD and DBE to ensure vulnerable children with disabilities are not being abused, neglected, abandoned by their caregivers at special needs schools, dormitories and ECDs as well as other government facilities as witnessed in this particular story on Carte Blanche. Thank you.



The MINISTER OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: Can I maybe start from a point of legislation and regulations and everything that surrounds the protection of children and in particular the protection of children the Child Protection Act. It is one thing to have legislation. It is one thing to have regulations. It is another to make sure that from the family,

from the homes, from the homes that are even supported by the Department of Social Development, we have systems that enable the reporting on such incidences. I think that as a Department of Social Development from a legislative point of view, according to the constitutional provisions, we have covered that.



But I must say it’s not adequate and I feel that families need to be empowered enough to know where they are supposed to go to when such incidences happen. I think there’s still a weakness from that point of view of the reporting of such incidences, but when such incidences are reported, we are very clear that action must be taken. But it’s not just about action, it is also about supporting some of these families because it’s not to say that those things happen because families want to just make it happen, but there are conditions and certain circumstances that end up leading to such abuses happening. So, all I can say is we need to try and strengthen our community support so that such reporting can be done and be done on time.



We do have centres as the Department of Social Development across the country, in districts but they are not adequate

either, to make sure that we support our people. Thank you, Chair.



Question 372:



House Chair, thanks to the hon member for the question. I would just like to start by saying that National Student Financial Aid Scheme, NSFAS, does indeed account for the work that it does. Firstly, NSFAS is often before the portfolio committee, including this morning and that session has just finished now shortly before this, to account for the work that it actually does.


But also, NSFAS does account to me as Minister via its board. In fact, I met with them three weeks ago and raised all the issues that are concerns from our side as the department as well as from other stakeholders to actually address all those and they are supposed to come back to me this week.



And also, I need to point out that much as there are glitches here and there, but the NSFAS disbursement system is functional. Hundreds of thousands of NSFAS students, both in universities and colleges, are getting their monies, whether

it’s payment of tuition fees or it is giving the necessary allowances.



Nevertheless, I met with the board because I was picking up quite a number of challenges because our approach and instruction to NSFAS is that it must respond timeously to each and every query and that allowances for all the students must be paid on time. That is why I have directed the board to give me a turnaround strategy by the end of this week, to address the issues of some snags in the payment of allowances.


Also, three weeks ago I had a meeting with both the Universities South Africa, which represents the vice chancellors of our universities together with NSFAS and myself and my departmental officials to iron out whatever challenges are there, including the perennial problem of quick exchange of data between institutions and NSFAS.



My department has also facilitated an engagement between NSFAS and National Treasury to engage on NSFAS, information and communications technology, ICT strategy and needs, which is in the process of being reviewed. And also, NSFAS has been advised about monthly meetings with the department that must

take place to ensure regular reporting and monitoring of the execution of the Auditor General’s recommendations.



I want to say in ending, hon House Chair, the glitches must not then become a means to say NSFAS is dysfunctional. We continue to graduate no less than 200 NSFAS graduates each year and NSFAS continues to two pay its allowances to hundreds of thousands of students and this year we have reached a million students who are being funded by NSFAS in both our universities and colleges. Thank you very much, hon House Chair.



Ms N T MKHATSHWA: House Chair, thank you very much to the hon Minister. House Chair, NSFAS is a quintessential tool to ensuring that young people in this country have access to education, which can improve the livelihoods of the communities and families that they come from.


Therefore, these snags that hinder the timeous distribution of allowances that lead to students who should be funded being defunded, that lead to a delay in us accrediting accommodation on time, that young people should have access to, so that they are not left to be loitering in the streets, really affect the impact that NSFAS is having on our education system.

Therefore, what are we doing to ensure that in the academic year, 2024 we don’t have these similar snags in the sector? Thank you so much, House Chair.


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Thank you, before you respond, Minister, hon Bilankulu and all others on the virtual platform, please mute your gadgets. We are being disturbed.

The hon Minister.





House Chair, just very quickly, let me also just start by clarifying this concept of defunding. There are those students who are being defunded, strictly speaking, because defunding means students who deserve to be given money, get given money and that money gets withdrawn, that would be defunding. What is happening is that NSFAS is consistently checking whether those who have been allocated money are eligible for it. So, in the process we identify students, even middle-class parents who are defrauding the system and when we discover that, we don’t defund with them as beneficiaries.



So, I need to clarify that, and we are not going to stop doing that because that’s corruption to actually access NSFAS when we actually do not deserve to be and we are looking at the

issue of the missing middle for next year, those who do not qualify for NSFAS but also do not find it easy to actually pay.


Also, NSFAS has got an appeals system which we are appealing to students to actually use it. If you feel you have been unjustly removed from students who are eligible, you have a chance to actually appeal and NSFAS has committed that they would ... their turnaround time to appeals has greatly improved in order to address students who may have been wrongly removed from those who actually are benefitting.



Lastly, and most importantly, we are part of asking NSFAS board to give us a turnaround strategy – it’s not only just to deal with matters now, but to ensure that in the new academic year, we are actually ready to be able to deal with all the problems.


As I say NSFAS, I meet with the Board, I also engage the Chairperson regularly. We have also agreed that NSFAS is going to be attending the monthly meetings of the vice chancellors and also attend the meetings of the college principals on a monthly basis between now and for the longest of time to actually come. So, that we ensured that nothing happens to

actually endanger the start of the academic year and our focus also I dare say is not only at the start ... [Interjection.] [Time expired.]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Unfortunately, ... I gave you extra time Minister, let’s observe the Rules. Thank you.




Thank you, I am sorry about that, House Chair.




Mr S S ZONDO: House Chair, I am really, really disappointed on the response of the Minister because in the morning we had a meeting with NSFAS and what he is responding about contradicts what NSFAS said to us as the committee. But I’m just asking this question for the sake of asking it now because one, as the committee we have satisfied ourselves with the NSFAS and they have admitted to some things that have done which are wrong and they promised us to keep up and do some things to make sure that they come to party in terms of student crises.



But I want to ask the Minister on the issue of the four service providers that provide allowances to students, the

report shows that there was some fraud. [Interjection.]


[Time expired.]




The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Your time is up. I want you to ask the question ...



Mr S S ZONDO: I am asking the question ...




The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon member, I want to refer you to the Rules. You have one minute, so but I allow you to ask your question now.



Mr S S ZONDO: Thanks, House Chair, what is it that the department is doing in terms of accountability from the NSFAS side as I am saying that the four service providers that are providing allowances before they were given ... [Interjection.]


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): No, I don’t want a story sir.





Asifuni indaba, asifuni indaba ... [Akuzwakali.] ...



Mr S S ZONDO: But House Chair, it’s not a story. House Chair, can you give me just five second ...




The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): No, no, no, no, this is not a debate I am sorry, I have given you enough time. I think the Minister will be able to respond. The hon, the Minister.




Mnu S S ZONDO: sengibonile vele ukuthi uNgqongqoshe ungene kule nto.






Thank you very much, hon House Chair.





Angazi uMthiyane uthi ngingene kuphi.








also want to challenge you, Mthiyane, what is it that NSFAS said which contradicts what I’ve said? Did they say to you

they don’t account because that’s what I have said now? Did they say to you that there are no challenges, which is what I have said that there are challenges and the point I was making is that the challenges and the glitches we have must not distract from the system.



The problem, hon House Chair, with the opposition in particular, they are attacking NSFAS because they know this is one of the single biggest achievements of the ANC-led government, funding students from poor families. So, they are trying by all means to actually discredit NSFAS, nobody said that NSFAS doesn’t have problems.


I told you that I met with the board of NSFAS I said to them I want a report by the end of the month. They requested that they are actually going to come back to me this time. From that report I want to know where the problems are, if problems are being picked up and NSFAS must have told you also that they are investigating and also, don’t come here and think that I have not been briefed about the essence of what happened in the committee this morning.



If I find anything that is wrong, I will act. If the board comes back to me and says, we have found these problems with

those who are distributing allowances, you know and so on, I will then act. I am actually not going to sit back. But I’m not the NSFAS board. I’m giving NSFAS board the chance because they are the governing structure that is actually running NSFAS. But I won’t fold my arms where they are actually problems.



So, there is nothing that I have said that contradicts what NSFAS said to you this morning and I am fully aware, by the way, of what NSFAS and the department said to you this morning. The fact that I was not there does not mean that I do not know.




Ayikho yinhle lento, Mthiyane, yokuthi usukume eNdlini ehlonipheke kangaka uzokhuluma into engekho. [Kwaphela Isikhathi.]





Mr B N HERRON: House Chair, thank you Minister. Minister, we know ... [Interjection.]



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Order, order members! Yes, please speak.

Mr B N HERRON: Thank you House Chair, we know that NSFAS is for many students the only hope to pursuing higher education and there are number of complaints around the inefficiencies of the payment system and the hardship that this causes. Part of the complaints, Minister, is the lack of response to student feedback. Can the Minister advise whether he plans to intervene with NSFAS with reforming its communication system with students paying special attention to the feedback and complaints that they give in order to match or align with the development of the payment system? Thank you.





Thank you very much to hon Herron. Hon Herron, I have said to NSFAS, and we agreed I’m sure also they raise this thing in the committee, that they are not responding as fast as I would like them to respond to the problems. Myself, I have been to NSFAS more than once, sat there and answered calls myself.

Just to get a sense of how the systems are working and so on.




There is a lot we agreed with NSFAS and with the board when I met with the Board that there are challenges in terms of communication broadly, as well as timely responses to some of the queries, whether it’s appeals or not and also we are

working, as I have said, with National Treasury to ensure that NSFAS gets additional money.



By the way, we have already released one R100, 000 000 for NSFAS to immediately work at improving its own systems because it has grown now it's actually huge. So, I do admit to this and NSFAS itself admitted and that is why I am saying I am expecting a response by the end of this week as to how they are dealing with all the problems, including the very same problems you are raising I have raised with them. Thank you very much, hon House Chair.



Mr A M SHAIK EMAM: House Chairperson, hon Minister, I am satisfied with your explanation that you are dealing with the issue of ... [Inaudible.] ... and those that have been rejected. However, I want to take you down another road. Do you not believe that the added pressure that NSFAS finds itself as a result of many applicants and I know you have found what, 40 000 fraudulent applications being made more importantly, without any measures in place to ensure that those that you are funding do actually add 10 classes that they do perform because we have a very high levels of dropouts in the country? Whereas on the other hand we have students that want this assistance and can’t get it.

So, don’t you think we should redirect our spending in this field, particularly those that are deserving, that perform work that wants to go to school but not using the students financially for everything else but education? Thank you.





House Chairperson, thank you very much hon member. I want to say that you are right that there are added pressures on NSFAS because the demand is huge from students from poor and

working-class backgrounds to actually attend to NSFAS.




We monitor NSFAS all the time as a department. Myself as a Minister, I am in constant interaction, with for instance, the chairperson of the board as well as interacting with the executive management of NSFAS as and when it is necessary.



We are also identifying a very important matter, which is the bigger problem in the technical and vocational education and training, Tvet, colleges that some students come at the beginning of the month. It is different now; they get the money through their own cards they receive the money they don’t attend.

That is why we set a maximum and said whoever is benefiting must at least attend 80% of the classes. We are working with the college principals because that’s where the problem is bigger to ensure that we monitor and also that they report. Because some students are using this thing as a typical social grant, you know they go and receive if this money or it comes into their cards they don’t attend.



This is not just an ordinary social grant, it’s a grant for education so we are working together. That is why also, as I have said, we have set up the system. The NSFAS must interact on a monthly basis, with university vice chancellors and college principals. So that they are able to identify the problem timeously and be able to act.



The other problem by the way comes from the institutions who also do not give information to NSFAS timely. That is why, what I have been working towards, is a common ICT platform for easy communication between NSFAS and the institutions as well as the students. I thank you very much hon House Chair.


Question 369:



the question from the hon Jafta. The South African Heritage

Resources Agency undertakes the process of assessing the heritage sites for grading and declaration when the entity receives a nomination of the identified sites in terms of the National Heritage Resources, Act 25 of 1999. When the entity receives this nomination, the process would be to identify the relevant institution or department in Lesotho with whom the South African Heritage Resources Agency, SAHRA, will engage with and work together with identified stakeholders towards identification of the site assessment of the submitted nomination dossier and proposed declaration after successful public consultation process.



