Parliament committees 2019

Gaan daar nog meer as ooit gemanipuleer word in die komitee stelsel van Parlement en gaan alles nog verder uitmekaar val – veral na die waaghalsige pogings van Magashule en sy ander stalperde?   Natuurlik gaan niks skielik verander nie, Ramaphosa sal aangaan waar Zuma opgehou het.   Zuma en sy handlangers, wou net laat weet het hy (hulle) is nog daar, en almal saam hom het nog nie verdwyn nie.  Wie is al ooit vervolg uit hul geledere?   Die ANC hou dit egter alles voor dat die oponthoud is as gevolg die bedankings.  Verwagtinge van aanstellings sal nou glo 19 Junie 2019 plaasvind.

anc bedankings


The African National Congress (ANC)  in Parliament has confirmed that it will announce the new chairpersons of its portfolio committees in the National Assembly next week. Media reports claimed that the official announcement was delayed due to internal squabbles within the party.  ANC Chief Whip Pemmy Majodina has put the delay down to the recent resignations of some party members from parliament.


15 June 2019

“The reason for that is that we have experienced the resignation, and we when others are resigning-you are supposed to swear in new members. So that process has delayed us announcing the new chairpersons. But I must confirm to you that next week on the 19 June we will be announcing the new chairpersons.”

The party in Parliament says it hasn’t received any additional names of members requesting resignation from parliament. Last week a number of former cabinet ministers tendered their resignations after they didn’t get cabinet posts in the Ramaphosa administration.

The former ministers include Susan Shabangu and Thokozile Xasa. There were rumours that there might be another batch of former ministers who might be leaving. However, ANC Chief Whip Pemmy Majodina has confirmed to the SABC that no other politicians have approached the party.

Former Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant is the latest ANC MP to resign as a member of the  National Assembly. Oliphant is one of 14 former ministers from the fifth Administration who did not make it to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s sixth Administration.


5 June 2019

The National Assembly (NA) Rules Committee, which met for the first time since the establishment of the House on 22 May 2019, discussed and agreed on a range of issues related to optimal functioning of the House. In terms of the Rules of the Assembly, the Rules Committee has a crucial role in the establishment or setting up of structures of the House. The committee is chaired by the National Assembly Speaker, Ms Thandi Modise.

Amongst issues discussed were guidelines and determinations for regular items on the agenda of NA plenary sittings, such as, the sequence for party participation in oral questions sessions with the President, Deputy President and Cabinet Ministers; establishing the Subcommittee on NA Rules and establishing portfolio and standing committees.

In terms of the Assembly rules, the Speaker must, with the concurrence of the Rules Committee, establish a range of portfolio committees and assign a portfolio of government affairs to each committee, as well as determine a name and the composition in each case.

With the announcement of the reconfigured Cabinet by the President recently, the number of government portfolios have been reduced from 36 to 28. Portfolio committees will be composed of 11 Members: 6 from the ANC, 2 from the DA, 1 from the EFF and 2 from other parties. These committees will soon hold their first meetings to select their chairpersons and determine their programmes.

Proposals to establish an oversight committee on the Presidency would be scheduled for discussion at a later date.

Parliament will also determine its representation in various statutory and international bodies. These includes the Pan-African Parliament, the Inter-Parliamentary Union, the Judicial Services Commission and the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association.

Amongst the crucial committees to be established is the NA Programme Committee, which is also chaired by the NA Speaker and is scheduled to hold its first meeting on Thursday to determine the programme of the House.

The appointment of party whips was also discussed and agreed to. There would be a total of 62 whips drawn from the 400-seat NA. The African National Congress with 230 seats would have 35 whips, the Democratic Alliance with 84 seats would have 13 whips, the Economic Freedom Fighters with 44 seats would have seven whips, the Inkatha Freedom Party with 14 seats would have two whips, as would the Freedom Front Plus with 10 seats, the African Christian Democratic Party with four seats would have one whip and the smaller parties would be allocated two whips.

Whips are members of political parties selected to assist in organising party business, in keeping members informed about party and parliamentary business, ensuring members attend committee meetings and House plenary sittings and take part in debates in plenary sittings.


Thursday 13 June 2019

Internal wrangling within the ANC is seemingly stifling the appointments of parliamentary committee chairpersons and caucus whips.
ANC chief whip Pemmy Majodina was expected to announce who the party would be nominating for chairperson positions at an ANC caucus meeting on Thursday. However,  the meeting was cancelled at the last minute.   Her office gave no reason for the postponement.
But, insiders say the hold up is down to internal factional battles within the ANC.

