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Happening in Parliament this week


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Happening in Parliament this week

Happening in Parliament this week

18th September 2023


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Questions to the Deputy President and the Economics Cluster Ministers, filling of a vacancy in the Electoral Commission, a Debate on Heritage Day and the establishment of an ad hoc committee on the amendments to the General Intelligence Laws are some of the issues scheduled to wrap up the National Assembly’s (NA) third term this week.
The National Council of Provinces (NCOP) will not have a plenary this week as the House’s Whippery will undertake a working visit to the Deutscher Bundestag in Germany. Only Select Committees of the NCOP are scheduled to sit this week before the House concludes its programme of the third term with sittings next week.
The Deputy President of the Republic, Mr Paul Mashatile, will be back in the National Assembly on Friday at 10am to answer a range of questions from the Members of the House. Section 92 (2) of the Constitution stipulates that Members of the Cabinet are accountable collectively and individually to Parliament for the exercise of the powers and the performance of their functions. The procedure for putting questions to the Executive is one of the ways in which Parliament holds the Executive accountable.
On Tuesday, the NA is scheduled to consider the Portfolio Committee on Home Affairs’ report on the candidate nominated to fill a vacancy in the Electoral Commission. The sitting will also consider reports on at least four Bills: namely, the Judicial Matters Amendment Bill, the Correctional Services Amendment Bill, the Public Administration Laws General Amendment Bill and the Animals Protection Amendment Bill. The Judicial Matters Amendment Bill aims to amend numerous Acts, which are administered by the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development and are intended to address practical and technical issues of a non–contentious nature, as well as constitutional judgments. The Bill seeks to amend among others, the Magistrates’ Courts Act, 1944 by further regulating the calling of a witness by the court and use of assessors and the Administration of Estates Act, 1965, by making provision for electronic payments; provide for an affidavit by an executor; further regulate liquidation and distribution accounts.
The Public Administration Laws General Amendment Bill seeks to amend the Public Service Act 1994, Public Service Commission Act 1997 and Public Administration Management Act 2014 by inter alia providing that special service benefits to heads of department are not permissible on their dismissal and give clarity in respect of directions and recommendations made by the commission and to clarify the power of the Commission to give directions related to recruitment, transfers, promotions and dismissals. The purpose of the Animals Protection Amendment Bill is to amend the Animals Protection Act by prohibiting the sale and manufacturing of cosmetics that were tested on an animal in the Republic and to criminalise the testing of cosmetics on animals.
Wednesday’s sitting of the House is scheduled for Questions for Oral Reply with the Economics Cluster Ministers (Cluster 4) – which includes Ministers responsible for Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development; Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment; Communications and Digital Technologies; Employment and Labour; Finance; Mineral Resources and Energy and Electricity.
Thursday’s sitting of the House will, amongst others, consider the draft resolution on the establishment of an ad hoc committee on the General Intelligence Laws Amendment Bill, the request for approval of The 2003 UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) and draft notices determining the remuneration of Commissioners of the Independent Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) and Councillors of the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA). The sitting is also scheduled to hold a Heritage Day Debate under the theme: “Celebrating our cultural diversity in a democratic South Africa” before concluding its business with addressing the question of debates on reports debated in mini-plenaries.
There are 43 committees of the NA and the NCOP scheduled to sit and consider various oversight issues and Bills this week. Furthermore, the Portfolio Committee on Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development will be visiting various municipal districts in the Western Cape this week to hold public hearings on the Preservation and Development of Agricultural Land Bill.
Portfolio Committee on Water and Sanitation, Briefing by the Department of Water and Sanitation on the South African National Water Resource Infrastructure Bill SOC Limited; Briefing by the Rand Water, Magalies, Amatola and Overberg Water Boards on their Corporate Plans of the 2023/24 financial year
Standing Committee on Finance, Public hearings on the 2023 Draft Revenue Laws Amendment Bill and 2023 Draft Revenue Administration and Pension Laws Amendment Bill
Portfolio Committee on Home Affairs, Update by the Department of Home Affairs on Recommendations contained in the State Capture Report and outstanding queries raised by members of the Committee; Progress on permits without targets in the Annual Performance plan such as spousal permits
Portfolio Committee on Basic Education, Consideration and Adoption of the Basic Education Laws Amendment Bill (As Amended) [B 2B – 2022] and Committee Report; Presentation on and Updated Status Report on Examination Readiness 2023 by: Department of Basic Education; and Umalusi
Portfolio Committee on Women, Youth and Persons with Disabilities, Clause by clause deliberations on the National Council on Gender-Based Violence and Femicide Bill
Standing Committee on Public Accounts, Hearings on the unauthorised expenditures for the following departments/entities: Vote 34: Department of Minerals and Energy; Vote 40:Department of Transport; Vote 16:Department of Basic Education; Vote 20:Department of Women, Youth and Persons with Disabilities; Vote 22: Department of Correctional Services
Portfolio Committee on Public Works and Infrastructure, Briefing by the DPWI on the DPWI/PMTE human resources strategy to effectively deal with the under-capacitation of the PMTE that is needed to manage, design, and implement strategies through which the value of the large asset portfolio can be unlocked
Standing Committee on Finance, Public hearings on the 2023 Draft Rates and Monetary Amounts and Amendment of Revenue Laws Bill (2023 Draft Rates Bill), 2023 Draft Taxation Laws Amendment Bill (2023 Drat TLAB) and 2023 Draft Tax Administration Laws Bill (2023 Draft TALAB)
Portfolio Committee on Justice and Correctional Services, Briefing by the Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Justice and Correctional Services on the listing of the Information Regulator, determination of benefits and conditions of service for members of the Information Regulator South Africa; Briefing by the Parliamentary Legal Services on the referral of a finding of gross misconduct against Judge NJ Motata; Shortlisting for the South African Human Rights Commission vacancies
Joint Standing Committee on Defence, Presentation of the Military Ombud 2022/23 Annual Report; Feedback on the backlog of Military Ombud cases lodged with the Minister of Defence
Joint Standing Committee on Financial Management of Parliament, Briefing on Parliament’s performance in the first quarter of 2023/24; Update on the restoration of the buildings affected by the January 2022 fire on the precinct: briefings by the Secretary to Parliament and/or Development Bank of Southern Africa.
Select Committee on Health and Social Services, Final mandates on the Fund-Raising Amendment Bill [B29B - 2020], sec 76
Portfolio Committee on Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, Briefing by Statistics South Africa on the tabled Statistics Amendment Bill, 2020



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