It is important, Chair, to note that where sites of South African heritage significance are in other countries the laws of that country would apply in recognising such a site as a site of heritage significance. Our heritage legislation, the National Heritage Resources; Act 25 of 1999, section 56 does also make provision for the SAHRA to co-operate with heritage bodies outside of South Africa for production of South African heritage resources identified in other countries. The clause there would be clause one, which reads; a heritage resources authority may assist and co-operate with heritage bodies outside of the Republic. The second clause would read; if agreed upon between the government of South Africa and the

government of any other state, the SAHRA has power with the concurrence of the Minister to perform in that state any functions which a heritage resources authority would be capable of performing in South Africa in terms of this Act. Thank you very much, Chair.



Mr S M JAFTA: Let me first apologise for not being physically in the House, Chairperson. Deputy Minister, it is a common course that the declaration of the Maluti Qacha’s Nek Road as a nodal point will have to be followed by the maintenance and upgrading of this route including the Maluti Road through a collaborative effort between the Ministries of Transport and Public Works. In this regard, does the Minister intends to have discussions with these Ministers to see this project come into fruition or he now sees no historical significance of the roads since the ANC is now in power? Thank you, Chair.




much to hon Jafta. As hon Jafta knows that there is always co- operation between departments and government, we always agree and understand that it is important that this government must always make sure that between departments and between layers of government there be co-operation. However, the question that hon Jafta is not understanding is that, for Qacha’s Nek

there is no submission that has been made to the SAHRA to declare it. Once that submission has been made, the process of making sure that the roads and everything else that he actually mentions which should be part of the entire project can be discussed at that particular time. At this point in time there is no submission that is asking for Qacha’s Nek to be declared a heritage site. Thank you so much.



Ms R C ADAMS: Deputy Minister, transformation of the heritage landscape is a critical aspect of memory and for nation building. What liberation struggle related and other memorial projects will be undertaken to conserve and preserve our history? I thank you.




much, hon Adams. The department is finalising initial consultations on a third draft of a guiding policy on national heritage legacy projects to deepen the formation of the heritage landscape as a critical element of memory and nation building. The legacy programme encompassing the resistance and liberation route project is one of those programmes that we have a profound transformation agenda to restore the dignity and pride of our forbears. The department will continue to build statues, monuments, memorials and museums to preserve

legacy and pay homage to people, events, episodes, phenomena and epochs that shaped the South African society over centuries, over decades and years including our liberation struggle heritage as part of developing the resistance and liberation heritage ... [Inaudible.] ...



The Department of Sport, Arts and Culture, DSAC, is conducting a study about the South African gallows, for instance, and it is about wish that this research will be used by our museums to develop content for exhibitions and to educate the South Africans about this forgotten disturbing past. Statues, the department plans to unveil and install as iconographic symbols in public spaces to continue to transform the heritage landscape, for instance, this will include the Inkosi Bambatha in Greytown; King Cetshwayo statue in KwaZulu-Natal; Artery Gumede statue at eThekwini City Hall; mama uCharlotte Maxeke statue at the Union Buildings; mama uAdelaide Tambo bust at Mbizana; a memorial of Chief Chali; the visionary leader who donated land to James Sterwart to build the University of Fort Hare.



The Department of Sport, Arts and Culture is leading the African Continent in advocating and pushing for organisations such as the United Nations Educational, Scientific and

Cultural Organisation, UNESCO, to recognise and identify more sites. It is important to remember that working with Correctional Services in Kroonstad, for instance, there is a female prison there that we are working to make sure that Moqhaka Local Municipality must consider renaming some of those ... [Inaudible.] ... into the prison after the women stalwarts. The Department of Sport, Arts and Culture is finalising the preservation ... [Interjection.] ...



THE HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): ... thank you very much, ma.








Mr D JOSEPH: Deputy Minister, the families of uMkhonto weSizwe and many other ANC supporters who were part of the liberation movement are in disbelief of what this once liberation movement, the ANC, has done to this country. There is a big difference between liberation movement and governing a country. Are there any discussions or agreements between South Africa and Lesotho on Qacha’s Nek region where the political battles took place? What research has been done or is available to promote and enhance peace in the region in the

interest of cultural and political significance? Who is responsible for the submissions to SAHRA as you referred to, Deputy Minister? Thank you.




submission, hon Joseph, can be done by any interested people. It can be done by individuals; it can be done by organisations; it can be done by nongovernmental organisations, NGOs; it can be done by municipalities and it can be done by anybody to the South African Heritage Resources Agency. Once that submission is made the process will kick in, where then there would also be from us as the department having worked with the SAHRA, we then contact the Lesotho government because Qacha’s Nek is not only on our side, it is also on the Lesotho government.



Then, as I have already explained that the National Heritage Resources Act 25 of 1999 section 56, allows the SAHRA to co- operate with heritage bodies outside of South Africa for protection of South African Heritage Resources identified in other countries. So, once a submission is made then that process will actually kick in. The problem we have right now is that there is no submission of that kind that has been

done. Therefore, there is no discussion with Lesotho on this issue as there has not been any submission. Thank you so much.



Mr E MTHETHWA: Deputy Minister since the advent of democracy you have been naming streets and buildings after ANC and uMkhonto weSizwe, MK, and struggle heroes into you preserving our heritage, which is the correct thing to do after apartheid. However, when will we start seeing preservation of our history that includes struggle heroes such as Mzwakhe Mbuli, an artist and struggle hero; James ... [Inaudible.]

..., an ANC artist who was on death row; Maponya, a successful business man against all odds of apartheid; Jomo Sono, an equivalence of the Pele Brazils of this world; PAC and APLA heroes’ equivalence of ANC and MK? Why has government not joined the fight to preserve struggle forms such as “dubul’ibhunu” (shoot the boar) in the quest of documenting our struggle? Thank you, Chair ... [Interjections.] ...


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon members, we want to hear the response.





much hon Mthethwa for the question. We understand that you are still very new, hon Mthethwa, and it will take time for you to

understand how the processes and the legislation in Parliament works. Nevertheless, let me explain one thing on the issue of geographical names, no one wakes up in the ANC and decides.

The majority of the people of South Africa who are the members of the African National Congress are the ones that does submissions to the province. Then, the provinces after they are done with shortlisting, they then work with the national geographic names using the legislation.


Myself, as the Deputy Minister, I don’t do the naming. The people of South Africa decides who their heroes are.

Therefore, having understood who are the people that fought for freedom in this country - which are mainly members of the African National Congress - submissions then are made by the members of the public and that process takes place. I am sure as time goes on, hon Mthethwa, you will understand that as the EFF grows it will start to have a membership that would then understand that they must do the submissions. Once those submissions are made we will process them, otherwise, we don’t take that decision on behalf of the citizens of this country.



Those that you are naming like Mzwakhe Mbuli and others, nobody disputes that they might have done something for this country but the people of South Africa must do the submission,

including you, hon Mthethwa. You can do that submission if you feel that Mzwakhe, “dubul’ibhunu” (shoot the boar) and any other person they must be recognised. Do the submission and allow the process to go on. Thank you so much.



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Thank you. Order, hon members. Thank you.



Mr E MTHETHWA: ... [Laughter.] ...




The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Thank you. Hon Mthethwa, just mute before you forget. Mute your gadget. Let’s proceed to question number 373 asked to the Minister of Human Settlements by the hon Dr Mkhize.



Question 373:

The MINISTER OF HUMAN SETTLEMENTS: Hon House Chairperson, just to indicate, in 2021, we took a decision as a sector to be able to unblock projects. This was to be done in three financial years. Out of that, it was decided that in those three financial years, we'll start with the last financial year, which we targeted 192 blocked projects that would be supported in the financial year 2022/23.

And when we monitored, out of the 192 in the 2022/23, we realised that 103 were activated and the implementation is ongoing. Remaining of those is 89 projects which were carried over for the financial year 2022/23. For the 2023/24, we've identified 619 projects and in the remaining we'll do 299.

Overall, it's 3 445 projects that have been blocked.




In terms of the diagnostic work that we have done, we have seen that there are various reasons why we have blocked projects. Firstly, the poor performance of contractors, abandoned sites, lack of bulk infrastructure and linked services, illegal land occupation, geotech variations, construction mafias and community unrest.



We have committed to continue to unblock these projects in understanding that communities are looking for services and this work is underway. Thank you hon Chairperson.




USIHLALO WENDLU (Nk M G Boroto): Baba u-Mpumza, asazi noma ukwindlu yokusebenzela noma ukuphi kodwa asifuni ukwazi, vala. Baba u-Mpumza, vala. Nkosi yami. Nina bezobuchwepeshe besimanje, khiphani uBaba u-Mpumza, akusizi ngoba akezwa.

Ngathi usendaweni yokusebenzela.



We proceed now with the hon Malematja, taking charge of the question as posted by Dr Mkhize, allowed by Rule 137(10)(a).




Mr C N MALEMATJA: House Chair ...






Dumela Tona, kago ya dintlo le kabo ya dintlo ke tieo batho ba di lebeletiego ka leihlo ka ntihotiho. Bothata bo tiwelela ge dintlo tieo di agwago di sa fele. Maitemogelo a gago le moiomo wa gago ka mo lekaleng le ke seo re se thabelago ebile se re tshephiiago gore okare go tla ba le phetogo. Na e ka ba ke nako efe yeo re tla bonago ntlo e agwa – go tloga mathomong ya ba ya fela ntle le go emiiwa, gona le gore e thomiwe go engwe, e fediie batho pelo? Ke a leboga.



TONA YA BODULO BJA BATHO: Modulasetulo, ke leboga mohl Malematja. Seo re se hlalosago ge re lebeletie tieo re di dirago ka mo lefapheng le la bodulo bja batho ke gore go tloga kgale go bile le mathata a gore ga go na batho ba go kgonthiiiia gore bao ba filwego moiomo wa go aga ba dira moiomo ka tshwanelo. Se sengwe gape seo re se bonego ke gore diabo tia quantum tia rena di be di sa oketiwe ngwaga ka

ngwaga. Re ile ra tiea maikarabelo a gore ngwaga ka ngwaga re tla oketia diabo tia quantum tia rena gore boradikontraka ba tle ba kgone go ioma, ba se dule ba sa fetie moiomo. Re hlalositie gape gore baagi bao ba ba radiago meiomong, ba radiwa ke bao re ba bitiago construction mafias - re kgopetie gore ba tihireletiwe gore ba kgone go fetia meago yeo, ka ge go na le bao ba emetiego dintlo tia bona gore mmuio o kgone go ba thuia o ba fe tiona. Ke ka moo re iomago ka kgonthiiiio gore tatelo yeo re e beilego ya mengwaga ye meraro e tle e kgone go tiwela. Ke a leboga.





Dr N V KHUMALO: Thank you Chair, I’ll take the question.



The HOUSE CHAIRPESRON (Ms M G Boroto): Proceed.




Dr N V KHUMALO: Hon Minister, taking into consideration that there are instances when the housing projects having been blocked, as you rightfully said, as a result of construction mafias, and in some known cases, ANC cadres often conspire and cut deals with these construction mafias, what has the Minister done to date to ensure an end to construction mafias across the country to ensure that recipients of those

particular projects rights to shelter do not continuously get trampled on? Thank you Chairperson.



The MINISTER OF HUMAN SETTLEMENTS: Thank you very much hon and House Chairperson and hon member. My responsibility as the Minister of Human Settlement does not involve law enforcement. So, law enforcement agencies will be better off to answer. We have requested their support so that they can ensure that those who are in construction are able to start and finish their projects.


We have requested the law enforcement agencies to protect contractors, especially female contractors. Regarding the issue where you are talking about politicians, I have no record in my case to say this one specifically has been convicted for being involved in construction mafias except for one in the Western Cape that is currently going through court case as the former Member of the Mayoral Committee, MMC for Human Settlements. Thank you.





USIHLALO WENDLU (Nk M G Boroto): Bakuhluphelani kanti?

Dr S S THEMBEKWAYO: Hon House Chairperson, I’ll take the question on behalf of hon Makeseni.



The HOUSE CHAIRPESRON (Ms M G Boroto): Thank you. Proceed.




Dr S S THEMBEKWAYO: Has the Minister conducted any investigations into the reasons why these projects were blocked in the first place? If so, what were the reasons and what actions have been taken against those responsible for the blockages? Thank you.