One person familiar with deliberations told the Mail & Guardian: “From what I know, the Ace [Magashule] faction said it’s fine;   Ramaphosa can choose the executive, but then they want a say on who is deployed in Parliament.”

The delay could also be due to several former Cabinet ministers resigning as ANC MPs, with replacements having to be called in lower down on the election candidate list. In the past few weeks, 16 former ministers have resigned after not making a return to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s executive.

These include veteran minister Jeff Radebe, former Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini, former Tourism Minister Derek Hanekom, and former Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant, who resigned on Thursday.

Former Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba and former Environment Minister Nomvula Mokonyane also declined to take their seats before they were sworn in as MPs.

There’s also still question about who will be chosen as the National Assembly’s Chair of Chairs. Mokonyane was tipped by the ANC’s national executive committee to take the position.

The House Chairperson of Committees, or Chair of Chairs as it is known, is a relatively powerful position. This person oversees parliamentary committees, whose job it is to conduct oversight over the executive, government departments and institutions.

The former Chairperson, Cedric Frolick, does not appear to be under consideration after being implicated in allegedly accepting donations from Bosasa. These revelations were made by former company executive Angelo Agrizzi while testifying at the judicial commission of inquiry into state capture, chaired by .

Meanwhile, the Democratic Alliance (DA) says it’s not holding its breath on whether the ANC will offer it the chairpersonship of Parliament’s key standing committee on public accounts (Scopa).   The ANC has thus far made no indication on who will take the lead and chair parliamentary committees.   Committees have been described as the “engine room” of the legislature where the real work of crafting legislation is done.

Based on the composition of the National Assembly, MPs have decided that each portfolio committee will consist of 11 members. Each committee will be made up of six from the ANC, two from the DA, one from Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), and two members from other smaller parties.   Meanwhile, the DA says it no closer to knowing whether it will be offered the chairpersonship of the key Standing Committee on Public Accounts. Last month, the governing DA in the Western Cape Legislature offered the Scopa chairpersonship to the ANC as a gesture of goodwill.

Traditionally, Scopa — Parliament’s public spending watchdog — is offered to the official opposition party. But in recent years the ANC opted to give the position to a minor political party in the National Assembly, with the DA reciprocating in the Western Cape, until now.

The ANC in the province accepted the offer, saying it wanted to turn a new leaf in oppositional politics. “There’s been no word from the ANC yet [on that being reciprocated],” said DA Chief Whip John Steenhuisen.

“Certainly we’ve had some informal discussions with some in the ANC. And I understand there are two schools of thought. One’s saying it’s going to the EFF, which is a favourite of the Magashule faction. And another saying they should do the right thing and give it to the DA,” he said.


The ANC will in the coming days reveal the names of people to chair key portfolio committees in Parliament.

The justice committees will have to deal with the firing of former National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) senior prosecutors Nomgcobo Jiba and Lawrence Mrwebi, while the finance committees will have to conclude hearings into the collapse of Steinhoff.

The names of chairs come after President Cyril Ramaphosa announced members of his reconfigured Cabinet.

Some of the former chairpersons of committees appointed to the Cabinet include former chair of the energy committee Fikile Majola, basic education chair Nomalungelo Gina and others. Some former chairs did not return to Parliament.

ANC caucus spokesperson Nonceba Mhlauli said the names of people to head committees were undergoing a process in the party, but would be known this week.

“The ANC is in the process of finalising nominations for chairs of portfolio committees and it will be finalised by the end of the week,” said Mhlauli.

She said the announcements would also include people to be appointed chairpersons.

Former environmental affairs minister Nomvula Mokonyane declined appointment to the position of chairperson of committees in the National Assembly.

She has been deployed to Luthuli House by the ANC.

Some of the key committees include those in the justice and security cluster and economics cluster.

Chairpersons who have not returned to Parliament include former chairperson of the portfolio committee on police Francois Beukman, acting chair of the justice committee Madipoane Mothapo and home affairs committee chair Hlomani Chauke.

But committees are facing a tough task as the police committee will have to deal with the issue of the appointment of the new head of the Independent Police Investigative Directorate.

Police Minister Bheki Cele recommended to the committee not to renew the contract of former Ipid head Robert McBride, and the committee backed him.

The justice committee will have to process Ramaphosa’s request to fire Jiba and Mrwebi. The two were fired after the recommendations of the Mokgoro Inquiry.

The standing committee on finance will have to deal with the matter of Steinhoff and SAA’s financial woes.

The joint committees on finance, appropriations and public service and administration had conducted hearings on the collapse of Steinhoff leading to almost R100 billion being wiped off.

The company is expected to suffer more financial losses after the restatement of results.


South Africa – Magashule’s “coup” attempt

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