The MINISTER OF HUMAN SETTLEMENTS: Hon Chairperson, as I said, a diagnostic report has been produced that gave us various reasons why the projects were blocked. Some constructors would leave site, for example, because the projects became unviable. That's why we took the decision to increase quantums annually.



When I arrived in the portfolio in 2021, the quantums had not been increased since 2015. So, each year contractors find it difficult to survive because of inflation increases. Secondly, it’s the issue that I reflected on in terms of construction mafias who go in the and you find contractors running away and that's why we've asked them to assist. What some of them have done is to increase their operational cost to be able to put

security as part of their project plan and operations and that has been factored in.



The last point, as I said, it's the issues where you have nonperforming contractors. The unfortunate part with blacklisting is that the process of blacklisting with National Treasury becomes challenging so all you can do regarding contractors is terminate.


For example, we tried with one service provider in Limpopo, we found that Treasury is delaying the process because they responsible for the central database and they say they need some court orders and we do not have that as a resource in the department. So, what we do with those contractors, we simply terminate and do not want to appoint them within our portfolio. Thank you very much.




USIHLALO WENDLU (Nk M G Boroto): Ngithe MaButhelezi, angikaho ukuthi iNkosi uButhelezi.



Ink E M BUTHELEZI: Hon Chair, it seems as if she is not connected that is why I wanted to take the question.

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): She is online, she can speak. Hon Buthelezi?



Ms S A BUTHELEZI: Hon Minister, what measures have you put in place to ensure that the construction of permanent housing units in KwaZulu-Natal will begin on the ... [Interjections.]






USIHLALO WENDLU (Nk M G Boroto): Mama uButhelezi, ima kancane. Ima kancane. Cha! Bakithi, asimuzwa. Kanti kwenzenjani? [Ubuwelewele.] Mhlonishwa uButhelezi, ima kancane.

Ungqongqoshe kufanele ezwe. Uzozwa kanjani bakithi, ngiyanicela. Anike nithule.




Proceed hon Buthelezi. You can restart your question. Hon Buthelezi?



Ms S A BUTHELEZI: Am I audible Chairperson?




The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Yes, you may restart your question because there was a lot of noise.

Ms S BUTHELEZI: Hon Minister, considering that there were 13 land parcels that had been identified and surveyed to ensure suitability for building, what contingencies are in place for areas that did not meet the sufficient survey criteria for building as a decrease in the number of houses would not be favourable considering that flood victims have already been left in temporary housing units for far too long? Thank you, Chairperson.





MODULASETULO WA NGWAKO (Moh M G Boroto): O kwele, mma? Ge o kwele ... [Tsenoganong.]




Order members, please, order! Proceed Minister.




The MINISTER OF HUMAN SETTLEMENTS: Chairperson, I think the on member has confused the questions. The question that deals with floods is Question 80, I am not there yet. Once I have responded to the question, I will take a follow-up on it.



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): IFP, are you losing your slot? I am very generous. Please proceed for this question.

Mr E M BUTHELEZI: Thank you very much for your kindness hon Chairperson. Hon Minister, in your response, you made it very clear that you understand what’s causing these blockages and you've spoken to several interventions that needs to be collaborated to deal with this matter. Since this is not a recent problem, can you admit that this is government’s failure to deal with this issue because, if you cite the fact that some of these challenges need law enforcement agencies, the fact that there is no clear explanation in terms of your response that speaks to different departments coming together to deal with this problem, I think for me, it means that your government has failed. Can you admit to that?





UNGQONGQOSHE WEZOKUHLALISWA KWABANTU: Othi ngichaze kahle ngesiZulu, uma sikhuluma ukuthi uHulumeni uhlulekile ubhale ukuthi akukho okusekwenziwe. Uma sesibheka lokhu kwaseMnyangweni Wezokuhlaliswa Kahle Kwabantu, sesakhe izindlu ezingaphezu kuka-3 million, lokho akusho ukuthi uHulumeni uhlulekile. Okwesibili, uma sesikhuluma ngosomabhizinisi abasebancane lo Hulumeni oseke wabaxhasa, asisho ukuthi uHulumeni uhlulekile. Namhlanje, lo Mnyango Wezokuhlaliswa Kahle Kwabantu unikeza cishe u-R11 billion kwabantu besifazane ukuze babe neqhaza abalibambayo kulo mnyango babe

onokontiraki. Uhulumeni ka-ANC kuphela okwenzayo lokho. Akukhona ukuhluleka. Abanye siyabacela ukuthi bafunde la kithi ukuthi kwenziwa kanjani.


Izigebengu siba khona kuyo yonke indawo. Kufanele sisebenzisane ngoba ezinye izigebengu zibuye kumakhaya ethu. Akuzona ezibuya kuHulumeni, akuzona ezibuya kuKhongolose. Uma sibheka KwaZulu-Natal, nalapho kuphethe Inkatha khona, siyazithola izigebengu. Kufanele ngithi sibuya eNkatheni?

Lutho. Izigebengu zikhona nje emphakathini yonke.



Uhulumeni uwonke kufanele ubambisane abhekane nalezi zigebengu. Ngiyabonga, mhlonishwa.


Question 374:



would say Tshabalala, J T. Thank you so much, House Chair. Let me thank the question. Firstly, the Department of Water and Sanitation really undertakes studies over different planning horizons to drive interventions that are really implemented, for ensuring water security for the country. The interventions are construction of new dams. You would have seen in the country that we have been constructing new dams. We did reduction of demand by implementing water conservation and

demand management, the development of exploitation of groundwater sources, investment, desalination, maintenance, and refurbishment of infrastructure.


Also, the department, through its R Big Funding and We Seek Funding, we have really been assisting municipalities for them to be able to provide water and sanitation services by building bulk infrastructure projects, refurbishment and, currently, infrastructure that will also assist in the improvement and continuous supply of water and sanitation services.



The Department of Water and Sanitation has also established what we call Water Partnership Office, in collaboration with the Development Bank of South Africa, together with the Salga, to ensure that indeed the supporting of the municipalities with financial structuring, feasibility studies, contracting with the private sector, to harness private sector skills and commercial blended financing of the public-private partnerships of water and sanitation services. I thank you.



Ms M L PIETERSEN: Thank you, Chair. My follow up question will be: Which communities with water challenges will be addressed

to ensure a consistent supply of water to households in the current financial year? Thank you.




for the question, hon Pieterson. You will also acknowledge that we do have many communities in so far as provinces are concerned, and that is what we are also doing. We do have municipalities in these instances that we concentrate on at this point and I really want to account on the municipalities that are concerned.



You would have the Gauteng metros that we are also dealing with, being the metros within the interventions that the Minister has been able to do. The crisis affecting Ekurhuleni at this point, the Cities of Johannesburg, Tshwane, Westonaria, and projects that are already time lined. That is what we are doing. We have given budgets to those; one of them being Vlakfontein Reservoirs that we have been able to erect. The Zuurbekom Pump Station that we are already assisting, as we assist the communities of Gauteng, including the people of Hammanskraal, in this instance.



In the eThekwini Metro, we are busy with the ministerial intervention to really deal with purposes of alleviation of

sewer, the spillages and water that the people are really facing, the refurbishment upgrades that we are doing and the maintenance of mega litres that we are also harnessing. In the City of Tshwane, you would also recognise that we have implemented the state of emergency on issues of water.



Coming to that, in Hammanskraal, the interventions for us are to ensure that we really intervene in so far as alleviating affluent discharge from Rooiwal Wastewater Treatment Plant, to ensure that people have subsequent poor quality of water and people can have potable drinking water.



In the Mangaung Metro, we are intervening as well, in so far as making sure that the people have proper supply of water. However, you would also appreciate that in many worst- performing municipalities, the Minister has really ensured that we have improved plans to ensure that the people have water. What is your problem. Sit down. Thank you.



Mr S J MOORE: Thank you, Madam Chair. Hon Deputy Minister, across South Africa, from Rustenburg in the North West, to Frances Baard District Municipalities in the Northern Cape and the Ugu District Municipality in KwaZulu-Natal, literally every municipality in Gauteng and many more, South Africa is

facing an impending water crisis that will eclipse even the current stage 6 load shedding.



South Africa is a water scarce country with a growing population and an increasingly failed infrastructure expansion programme to provide and protect this vital resource. Just today – I need to emphasise - just today, I have been contacted personally by the residents of Rosettenville, Townsview, the Hill, Oakdene, East Cliff, Leenmeer, La Rochelle, Moffat View, South Hills, Regents Park, Rose Acre, Unigrey, Eladune, Elands Park, Elands Role to Lizza Park, Rosina, City Deep and Prolocon - that is just today!


So, my question, hon Minister, is: Is there sufficient urgency being brought to this issue when we are expecting widespread outages ... [Interjections.] ... coming summer, due to the failing infrastructure and insufficient supply? Thank you.



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Thank you. Hon Moore, check your Rules Book, please. I gave you time and you exceeded. One, four, two, five! Thank you very much.




much. Your question is quite important. Indeed, we do

acknowledge that there are several challenges across the country, and that indeed it is indeed important for us to intervene with the urgency it deserves. You would have heard when I answered the interventions that we are doing, especially in Johannesburg, where you speak about Rosettenville that you have raised. I would want to draw your attention that there are several interventions that we are making. I can tell you, for instance, about the Eastern Cape on its own, In Nelson Mandela Bay, we have Noodgat Goeie lower-level water supply that we are already dealing with face-to-face. That is a project that is really taking place and we are implementing Amatole Water. That is one. We will

have Mbizana, with which we are also busy. We will have Mnquma Local Municipality, Ndlambe Local Municipality and Makana Local Municipality with which we are also busy.


When it also comes to the Free State and the entire country, we have Maluti-a-Phofung. You would understand and appreciate that the municipality is quite ailing, dilapidated and it has gotten lots of infrastructural problems, including governance management, financials and so forth. We have come together with the Minister of Co-Operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Ms Nkadimeng, to say that we need to have a holistic approach. From the Salga point of view, they need to

capacitate these municipalities so that, when we bring these R-Big and We Seek Funding, this is the interventions that we are doing across the country.


The Minister has been crisscrossing this country. We have been everywhere in this country; I can tell you that much. KwaZulu- Natal, we have been paying attention to that. In the Western Cape, if I were to tell you, there are interventions that we have been able to do as well, including Limpopo. However, we have been able to accelerate matters coming to one - Breede Valley. I do not know if you are aware that we have already increased the Breede Valley Dam canal to ensure that there is that intervention that we are putting in place. We visited there in November 2022.



We are already bringing the milestones that we have seen. We had commissioned for February 2023, this year. Drakenstein Municipality, George Municipality and other municipalities. In the City of Cape Town, especially, we have directed a compliance on issues of spillages that we see; but also, to ensure that we develop the accelerated plan to really refurbish and deal with issues of blockages that we are really experiencing. I thank you.

Mr W M THRING: Thank you, Minister. The ACDP, via hon Sukers, recently has raised the water crisis faced by residents of Warrenton in the Northern Cape. We have another crisis, amongst many in the country, developing in White River, in Mpumalanga. I tried to contact you regarding this. For the past few months, the residents of White River have had little to no water, especially in the elevated areas of the town.

When water does come out of the taps, it looks like sewer water.



Currently, there is no water from the Bundu, Phumlani and Sand River Pump Stations, allegedly affected by load shedding.

Despite promises a year ago by the Mayor of Mbombela, Cllr Makhushe, to fix or install generators at the pump station. This has not been done. Deputy Minister, the lives and livelihoods of the residents of White River are at risk. Will the Deputy Minister commit to interventions, which may include Municipal Infrastructure Support Agen, [overtalking] [overtalking] MISA to solve the water crisis in White River.

If yes, by when; and if not, why not? Thank you.





is no excuse whatsoever or any reason not to intervene anywhere, where there are issues of water and where people

really can't access water, especially potable water. So, I will not have the dates, necessarily, to say by when we should be able to intervene. However, I can give you the dates in terms of the projects that we have already been dealing with; those which we have commissioned to where we are.



We need to really appreciate that there are several areas that, as much as DWS is responsible to regulate and ensure there is good portable water, it is also responsible to make sure that there are directives that it issues so that municipalities can provide. There are water-services municipalities that are providing water to their own municipalities.


So, at a national level, ours is to ensure that what they do is of good standards. However, we must also go back to the thinking that, we need to create frameworks that are able to bring about legislative frameworks that are proposing amendments. That will be able to give us, as a national department, powers to really intervene when municipalities, including even the district level, that are unable to carry out the licence regime.

For Northern Cape, yes, hon Sukers was in contact with me. We have been in constant contact. Even yesterday, we spoke about this. There are interventions that we are doing. I will be visiting with her to those municipalities on the commitments that I have made. I can tell you that in Kgatelopele, this is what we have done. In Sol Plaatje Municipality, already we have constructed the Kulisiville, Deneysville, Tlama Kou and Rising Dam. The construction of fencing is happening at this point, and we have a budget that we have committed. We are commissioning from June 2023 to March 2024. We are on timelines. We are very clear that by 2024, we should be able to get the infrastructure rolling out.



For the Sol Plaatje, we are saying we commissioned in April 2023 until 2027. These are phases, where we are going to deal with Kimberley Bulk Water Supply that will cover the areas, including White River, where phase one emergency interventions will be rolled out, as well as phase 2 medium-term interventions and so forth. So, we have got several scopes that we really have intervened, but I will be in contact with hon Sukers to visit the said community. Thank you.



Question 400:

The MINISTER OF HEALTH: Hon member, thank you for the question. The total amount spent on the National Health Insurance, NHI, was effected through a number of grants that are direct and indirect grants. This include expenditure in the pilot district and also the contracting of various health professionals. This expenditure has been used to fund efforts to strengthen the health system performance in preparation for the implementation of the NHI, but also in terms of strengthening the health platform before the full process of the implementation of the NHI Fund comes to operation.



This funding has been used to develop and test provider payment mechanisms, expanding the National Beneficiary Registry and purchasing and providing prioritised set of health services has also been allocated for quality improvement initiatives with the aim of helping that facilities meet the standards which are envisaged in terms of accreditation under the NHI.



The total NHI direct and indirect expenditure in the 10 years from the financial year 2013-14 when this started, amounts to an amount of just over R26,05 billion. As I will explain later on, R10 billion of the direct grant was allocated during the COVID-19 because there was no other mechanism. The R10 billion

additional funding which was allocated to hire more staff to deal with COVID-19 was also channelled through the direct grant because otherwise new grant would need to be developed. There was an agreement with the National Treasury so, you can subtract R10 billion out of that has been largely to focus on the pandemic.



The National Health Insurance direct grant transfers directly to provinces for expansion of health services benefits through strategic purchasing the expenditure on this direct grant for 2012-13, up to 2015-16 financial year, was an amount of

R340 million. Now this was largely in terms of purchasing of services of private doctors. Later on this was not proceeded with because there was an agreement with provinces to transfer the money into the equitable share for provinces for them to directly acquire the services of private doctors.



The grant was later reinstated in the COVID-19 year as I have indicated to assist in terms of challenging funds to acquire services of additional staff for the COVID-19 pandemic. During this period the amount was about R12,2 billion as I have said R10 billion was directly for services of additional COVID-19 service staff. However, other funds were used for mental health or oncology services. So, that pushed the total on the

direct grant to just over R12,6 billion, but as I have said a lot of it being for COVID-19 staff.



Then we have an indirect grant which is largely used for revitalisation of health facilities, hospitals and clinics. This projects and their implementation are directly managed through the national office. The Central Chronic Medicine Dispensing and Distribution which make sure that patients can get their chronic medication nearby. The ideal clinic, patient information systems, quality improvement and the digital systems to prepare for the implementation. However, also just to improve health information systems.


Now furthermore the hon member wants to know whether: What is the amount that is going to be used over the next 10 years?

Just briefly to say it is not possible to completely predict because there are many variables when you look at the 10 year projection once the fund has been properly established. The initial benefits and the basket of services, the prices which will be accredited to service providers, the savings which will be achieved through the cutting out of communication.

Thank you very much, hon House Chairperson. [Time expired.]





MODULASETULO WA NGWAKO (Moh M G Boroto): Re a leboga, mohl. Ke re letsogo godimo ga le lengwe. Tie di ngwadilwego fa ke tie le di hlalositiego, ke nna ke di fetiiitieng mahlo. Mohl Clarke?





Mrs M O CLARKE: Hon House Chairperson, it is very interesting to hear that the Minister speaks about ideal clinics when he knows very well that in the region of about 65% of our hospitals do not comply with the ideal clinics specification, in terms of the Bill. Very few of them actually have digital systems. So, it will be very interesting to know what was spent.


However, the NHI is probably one of the most the contentious and badly thought out Bills passed by the ANC and its various members in Parliament. It is supposed to address quality universal health care, but the objective in its current form will never be realised.



All it will do is overburden the system adding to a further paralysing health system as well as the fight of our doctors and nurses as it fails to address the root causes of health

care challenges. The NHI is merely an electioneering tool as the ANC has nothing more to offer its voters next year.



Minister, Treasury has told us that this country is broke. The ANC has stolen all the money and there is nothing left. We cannot afford NHI! Your own Finance Minister did not mention the funding within his Budget Speech. Even the Deputy President is having second thoughts about the NHI wants to relook at it. If the ANC could steal the air they would and they would end up stealing medicine from sick people if the NHI is ever implemented. Mark my words!



Minister, the equations of the NHI equals Eskom two point one just another platform to loot and steal.



Given the National Treasury’s proposal to Cabinet, to drastically tighten the belt, and the fact that the department has failed to revive any kind of the budget on the NHI, the current shrink in tax fiscus in terms of our fading economy

... [Time expired.]



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Hon Clarke, your time is up! I gave you some seconds.

Hon Minister, a member is allowed to make a statement or express an opinion. Since there was no question, it is up to whether you want to respond.


The MINISTER OF HEALTH: Hon House Chairperson, I want to respond.


The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Ms M G Boroto): Proceed.




The MINISTER OF HEALTH: Hon House Chairperson, I agree with you that the hon Clarke abused the system of questions, because she basically made a statement. However, contrary to her statement, as I have indicated we are convinced that currently there is a lot of duplication, wastage and if we can be able to streamline services both in the public and the private sector. I am sure the hon Clarke is also aware that while we are aware that there have been various reports which we are dealing with together with our colleagues in the provinces where there has been maleficence. There are a number of people who are being charged where the Special Investigating Unit, SIU, has reported and other investigations and those matters are being dealt with.

However, we recently also confirmed over and above what Health Market Enquiry did say in terms of a lot of wastage in the private sector which we also want to make sure that there is more proper regulation and bring on board streamline. However, even recently where some of the service providers, it has been confirmed that they even doctor the invoices which they charge to the funders. So those are the kind of things that once we are able to streamline and make sure that there is no duplication of services, there will be savings. Our country is under stress in terms of economically, but we believe that it is a temporary setback where things will improve. However, many countries when they implemented their universal health coverage system was when the economy quite low. We believe that even in our case we cannot just step backwards simply because the economy is low. That is the time where you need more savings and more efficiency which is what a combined system where you bring public and private sector into a streamline that you will be able to effect savings. Thank you very much, hon House Chairperson.



Mr N V XABA: Hon House Chairperson, just to clarify that the NHI stand to equal access to quality of health care for all. Once more, we must also clarify that the NHI will leave no one behind.

Having said that House Chairperson and to the Minister, noting that the various health social schemes in developed countries experiences challenges of sustainability, such as the Britain National Health Services: How will the department ensure that the sustainable financing from various sources of the NHI funds. Can the Minister please guide us? Thank you.



The MINISTER OF HEALTH: Indeed hon members, we have the advantage of being able to learn some of the challenges and the successes as the hon Xaba is indicating that there are a number of those who pursue free market fee for service kind of an approach such as the United States, US, and other such countries they face even bigger challenges which is what the opponents of the NHI want us to say leave the market to determine. Now, those face even bigger challenges.



Of course those who are already on the universal health coverage because there are a number of things which you need to adjust to. The health system changes, the demands and the decease patterns. Some of those countries like the United Kingdom, UK, which are experiencing difficulties amongst others is that they have a much older population. When you have a higher life expectancy and a population which is skewed a lot more on the older people, the demands for the services

are higher and therefore you also need to adjust and structure your packages and efficiencies.



So, those are the things that we are learning from those countries and we are also learning in terms of how do you build sustainability I terms of the basket of services as yo build up. That is why even in the Bill it says very clearly that the NHI will be implemented in stages. So that you build the capacity and do not overwhelm the system at once. You build from the primary health level bring other services until when now you believe you are fully capacitated then you can bring in a lot more services. So, we are learning from those and that will be to our advantage. Thank you, hon House Chairperson.



Dr S S THEMBEKWAYO: Hon Minister for the NHI to have any effect there must be significant investments made towards improving the public health system. We have seen from the COVID-19 pandemic that the public health system is unable to provide the services it needs to be providing to the majority of our people. This is particularly true for the rural hospitals.

What in the short to medium-term will you be doing to improve the capacity and quality of the health system in the public health system. Thank you.


The MINISTER OF HEALTH: Hon House Chairperson, well, firstly let me differ with the hon Dr Thembekwayo that to the contrary while there was stress strain on the system, both in the public and private the entire South African health system came under tremendous stress. I am sure and I know that sometimes when things improve it is easy to forget. However I am sure hon members will remember that if you think of December 2020 on the Beta variant wave and if you think of also December January 2021 on the Delta variant wave, both the public and private sectors in terms of provision of services were under serious strain. However, unlike in many countries the system did not reach a stage of collapse. It showed that given a much more support it can actually be able to sustain even such pressures. However, of course additional investment is required. That is why we are pushing to say even if there are fiscal challenges, we must protect the health system and make sure that funding is protected, but also look at other ways that additional funding can be sourced. We are talking to Cabinet and Treasury. There are low hanging fruits in terms of the areas where I already the public funding system is highly

subsidising the private providers. We are looking even at those to see incrementally, which are some of those funds which can already be redirected to augment further investment in the public health system. So, those discussions are ongoing and we want to protect what is there, but also look at ways in which incremental more additional funding can be sourced from within what is already available within the 8,5% of the gross domestic product, GDP, between private funders and the national fiscus. As I said already the fiscus is providing huge subsidies in terms of the private providers. Those are the kind of things we are looking at in the reform of the funding system in the country. Thank you very much, hon House Chairperson.



Mr P A VAN STADEN: Hon House Chairperson and hon Minister, in a written answer to me dated February 2022 you stated that the NHI direct and indirect grants have been applied in an effort to strengthen the health system in preparation for the implementation of the NHI. This was to address surgical backlogs, the contracting of general practitioners to provide primary health care services, building infrastructure and the implementation of a nonperson service of component, but will help health facilities to meet the envisaged standards required for NHI accreditation.

Hon Minister can you honestly sat to this House today that all the billions of rand that have all spent on the NHI direct and indirect grants have beard any fruits in terms of surgical backlogs, have general practitioners being contracted and do you honestly think the current infrastructure of state hospitals and clinics have met the standards of NHI accreditation? Thank you House Chairperson.



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Thank you very much. What question are we on. Are we on the Minister of Social Development?





House Chairperson.


The the




Minister of Health.


L D Ntombela): I am sorry. It is






House Chairperson, I have not


given an opportunity to respond.




The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Alright. I am sorry about that.

The MINISTER OF HEALTH: Thanks, hon House Chairperson. Hon Van Staden and hon members, I would not say that our facilities are all currently meeting the standard. The Office of the Health Standard and Compliance provides us with regular updates in terms of the hospitals, but also even in terms of the primary health, we are trying to bring all those together in terms of the assessment of the ideal clinics. Hon Van Staden and all hon members, what I can say is that indeed the investments that have been made both in terms of the pilot areas the indirect grant has been spent and also the direct support for the facility upgrades, equipment and human resources, have made a lot of difference. Today there are number of areas where there were no oncology services through this support, they are able to provide oncology services.



There are a number of areas where in many of the clinics today when you go you will find that the Health Patient Registration System is functional and needs to be upgraded in terms of being able to capture the full clinical information. However, in terms of registration, many clinics are already using that. More than 60 million South Africans are already registered.

The Centralised Chronic Medicine Dispensing Distribution, CCMDD, is now catering for just under four million patients who are able to receive their medicines closer to where they

live. So, there is a plethora as we speak today as a result of those earmarked grants. Just a month ago, we launched the starting construction of the new Limpopo Academic Hospital.

There are a number of other facilities. We are not yet there in terms of a 100% compliance. There is a lot more that still needs to be done which is why I was able to respond to hon Thembekwayo that we do need additional funding to be able to bring able to bring everything to speed. However, progress has been made. Thank you, hon House Chairperson.



Question 412:




enkulu Sihlalo, okokuqala kukhona engifuna ukuthi ke ngithi ukukuchaza ngoba ngiyabona ...





 ... many a times there’s a mistake and misunderstanding between the Social Relief of Distress, as R350, which is very popular and the Social Relief of Distress Grant where maybe the disaster happened somewhere. I see that many a times people confuse the two.



Kuphinde kube khona futhi nento engaqondakali.






Maybe it’s just a lack of the information reaching the people. That the indigent persons are people whom the government always assists and provide help as indigent people. Those people who are indigent are the people who receive interventions through the policy of Cogta.




Abanye bakhona abayi-indigent bancedwa uMnyango Wemfundo Eyisisekelo isibonelo izingane ziya esikoleni zingakhokhi, ziphinde zinikezwe nenyufomu nakho konke.




Others through-Cogta they again get free water, electricity, sanitation, free access to education and the nutrition programme ...




 ... eyenzakalayo ezikolweni lapho khona lezi zingane zidla ukudla ekuseni. Zidla izidlo ezimbili esikolweni. Lokho ngifuna ukukusho ...



 ... because every time I have to answer these questions to members, I do get the sense that there is sometimes a misunderstanding of the two. However, when we talk of the Social Relief of Distress in terms of the R350, I can say that is one of the grants that have been most accessible that the government has had to roll out. But rolling out SRD R350 also must be understood that we have other grants such as the child support grant. The child support grant and other grants took us a very long time to design the accessibility and systems for people to get this money. Therefore, this Social Relief Distress which was specifically created for COVID during the period of COVID, is one of the easiest grants to apply for with less restrictions than all many other grants. The grant is targeted at the active working age population between 18 and 60.




Nalapho sifuna ukuchaza ukuthi saqala sithi sinikeza ...






 ...those who have lost their jobs first. But unfortunately for us, as the applications grew more and more, we then further realise that there are more people who are unemployed

and therefore we needed to make sure that everyone who is unemployed is able to access this SRD R350.



Icasa estimates that smartphone penetration exceeds 90% in the country. There are over 50 million smartphones in the country, compared to 400 Sassa offices and furthermore, any cellphone can be used if the applicant does not have access to their own cellphones. This is clarifying that it’s easier to apply for this money and in fact, nobody went to any office of Sassa to go and apply for this money during the lockdown, even after lockdown. In instances where applicants approved but have not received a pay date, in the majority of cases, we will require some actions by the applicant to remedy the situation. Thank you.



Ms L H ARRIES: Thank you very much, Chairperson. Minister, nobody did refer to indigent grants, we refer to indigent persons, which means poor people. We clearly understand what’s the difference between indigent grants, and SRD grants. I refer to the SRD grants. Minister, with the increased joblessness and the continued inability of the state and the private sector to create jobs in the country, there is going to be more pressure on the department to provide more social relief interventions. Have you undertaken any assessment of

how much money you will need in the next five to 10 years to deal with the deteriorating social, economic conditions in the country? If so, how much would we be spending for social relief programmes over the next 10 years and what exit plan and programme do you have in place for our people that are receiving these SRD grants? Thank you.



The MINISTER OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: Thank you very much, hon Arries. I took time to just expand more, not because I thought your question was wrong or not, because I don’t think you understand. It is just that I take it when some of these questions are asked. It is also an opportunity to clarify broadly so that the people that you even represent here, they get to hear exactly what the SRD, the indigent and all that is concerned. Recall that we said as a department, we have an opportunity of the SRD R350. We then asked the question: What will happen once the R350 ends? We then said we will pursue the extension thereof, which was extended for the first time, extended for the second time. We are now asking further extension on the basis, hon Arries, that we also indicated to you in the portfolio committee that we see this SRD grant as something that we can extend to a policy development of the basics income grant. We are very far in the development of the basic income grant. So, we think that those who have been

receiving must then continue to be assisted because the economy of the country, ... By the way, we don’t see this as something that is the only way that people can take care of themselves. That is why as the Department of Social Development, we are saying the growth of the economy of the country is something that is important. So, the people don’t have to be dependent on the R350. But even if we were to introduce the basic income grant, we’ll work together with other departments, especially those which are on the economic development, because we believe the people of South Africa will live better and will be better when the opportunities for jobs, small and medium-enterprises, and informal businesses are done.



As for the exit plan, we cannot have an exit plan for people who are really struggling. The only exit that can be given to them is to make sure that when there are jobs, they must get the jobs. However, the 10-year-plan, I think you must wait for our Manifesto. That’s where you will find out how well ... [Interjections.]



Ms E N NTLANGWINI: Oh, she didn’t have an answer. She didn’t have an answer.

The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Hon Ntlangwini, please don’t do that. Don’t do that again.



Mr D M STOCK: Thank you very much, hon House Chair, I will take the question on behalf of hon Hlongo.



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Please proceed.




Mr D M STOCK: Thank you. Thank you very much, hon Minister, for such a comprehensive response. It is actually much appreciated. During the Second Quarter of 2023 Statistics SA has actually announced a decrease of unemployment of about approximately 0,3%. Now, during that process there are many of our people that have lost jobs. Then through the government’s intervention, there are also others that have managed through a government initiative to get some jobs and so forth. Now, taking that into consideration, hon Minister. I just want to find out, in terms of the new applications for the Social Relief of Distress grant, what impact has this had on the new applications? Also, what impact does it have on people who were actually affected by the floods or who had an employment and now are unemployed as we speak now? So, what impact does it have regarding the pronouncement of Statistics SA and also

what the changing material conditions of our people on the ground? Thank you.






bengingazi ukuthi cha ngivikelekile kakhulu. Ngiyabonga kakhulu bantu baKwaZulu kumnandi ukuvikelwa.




Thank you very much, hon Stock, let me start from the point that people who apply for the R350 and do not qualify for the R350 on the basis that they have resources that are coming through their accounts cannot receive the R350. The reason why we do this is because there has to be a greater appreciation shown that the Statistics SA that is indicating some small growth in jobs. We appreciate that growth, but we also hope that that growth can be sustainable. Sometimes you think somebody has got a little bit of money coming into the account, it is either supported by the family or sometimes they have a piece job where they went to do some painting in some home and then afterwards, they don’t have anything. As long as there is money in your account above R624, which is the threshold, we unfortunately cannot give you that money.

We do understand on the other hand, that our people get monies here and there, from time to time, but as long as you apply and when we process on you, we find that you absolutely do not have anything, you qualify for the R350. The impact obviously on the R350, which maybe sometimes people can take for granted. It means a lot to our people, because they are able to travel to different places to look for money. They are able to put bread on their table, they are able to just help themselves this way or the other. But we must also consider the R350 honestly is very little money. That is why as a department we are saying, firstly, let’s make sure that its extended. Those who have been benefitting from it can continue benefitting from it. But when all is said and done, we are pursuing the basic income grant, which we hope that the people of South Africa and we are hoping that this government of the African National Congress, which is our government has taken this seriously ever since we put on the table. We will continue to pursue it.



And those who talk about affordability, we cannot afford the hunger. We cannot afford the poverty. We cannot afford people sleeping with absolutely nothing, and therefore, we would want to step up and be of assistance as much as we possibly can.

Mr B N HERRON: Thank you, House Chair and thank you, Minister. Minister, last week the Statistics SA also updated the poverty lines, and the food poverty line is now at R760 per person per month, while the lower bound poverty line is R1058 per person per month. The official position is that the SRD grant is a temporary grant due to expire on the 31 of March. While the National Development Plan commits our country to reducing them to zero the number of people living below the lower bound poverty line by 2030. We are pleased to hear that the Minister committing to a basic income grant, and we have heard the Minister say this many, many times before. Does the Minister envisage increasing the value of a basic income grant to meet the National Development Plan’s commitment of eliminating any person living below the poverty line by the lower bound poverty line by 2023? Thank you.



The MINISTER OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: Thank you very much, hon member, let me also say I thank you for also your support, and for your continued party support in terms of engagements even outside of here regarding the basic income grant. That is highly appreciated. But at the same time, the answer could easily be yes from me if it entirely depended on me and my department. We need to consistently engage because the pool from where all this is put keeps on shrinking and shrinking

all the time. However, our issue in support of what you are proposing, for instance, the National Development Plan, we are saying to South Africa, and our own government we cannot afford hunger. We cannot afford poverty. We cannot afford to have people who can’t even have the basics which many of us enjoy. While we are appreciative of the constraints of government and the constraints of budget, we know that if we can squeeze from other places which end up in many instances being money that has not the value for money, being spent somewhere else is money that is the value that is not felt by our people. So, the answer from me is yes, but at the same time I am not ignorant of the other challenges that face the country. Thank you.



Mr A M SHAIK EMAM: Thank you very much, Chairperson. Hon Minister, there is a report tabled yesterday with the

R143 billion budget deficit for the month of July. Added to that is a statement saying that the revenue collection is under decline, which simply means that social grants will not be sustainable in the long run. Minister, is talking about austerity measures, talking about cutting on expenditure right now. What is your department doing or will consider doing in working with other relevant departments to give dignity back to these so-called people by creating job opportunities or

small business opportunities so that they can be self- empowered? They can go out and get jobs, they can run small businesses and more importantly, can ... with this initiative in society they would be able to make a difference, but more importantly, as we agreed that R350 grant they cannot survive with. So, are you speaking to the relevant departments ... [Inaudible.] ...?



The MINISTER OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: Thank you very much, hon Emam. Yes, I am very conscious of the budget deficit. That’s why I referred to earlier on. Yes, I am very conscious of the revenue that is declining. I am very conscious of that. Yes, I am conscious of the austerity measures which are affecting us because we’ve been told already, we must start looking at where we can cut. But the one thing I need to put in perspective and protect is the social grants. This government of the African National Congress has paid social grants since 1994 when the grants ... By the way, when I talk about the grants, I am requesting that we don’t narrow the grants only to the R350 safety because the grants for the elderly, the grants for the disabled, the grants that are given also as child support grant and that we need to protect in the best way that we can. When all is said and done, we can see the impact of what the grants have done since 1994. When in 1994,

the grants were just for a few white people and now the grants are for everybody, irrespective of colour, race, or creed.




Yebo, ungangihlahlela amehlo yiqiniso lelo. Ukungihlahlela amehlo akuzukunceda ngalutho. Iqiniso ukuthi vele izibonelelo ngaphambi kowe-1994 zazibhadalwa njalo ngemuva kwezinyanga ezimbili.





Now grant since 1994 has been paid to every eligible grant recipient by the government of the ANC. Then I also wish to thank the hon member for the question because I know one thing for sure, he is not sitting somewhere and not doing anything with regard to job creation and all. He sends me project, which he wants the department to support, which is based on training people on small and medium enterprises and doing hair and all that. I really thank him because he always sends and is always asking us, can you please direct these people to the relevant departments and that is long-term sustainable projects. Thank you.



Question 375:



actually economic impact of the Netball World Cup is yet to be determined as we all know that this World Cup has just finished a month ago. However, from the reports provided already, the following has been some of the successes. The Netball World Cup 2023 tournament has been shortlisted for the sport business award in the best sporting event of the year 2023 category. The sport business award is an international event and the ceremony takes place on 10 November 2023 in London.


Now the Netball World Cup 2023 has created a long-term legacy for both netball and women’s sport in South Africa inspiring and introducing a new generation of fans and hopefully new participants to the sport. And quiet interesting, House Chair, the new fans are men.



Players from the SPAR Proteas Team who plied their trad, and there are others who have been contracted by professional clubs abroad. For instance, Khanyisa Chawane will be playing in Ireland from 2024. This was highlighted by the broadcast figures in the host nation which saw a massive increase in live coverage, including access for all South Africans via free-to-air television. The overall viewership figures for the

event shuttered past records with the South African audience figures alone outperforming the entire Netball World Cup 2019 combined global audience making the Netball World Cup 2023 the most watched Netball World Cup ever.



The South African audience numbers can be summarised as follows: The live match coverage on all channels was

14 million. The daily match highlight was 2,3 million. The total match coverage was 16 642 million. Now the viewers from South Africa have increased by 45% and as I have said these were men.



Now more multipurpose courts were constructed, House Chair, or refurbished during this period, which will provide more access to sporting facilities for disadvantaged communities for various sporting codes not only netball.



Netball World Cup provided global exposure to young emerging entrepreneurs like the Bloc Footwear owner which is owned by a gentleman from Diepskloof. Bloc Footwear is the one that provided the volunteers of netball sneakers.



An all-female crew was utilised by super sport to broadcast all matches internationally, which was for the first time in

our sporting broadcasting history that an all-woman crew was used.



All police liaison officers assigned to teams were females. This was the first Netball World Cup that had a dedicated volunteer cops who received accredited training and stipends, and their diligence at the event was appreciated by the World Netball Cup.


Yes, of course, there are other events that we have used over the years. We have had more than international tournaments over than 20 that we have approved. There is Africa Cricket Association T 20 that is coming in September in Benoni. There is a World Rowing Masters Regatta in September in Pretoria in Roodeplaat Dam. There is a Down Syndrome International Gymnastics World Championships that is coming in September in Pretoria. This year has been very busy for the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture.



Ms B N DLULANE: I need protection. Deputy Minister, may I ask. Sports Tourism has a significant impact on increasing a country’s tourism. How is the department work with the Tourism Department to curate experiences for sports tourism to stay longer when they visit?

Furthermore, hon Deputy Minister, what mechanism does the department has to measure the economic impact of sports tournaments? And how does the department use this data to develop strategies to increase the economic impact of sports in the country? I thank you, hon Deputy Minister.




much chairperson of the portfolio committee for this question. The Department of Sport, Arts and Culture has taken a cautious decision to use international sport events as catalysts for economic recovery, economic growth and to drive creation of jobs and employment opportunities. Whilst Sport Tourism is considered to benefit the most from sport events through hospitality due to higher demand for hotels, restaurants and other food services. It should be noted that other economic sectors such as retail, trade, logistics, transportation, events management, arts, culture, entertainments are impacted.



The department has recently signed a memorandum of understanding with the Department of Tourism to ensure that the players in the tourism industry maximise on the opportunities presented by the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture through the hosting of international and domestic sport events.

One thing that we have identified though is the country’s ability to exploit the full potential of these events is that sometimes some national federations, they submit applications for approval to these events very late and to remedy this situation, we are seeking to engage with the national federations who are often the custodians of the events to improve that to appear to the bidding timelines as outlined in the bidding and hosting of international sport events so that we can be able to market the events adequately.



One area about the economic impact of assessment conducted by some events owners and some host cities, we have recognised that the primary data on the hosting sport events of the department has included the assessment of contribution of sport, including sport tourism in the gross domestic products.


So, what we have done, we have now asked the SA Cultural Observatory, which has been only assessing arts and culture to also include sport now on this. Extending beyond sport tourism is informed by recognition that sport, recreation and leisure activities impacts on a wide range of the country’s economic sectors, including sporting ... [Inaudible.] ...




Ngiyabonga, Sihlalo.






Mr D JOSEPH: Deputy Minister, I concur that the recent successful Netball World Cup hosted by South Africa and Cape Town as the host City created the positive abita for growing our sports. Our Netball Team has made us proud not withstanding successful Netball World Cup. There are ongoing allegations of mismanagement at SA Netball, especially legal dispute between the President of Netball South Africa that he was involved. How much money was invested by government into Netball World Cup and how would the opportunity to host the World Cup increase investment in government because sports needs more money? How will you ensure that sports federations are supported to live a positive legacy behind together in netball and how will the Deputy Minister ensure that investigations on allegation is investigated? Thank you.





much for that question, hon member. Let’s remember, as I have already explained that the international events are the custodians of the federations. What then happens is that as the national department, we support national federations once

they submit the bidding and hosting. But the responsivity of that event rest on the federation itself.



Now my understanding in this is that the netball South Africa is busy with its final report and assessment so that there is a report that can be submitted to the department on the entire event. So, of course, as I have said the event just finished a month ago, we still waiting for that report that must come, which is an assessment report. I think that question, we might be able to answer it adequately once we have had that assessment report. Thank you so much.



Mr W W WESSELS: Hon Deputy Minister, I think there is no doubt that the Netball World Cup was a huge success. And you referred, hon Deputy Minister, to the department’s role in assisting federations in these events to maximise the economic impact. But I think you will agree that the fact that the tournament was only hosted in Cape Town limited or also deprived a lot of fans from watching the games but also took away from the development and facilities in other parts of the country that was still left over from this event. Why was that the case? And what will the department do towards other events that you have mentioned to ensure that country and more places geographically also benefit? Thank you.



actually a very good question. I think all of us, we agree that the Netball World Cup was a success, and we also agree that it has played a critical role in actually increasing the women’s sport in the country. Unfortunately, the format of the Netball World Cup is not up to us in South Africa how it is run. It is run as of international standards.



Now netball therefore, even the 2019 World Cup, which was held in Liverpool was played only in Liverpool and even the one before that in Australia was only played in Sydney. Unlike the other sport codes, because it is an indoor game, which is played on the arena and the games are played like three games in a day.



But the argument of your question is critical in the in the sense that maybe the international body must look at how it runs the world cup and see if it can maybe make sure that it is not only run in one place. And unfortunately, the decision was not up to us. Unlike the football soccer where at least when it comes to the country, it will be played in all the provinces. By the way, we are bidding for the Women’s Football World Cup in 2027. And when we win and not if, when we win that bidding all provinces will participate in that world cup

because that’s how football is but unlike the netball. But it is a very important question. It is something that we must take up and agree. Thank you so much.


Inkosi B N LUTHULI: Hon Deputy Minister, as a global fan more and more countries are pulling out of the hosting international sporting competitions due to the cost overweighing the revenue accomplishment during this time like 2015 there was a little bit of problem somewhere there. Then the Minister of Sport said the projected cost were more than the country’s flagging economy could afford.



Now hon Deputy Minister, how is the department justified the cost in its bid to host other sporting completions like the Fifa Women’s World Cup?




are part of the global village, and because we are part of the global village sometimes there are things that we must consider.



South Africa is a developing economy. It’s an economy that we must use all avenues to make sure that we develop. Sport in the country is one that must be exposed to the international

bodies because we want to have more athletes in the country participating in the international world. We are not going to be able to do that if we are going to shy away from hosting some of these international events. Of course, we can’t host them all. We have to pick and choose the one which is the most important ones.



The Netball World Cup was critical because it dealt with one of the most important women’s sport in the country. It also dealt with the issue of women’s sport in general in making sure that people sit up and notice that women are able to participate in sport just like any other person. So, it was critical.



Now the Commonwealth Game that you are referring to in 2015 that the government had to withdraw, you would remember they were supposed to be held in Durban and there was a discussion that the amount was too much. At the time, Durban was the City that was supposed to host and the province took that decision. Remember, national government can’t override what the host city and the host province must say and do. That’s why when you talk about an international tournament what we do in the country, which is the District Development Model plays a critical role because we must make sure that there is

alignment between the city, the province and the national government. So, if the city and the province say we don’t think we will be able to host, we could not force them. We could have taken that to another city but because the bidding system had said Durban. It didn’t say South Africa. So, we couldn’t say let’s take it out of Durban and go to Cape Town. That’s why we had to withdraw but it doesn’t take away the importance of us bidding ... [Inaudible.] ...



Question 380:


The MINISTER OF HUMAN SETTLEMENTS: House Chairperson, during the April 2022 disasters 14 449 families were affected, of these, 4 983 families were homeless, and 8 310 houses were partially damaged across 11 district municipalities. Of these,

7 200 of the 8 310 families were provided with building materials for them to repair their houses and, therefore, in terms of our records, we deem this as a completed intervention. Then across the province, we provided temporary units.


In eThekwini, which was the most highly affected municipality it proved very difficult for various reasons. We provided 350 temporary residential units which were allocated to beneficiaries, and 10 buildings were acquired or leased to

serve as transitional emergency accommodations to accommodate families who were in mass care centres. After some time, the duration of the lease that we took entered by the eThekwini Municipality and the landlords is 24 months and, in this process, we're hoping to be completing and moving people to areas in terms of where they are going to stay. To achieve a permanent solution, 13 land parcels were acquired by the municipality to settle the affected families. Development planning processes are underway and are meant to be concluded through approvals by the Municipality Planning Tribunal at the end of September 2023. Once development approval is obtained, the three spheres of the government will work together to ensure that emergency services are installed expeditiously, thus ensuring a dignified relocation for the affected families.



The decision is to ensure that families in various provinces are linked to live projects and ensure that they are part of the allocation for permanent solutions. So, we do not isolate them individually as the affected communities for the disasters and say that they will have long-term interventions. Emergency housing by its nature is to provide for emergency housing, once that then they are linked to a permanent solution. I must say, Hon members, the 2022 disasters in

KwaZulu-Natal have been a lesson for all of us in the country in dealing with climate change and disasters. Some of the lessons have led to a review of policy, including in terms of how we respond to policy and implementation of emergency housing, but again, what we want to say is that we realised that stronger collaboration by all spheres of the government, civil society and the private sector does result in better support when disasters hit in communities and, therefore, provides help to our communities. Thank you very much.



Mr M HLENGWA: Hon House Chairperson, if she's not available, may I take the follow-up question?




Ehe, ngiwuButhelezi. Ehe, ngiwuye nje. NgiwuShenge, uNgqengelele. Ehe! Ehe! Ehe! [Ubuwelewele.] Wabuza ibhasi libhaliwe?





The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Hon Hlengwa, you are left with a few seconds.



Mr M HLENGWA: Hon House Chairperson, thank you very much. Thank you, Minister, for your response, there is an urgency to

ensure that there is speed and agility in how the government responds to disaster. So, contingency planning is also important. So, considering that 13 land parcels have been identified and surveyed to ensure the suitability of buildings, as you have said. What contingencies are in place or areas that did not meet the sufficient survey criteria for building? Has a decrease in the number of houses are not favourable considering that flood victims have already been left in temporary housing units for far too long? So, what is clear outside even in this case is that as and when contingency interventions are in place, when you move into those spaces, you find that there are hurdles and other technicalities, including but not limited to the governments and co-operation constraints.



So contingency planning is important. So specifically in this case, what contingencies are in place to respond to the non- suitability of the 13 land parcels? Thank you.



Nikhala ngani? [Ubuwelewele.]





The MINISTER OF HUMAN SETTLEMENTS: Thank you very much, Hon Hlengwa, for that follow-up, I think the major issue that we, and as I said there were lessons learned, one of the issues we had a discussion with Minister, Nkadimeng, specifically because they are working towards amendment of the Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Act. We are interested in Section 68 of the Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Act so that we can amend it so that it can respond to challenges around disaster management and emergency housing because once the municipalities are holding us to ransom at times when they are supposed to process the land parcels in terms of the application and services, then they take long, and they want to do some of the consultations that they want to do. So, we do believe that that's the first thing that we must be able to deal with so that there are no issues.



Lessons learned from other countries, what they do as well is to have, for example, in areas where they are known as prone to disasters, disaster centres. So, whether we can afford that, that's what we are currently having discussions with the National Treasury to say, perhaps what we need to do in areas where there's been repeated disasters over and over again, and, therefore, you might end up not having land parcels to be

able to relocate people, have buildings that you can utilise as temporary and for emergencies when disasters happen.



So, some of the countries that we've been able to survey and learn from have been able to assist. the other issue, it's the reason why we took over the emergency housing as the national. department to be able to centralise it. We understood that that helps us to be able to respond because previously what used to happen and 2022 was one of the times where we learned, what used to happen is that we would have money sitting for disasters in the Northern Cape but you have disasters in KwaZulu-Natal, and to be able to access that money it took longer. So currently with the centralised model, where we are able to respond speedily, and we are able to assemble capacity to be able to respond to some of the issues that we are dealing with.



The National Treasury has said to us, that we must be able to find preventative measures going forward in terms of being able to respond to emergencies, it’s a bit difficult, you can only work with meteorologists to be able to predict weather patterns and where people are, but the major issue is to remove people where they're sitting, closer to river banks and where they are prone to be affected by disasters and that is

part of our Informal Settlement. Upgrading Programme. Thank you very much.



Dr M M E TLHAPE: Thank you, Hon Minister, and thanks for coming through for our people in times of distress. We hope that that public-private partnership will ensure a speedy achievement of the permanent solutions. Now, Minister, given the climate change that has become a recurring experience, what measures is your department taking to ensure that provincial departments and municipalities relocate informal settlements constructed on floodplains or disaster-prone areas to prevent other catastrophic disasters? Thank you.


The MINISTER OF HUMAN SETTLEMENTS: Thank you very much, Hon Tlhape, regarding the issue of informal settlements, we've got a programme that we call the Informal Settlement Upgrading Programme. It has got different phases. In terms of phase one, we go and provide temporary services so that people can have human rights services, and then phase two is to determine where they're sitting. When we realise that people have been sitting on land that is not suitable for human settlements, we are able to find alternative land by working together with the municipalities and provinces, and this is done through grant and planning which we call the informal settlement upgrading

grant and through that, each year we have a number of informal settlements that we are upgrading.



I think the major issue that I've been advocating is the issue that municipalities need to be able to say where people place themselves within 48 hours as required by the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act, and to be able to evict because if we can do that, we continue to have a running target and, therefore, people continue to put themselves where it's in danger. However, again, municipalities have appealed to me to speak to my colleague, Minister Didiza, so that we can amend the Promotion of Administrative Justice Act because some of the municipalities are not able to see when people put themselves within 48 hours and, therefore, by the time they want to evict is not happening. This is a conversation we will have to have with society because some of them are concerned that we will violate human rights when we evict people, especially vulnerable mothers and children, and we are saying, that people have to be able to be putting themselves where it's suitable. We have experiences where they have put themselves on the riverbank and the people that have been sitting in backyards, are complaining to say we are attending to these because they are in danger and, therefore, we are allowing them to jump the queue. So it's a complex matter, but

we believe that working together with society will be able to respond to it adequately with our programmes currently in place. So the informal settlement upgrading grant in the provinces and municipalities is one of the tools that we are using to do that. Thank you very much.



Mr L MPHITI: Thank you, House Chair, I'll be taking the question. Hon Minister, what has been clear about the KwaZulu- Natal floods that happened over a year ago is that the ANC does not care about the people of KwaZulu-Natal. The people who have been left destitute and homeless. People have still living in temporary shelters for over a year since the floods, and the ANC’s 2019 manifesto, promises to the people of South Africa to transform and promote affordable housing and decent shelter, but, Hon Minister, where is the decency? Where is the decency for these people who have been left destitute in KwaZulu-Natal? Where is the dignity when money was spent for building them housing that has not been built?



Minister, what is your plan to assist the victims of the KwaZulu-Natal floods? Noting the fact that 550 beds were procured for R28 million, what is your plan to deal with the obvious looting that has taken place in KwaZulu-Natal to deal

with the issues and to help the people? Thank you very much. [Time expired.]









 ... angisho ukuthi akukho nomndeni owodwa oshiyiwe nonganakiwe KwaZulu-Natal, yonke imindeni inikeziwe izindawo zokuhlala zesikhashana. Asikhumbule ukuthi imindeni yonke KwaZulu-Natal eyayithintekile yizikhukhula sathembisa singuHulumeni kaKhongolose ukuthi siyosiza sikhokhele izindawo abahlala kuzo zokuqala. Sabasusa emaholo sabafaka la kuthiwa ama-mass care centres, sabafaka ezindaweni zesikhashana ukuthi bahlale kuzo.



Ngaya ngiyobona la behlala khona ngathi ngifika bangitshela ukuthi, cha, Ngqongqoshe, yebo usinikezile izindawo zokuhlala kodwa sibiyelele ngoba siyahlukunyezwa, sabiyela. Uma ubheka ku-Google uma ukwazi uzobona ezinye zezimpendulo ezayabuya kubantu bethi, siyabonga ukuthi uKhongolose, uHulumeni ufikile wasilekelela wasilalela.



Okwesibili, sabuya sabathola futhi abasemaholo sakhalelwa nangabafundisi sathi ngeke silinde size sithole umhlaba ngoba

indaba yokuthola umhlaba ithatha isikhathi eside. Sahamba sathola amabhilidi. Lawa mabhilidi esawaqasha siwuHulumeni kaKhongolose sabfaka lapho baze basho ukuthi ngempela ngaze ngaya sihamba no-MEC bonke bezwelonke safika sababona laphaya behleli khona. Kuphephile kwabesifazane, kuphephile kwizingane, kunamanzi kunogesi futhi kunezindlu zangasese.

Yilapho esibabeke khona. Asibabekanga nje esitaladini. Abekho dengwane. Ukhongolose la ubabeke khona kuyizindawo eziphephile.



Ngakhoke, ngithanda ukusho, Mhlonishwa, ungathi asibanakekelanga laba bantu. KwaZulu-Natal ngihlala ngiya ngyokhuluma nemindeni ekhona laphaya ngiyobachazela ukuthi sisebenza kanjani. Into eshiwo ngeminye imindeni ithi, siyacela, Ngqongqoshe, ungenzi ukuthi abantu abasemikhukhwini baseqe thina esisemugqeni wokuthola izindlu. Yingakho sithi sibanikeza izindawo zesikhashana zokuhlala. Kodwa ukuya phambili, bazongena emugqeni nawo wonke umuntu ukuze bathole izindlu zokuthi bahlale kuzo kulezi okuthiwa ama-RDP. Ngakhoke, uHulumeni okhathalayo, uHulumeni okwazi ukunakekela abantu futhi uHulumeni olalelayo. Ngiyabonga.




Dr S S THEMBEKWAYO: Hon Chair, I will take the question. Considering the unstable weather conditions, not only in KwaZulu-Natal but in the eastern parts of the country, which can happen, what contingency plan do you have in place in case a similar natural disaster happens?



The MINISTER OF HUMAN SETTLEMENTS: Hon Member, one of the issues that we are doing is partnering with various institutions. For example, the Council of Geoscience has done a report, and a study in KwaZulu-Natal after these disasters. We are learning from those reports what becomes weather patterns because one of the issues is that you might think that this is an area that is prone to disaster and then another one arrives.



So working together with various partners, the private sector and institutions, for example, institutions of higher learning such as SA National Space Agency and others are helping us to understand the patterns. What we have tried to do currently is to say, let's understand the weather patterns, let's understand weather areas, but start working in terms of where people are vulnerable, especially those, as I’ve said, who are sitting in the river banks and all those things so that we can remove them. But in the long term, which we currently do not

have allocation of funding for, is what we would want to do what other global communities are doing, establish a centre to say, for example, if eThekwini is known to be prone to disasters year in, year out, then we establish a centre that maybe can take 200 families, and then you say this is what is your permanent response to disasters. Currently, we do not have such. It's what we hope to do and we are consistently having engagement with the National Treasury to be able to provide such because it needs funding to have such in the current format. Thank you very much, Hon member.



Question 370:


The MINISTER OF HEALTH: Thank you very much, hon Chairperson, and thanks to the hon member. Hon members and hon Van Staden, nationally as of the 29 August, which is the date of the question asked by hon Van Staden. The total number of unclaimed bodies in the state mortuaries in the forensic pathology mortuaries owned by the state 4045. This time we have the reports from all nine provinces. So, this is really a complete picture. Just in terms of the distribution hon members, the Eastern Cape had at that date 315 bodies, Free State 108, Gauteng 1049, KwaZulu-Natal 1509, Limpopo 353 and Mpumalanga 68, Northern Cape 42, North West 251, and the Western Cape 350, which brings the total to 4045.

Now, in terms of whether there is progress in dealing with this matter, from the Eastern Cape, the indications are that

51 of the total unclaimed bodies which we gave the figure earlier of 315 were ready for burial. In other words, they got the go-ahead in terms of the municipal legislation to proceed with burial of unclaimed bodies. From KwaZulu-Natal, 170 of the of the 1509 of the unclaimed bodies were ready for burial. Not all of them were going to be buried as unclaimed because some families had come forward out of this 170. From Limpopo,

27 of the 353 as of that date of the 29, were ready for a burial. From Mpumalanga, they had not received approval from the municipalities to proceed, but they were awaiting approval in terms of the applications for the 68 bodies which remained unclaimed.



In the Northern Cape, there were still also waiting for approval from the municipalities for applications for burial of unclaimed bodies out of the 42. From the North West, out of the 251, 77 of the unclaimed bodies were ready for burial.

From the Western Cape province, 14 of the unclaimed bodies which is out of a total of 350, 14 have received permission from the municipalities. Overall, it’s a mixed bag. There is some progress in provinces, but it’s still very unsatisfactory.

So, I know that for instance, in Gauteng, they were using the biometric system to try and improve in the identification of unclaimed bodies. Of course, the recent fire has exacerbated the situation in as far as Gauteng, especially in Johannesburg is concerned. So, the Health Department is working also with the SA Police Service Forensic Science Laboratory in relation to DNA testing to identify more bodies. The delays form part of the reasons why the number of unclaimed bodies is still very high. We are also working with Cogta to fast track with the municipalities. Thank you very much, hon Chair.



Mr P A VAN STADEN: Thank you House Chairperson. Hon Minister, I direct my question following an article that was published on 7 August of this year with a heading “Mortuary backlogs result in horror viewings”. According to this article, families have had to identify their loved ones in a state of decomposition. The Gauteng Health Department also announced on the 24 July this year that it has established a provincial task team to address a backlog at mortuaries due to a shortage of pathologists. I have also received information of bodies being kept at hospitals, but they have to be covered with ice packs due to the fact that there was not adequate space available in state mortuary. And also, information regarding a body that was kept for two years in a state mortuary.

Hon Minister, apart from the continued discussions between the forensic pathology services, local municipalities and the SA Police Service, and apart from the task team that was established by the Gauteng Health Department regarding the unclaimed bodies, what measures are your department putting in place to ensure that this problem does not get out of hand to a point where they will not be sufficient space available at state mortuaries across the country and to avoid situations like the ones I have mentioned today, to avoid the piling up of unclaimed bodies? Thank you, House Chair.



The MINISTER OF HEALTH: Well, thank you very much hon Chair, hon members. As I’ve indicated, maybe two key interventions. One is the question of ... well three. One is increasing capacity in terms of the DNA laboratories under the SA Police Service. We have been assured from SAPS that indeed capacity has improved. We have seen also, for instance with the recent fire, that there is a more speeded up process of DNA matching of the victims of the fire. [Interjections.]



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): Hon members. Sorry hon Minister, please continue.








The MINISTER OF HEALTH: Thanks, hon Chair. Yes, I was saying three interventions. One is working with the Police Service Forensic Laboratory site in terms of DNA. We have an assurance and we have seen signs of improvement in that regard, which will help to unlock some of the impasse. Secondly, in terms of also working with Cooperative Government and Traditional Affairs in making sure that there is more approval. But also, the use of technology in as far as fingerprint identification. Working together again with the police in terms of comparison of biometric information. Not only with the police, but also with the Department of Home Affairs.



So, we have found out that also helps. The use of biometric technology is also helping us to improve in terms of movement of the bodies. But where all these have failed - where there is no DNA match - there is no biometric - where the person is not registered either on the police system or on the Home Affairs system - we rely on the permission for what is generally called a pauper funeral. That is why we are engaging Department of Cooperative Governance and empower municipalities so that they could process these applications much quicker. Thank you very much.

Ms A GELA: Thank you very much, Chair. Chair, allow me to first say ...




... go masione ka moka mo kgweding ye ya Setemere, ...





... Happy New Year.



The follow up question, Chair. Mma Khawula will never understand it. The follow up question to the Minister; what has been the leading factors relating to bodies being unclaimed and how have these informed and improved the department strategies to ensure that all corpses are identified and claimed? Thank you very much.



The MINISTER OF HEALTH: Thank you very much Chairperson. The key factor really in terms of driving this, it’s where a patient dies in our facilities and in circumstances where when they were admitted, there were no relatives identified and there are number of factors in this regard. Including some of whom are undocumented, foreign nationals, and we still have also South African citizens who unfortunately are undocumented. So once somebody is admitted, because when they

are in critical condition, even if there is no proper information and next of kin, because those are the requirements when somebody is admitted in the health facilities, once things go wrong, where somebody’s picked up or they come on their own into a health facility in a serious condition and there is no record in terms of identification properly and also with the record of the contact details of the next of kin, that’s primarily where things go wrong.



So, as we improve, as I said, technology - especially web - some record may exist especially from Home Affairs and also from the police. Improvement in those technologies as we go into a biometric testing, this will improve in terms of our ability to track the next of kin or people who unfortunately passed away in our health facilities. Thank you, hon Chair.



Mrs M O CLARKE: Thank you, House Chairperson. With reference to the Minister’s reply to question 336 in May this year, mortuaries in all provinces except in the Free State had issues with refrigeration and space, and only mortuaries in KwaZulu-Natal and Free State were equipped with generators and fuel supplies. Given the fact that we are facing stage six loadshedding again and that it is not a problem that will disappear in the foreseeable future, how is the department

planning on addressing issues of overcrowding and defrosting of bodies within our mortuaries? Thank you.



The MINISTER OF HEALTH: Well, thank you very much to the hon member. Chair, of course the issue of power cuts does very adversely affect the functionality of state mortuaries. So, as indicated in that answer, not all are equipped because we do prioritise emergency services in the health facilities. But of course, in the majority of provinces, because they are also attached to the emergency generators in the health facilities, they do benefit. So, one way clearly, we hope that this level of loadshedding is going to be short lived.


But secondly, if the persistence continues, we will have no other alternative but also to look at supporting through the infrastructure grants which we operate nationally encouraging provinces also to include those mortuaries which are still outstanding in terms of emergency power supply for those to avoid disaster in terms of decomposition of bodies. But we also believe that with these other measures which I’ve mentioned in terms of possibility of speeded up identification using various technologies available, we should be able to improve in terms of the turnaround times. Thank you, hon Chair.

Ms L H ARRIES: Thank you very much Chairperson. I will take it. With reference to the allegations in the Thabo Bester matter, there were bodies that were stolen from mortuaries in order to cover up the alleged crimes. What measures do state mortuaries have in place to safeguard unclaimed bodies further? What is the procedure for bodies that remain unclaimed for extended period of time?



The MINISTER OF HEALTH: Thank you very much hon Chair and hon member. Indeed, this was a very isolated criminal act which, as far as I’m aware, the police have investigated and as far as I’m aware, there will be charges laid. It’s quite clear that there was collusion. There was collusion between the people looking after the mortuary, looking after their bodies and also the citizen, the member of the society who claimed a body which indeed it was a false claim. So that’s a criminal act. As they say, it takes two to tango. So, there were two parties, and of course that will emerge more clearly because the system is very clear. The procedures are very clear in terms of the proper identification documentation before a body can be claimed that there should be a proper verification.



But in terms of avoiding this prolonged period at the end, when a body is unclaimed from prolonged period, our officials

at the pathologist services have to apply. That’s why all the provinces are indicating outstanding approvals in terms of making sure that there can be approval for the burial by the state. So, when everything else has failed, that’s the route to go. Thank you very much, hon Chair.



Question 376:

The DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH: Chair, that that question will be taken by hon Deputy Minister who is in the House.



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M L D Ntombela): You may proceed, hon Deputy Minister?


The DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH: Chair, the question asked by hon Gela, the COVID-19 variant, EG. 5 has no official name as it is just one of the several circulating variants. It is not targeting elderly people. The authorities are constantly monitoring a range of respiratory viruses, including the respiratory substantial virus, SARS-CoV-2, the country’s preparedness, prevention and response regiments are enough to defend against any new variants and any other pathogens.



The department is actively engaging the World Health Organisation, WHO, the Ministerial Advisory Committee on

Covid-19 and other local scientists and clinicians. Provincial departments have been requested to remain alert to increasing testing and to continue to offer vaccines. We do give and we continue when we have this topic to remind our citizens that anyone who has signs and symptoms of COVID-19 which is usually fever, cough, sore throat, loss of taste and body aches, should test for the virus.



Those who test positive for COVID-19 should, as we did before, self-isolate and seek immediate medical attention if their symptoms become worse. Anyone who tests positive using the self-test at home must request a confirmatory test of a PCR which should then allow the isolated virus to be sequenced in the laboratory by the scientists to know which variant is actually circulating.


Anyone at high risk of a serious COVID-19 usually our senior citizens, any 60 years old, anyone with compromised immune systems or underlying conditions, including lung diseases, should consider wearing a face masks when in crowded public space. All those who are eligible for COVID-19 vaccine should fully vaccinate, including boosters and the vaccines by the way, are still very much available in our country because even

though COVID-19 has moved from being pandemic, we still have it circulating in our country in low proportions.



Vaccine doses are available and our citizens can pick and choose whether they would take the Pfizer or the J&J. Children less than 12 years with the high risk immunocompromised conditions are being vaccinated at a priority population at sentinel refer and paediatric sites. Health authorities have been cautioned to be aware of possible increases in numbers of people needing hospitalisation. The public is urged to note scientific information from official public health sources and be cautious about information circulating by individuals and organisations with no scientific authority. Thank you very much, Chair.



Ms A GELA: Thank you very much, Deputy Minister, for the response.


Afrikaans: Luister mense.




Deputy Minister, what are the latest developments in monitoring the new COVID-19 variants and their potential impact on the public health system? Thank you, Chair.


The DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH: Like I have just talked about the EG.5, on 17 of August this year, the WHO announced that a new detected variant BA.2.86 had been declared as a variant under monitoring, meaning that it has the potential to pose future health risks. By 25 August, only nine cases had been reported in five countries: Denmark, Australia, US, United Kingdom and South Africa. At the current moment it is unknown whether this BA.2.86 variant is associated with either early transmission or more severe disease, and it has not been declared a variant of interest or a variant of concern, not that a note that it has actually not been given a name because it is not really a variant that is on that category.



However, we also give therefore an advice that I have indicated before that our citizens should be cautioned that we are not out of the woods as yet in terms of COVID-19 but it is just that it has actually moved from pandemic to endemicity in our country. Thank you very much, Chair.

Mr S N SWART: House Chair, thanks to the Health Justice Initiative, the public now has access to COVID-19 vaccine contracts, the terms of some of which are deeply concerning. For example, we understand that the Pfizer contract contains none of the public interest measures contained in the United Kingdom-European Union contracts, such as access to critical test data, but indemnities and government vaccine injury funds were required. South Africa paid a staggering 33% more than the African Union price for this vaccine. Additionally, large numbers of people are suffering from severe adverse reactions to the COVID-19 vaccines, including unexpected deaths from heart attacks, mild diarrhoea, strokes, pulmonary embolism and thrombosis, to mention a few. Now that the contracts are public, will the hon Deputy Minister ensure transparency and accountability over the R14 billion spent and particularly on the contractual terms and conditions and what steps will be taken to ensure that the public is informed of and protected from serious adverse reactions and events to COVID-19 vaccines, including deaths, now and going forward? This after the Minister indicated that 3076 clinically significant adverse reactions. Thank you, House Chair.



The DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH: Chairperson, time allowing I will pick and choose from the various questions that he posed

in this platform. But maybe leaning on the one of serious adverse events. The starting point is that, when you give any drug having been passed by an authority that is authorised to look into the safety and efficacy of the drug, there will be adverse events and side effects of that type of a drug. This is because everybody will be experiencing that medication for the first time, but advised by scientists, you weigh the probabilities of the benefits versus not having them. The probability was that the vaccination was more beneficial than not to vaccinate our members. And there has been a very clear plan that for anyone who actually gets a serious adverse event, not only just for COVID-19 vaccination for any other medication that you are getting, either for the first time or as a recurrence, you need to actually contact your medical chin and they look after that.



All those who have actually had a serious adverse events have been taken through the processes and that is being actually looked into and we could furnish the report of how far that has happened and how many often on record. Now, I would not have that data of how many of our citizens did experience serious adverse events and what actually processes were taken through that. But all that is actually being taken care of.

Thank you very much.

Mrs M B HICKLIN: House Chair and Deputy Minister, given that when the world was embarking on mass COVID-19 vaccination campaigns, the South African Department of Health was missing in action until private healthcare stepped up to the plague. South Africa has developed a COVID-19 vaccine...



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M D L Ntombela): Order, hon members.




Mrs M B HICKLIN: Even today...




The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M D L Ntombela): Order, hon members, allow a member to continue.


Mrs M B HICKLIN: We were quiet when you...




The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M D L Ntombela): Hon members...




Mrs M B HICKLIN: We were quiet when you, we were quiet when...




The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M D L Ntombela): Hon members, hon Hicklin, hon Hicklin, can you take your seat please? Hon members, we are left with only a minute or two and I was planning to give you very good accolades for your behaviour, but...








Can you allow hon Hicklin to complete what she started, please? Have patience only for a minute or two.


Mrs M B HICKLIN: Thank you, House Chair. Even today the national Department of Health is missing in action when it comes to COVID-19 vaccination programme. We would like to believe that this is because there is extensive research into possible side effects being experienced by some of the vaccinated populists. My question is, is there any research being done into this phenomenon? If so, how has this affected vaccination protocols? Thank you.



The DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH: Hon Chair, if maybe I can just be assisted with the first part, I hope hon members, I lost the first part. Okay, okay, Chairperson and hon member, we have not done anything untoward scientifically when it comes to vaccination in the country, like it is done in the world. Secondly, even though the department is led by a medical doctor, Dr Joe Phaahla, we have taken it to ourselves to get advice. A Ministerial Advisory Committee is made up of

epidemiologists, virologists and bacteriologists. All those experts say what do we do in the event you have to deal with the pandemic?


We know that we also benefited all of us in the country, including Western Cape, from those specialists some of them we do not have, who came from Cuba to support us in that. So, we have no fear that what we have put in place is scientifically proven to be correct and therefore what we do and every time the President makes announcements of this and that it has been a record of proven scientific information that has been found. So, the medical team that has been behind all of us is there to actually support and lead.



I do not know whether the member is aware how many accolades we have received from the World Health Organisation. What more would you need when the World Health Organisation leading in the country, in the world is saying, we have done well, we are happy with the strides and we are happy with your doctors who actually have done so much. So, I do not know what more we can do to assist the member to understand that we have been given accolades by the World Health Organisation the way we have actually managed this pandemic, this COVID-19 and many more

others because of the science and scientists that are supporting us in that regard. Thank you very much.




Mnu M HLENGWA: Angazi ukuthi yini indaba le nto yakwaButhelezi inikitaza kangaka. Vele nje singabakwaShenge nje vele. [Ubuwelewele.] Uma uthanda ...




... I am a little Buthelezi. Dinangwe, I think we need to go back to the sense of urgency which we had when the pandemic started out. What seemingly has happened is, as though we have forgotten and from time to time that there is new information, new variants being pronounced from around the world and has got the risk of public anxiety and public concern. So, the issue I am raising with you Deputy Minister, is on the issue of continued public education on these new phenomenon and what plans the department has, working with the stakeholders to ensure that the public is continually updated and educated to understand the dynamics that may vary, considering the psychology tensions and anxieties, the country went through at the peak and height of the pandemic, including but not limited to actually the lockdown? The questions in the statement is a higher grade question. So, really Deputy Minister, the

question is fundamentally about public education as to whether what programmes are in place and who you are working with so that it is not as if I... [Time expired.]


The DEPUTY MINISTER OF HEALTH: Hon Mashasha, that question arose a week ago and two weeks ago when this variant was detected and there was consultation between our Ministerial Advisory Committee, the Minister and the WHO to say this variance for now is a variant that is to be monitored. It has not even moved to a stage of being a variant of interest where everybody wakes up and look for it and where is it is found and is far from being a variant of concern. Should we or should we not then begin to talk to the public about it? Maybe not, but what we should then do is to say, South Africans, let us improve our level of vaccinations and our boosters because we are talking about Covid-19 which has not really gone out into the sea, it is still with us. It is just that, it is not at the height it was, two years ago.



So we want to say to our South Africans we want to vaccinate or boost, but if you have these symptoms that I read, please get to a facility, even tests and if you are positive we then isolate. So, there was that debate. Should we or should we not go public on a variant which has not really reached the level

of being a variant of interest and a variant of concern? The WHO adviser said, no, they are not really having any alarm anywhere in the world. So, we are following that guide and we will then do as you wish. But we are monitoring the situation in the event there is a change of the situation. Thank you very much, Chair.



The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON (Mr M D L Ntombela): Thank you very much hon Deputy Minister. Hon members, the time allocated for questions has expired. Outstanding replies received will be printed in Hansard. I request members to stand and wait for the Chair and the maize to leave the Chamber. That concludes the business for the day and the House is adjourned.



Business for the day concluded.



The House adjourned at 18:18




No related