The Week Ahead: Mini-plenaries & Budget scrutiny commences
There's a full and mixed flavour to the coming week's parliamentary business.
The major points of interest will come from the Question Time session with the Executive, legislative business and mini-plenaries. There are also several high-profile meetings in the Committee corridor including Parliament’s scrutiny of the budget.
On Tuesday, the NA chamber will consider the Recognition of Customary Marriages Amendment Bill and assorted committee reports. The plenary agenda also includes routine items like Member’s statements and motions without notice.
On the following day, 6 Ministers in the Peace and Security Cluster will be probed during their Question Time session. Members of the Cabinet are accountable collectively and individually to Parliament for the exercise of their powers and the performance of their functions. Everything from specific scandals and programmes to big-picture policy to bread-and-butter issues and performance will be under the microscope.
There are four mini-plenaries scheduled on Thursday. They serve as breakaway sessions of the National Assembly and may proceed with their business irrespective of the number of members present. According to the rules, any matter may be discussed or debated in a mini-plenary session. This mechanism provides an opportunity for the House to debate a particular topic without being required to take a decision at the end of the debate.
Mini-plenary 1: Subject for discussion (Ms G K Tseke, ANC): Ensuring the right of access to water for all, and the matter of water rights to achieve long-term sustainable water security for South Africa.
Mini-plenary 2: Subject for discussion (Mr B B Nodada, DA): The systemic failures of our basic education system that contributed to a real National Senior Certificate pass rate of 44% for the 2020 academic year, and steps that need to be taken to confront these challenges in the 2021 academic year and beyond.
Mini-plenary 3: Subject for discussion (Mr T S Mpanza, ANC): The revolutionary and scientific duty of solidarity and humanity of Cuban doctors in dealing with the global pandemic.
Mini-plenary 4: Subject for discussion (Mr G G Mpumza, ANC): A developmental Local Government stimulating local economic development and jobs, providing decent services and human dignity and ensuring sound governance and financial administration.
Elsewhere, the NCOP has scheduled a sitting on Tuesday to consider the Electoral Laws Amendment Bill.
In addition, the House has arranged a two-day Committee Strategic Planning Session.
The next installment of the Women’s Charter Review Sessions will take place on Friday in Mpumalanga and the Western Cape.
It’s a busy week in the Committee corridor. Everything from detailed lawmaking, to Executive scrutiny, to important spending decisions and big-picture policy will be under the microscope. Here is a rundown of the highlights:
Monday, 1 March 2021
Ad Hoc Committee on the section 100 Intervention in the North West Province, (National Council of Provinces), [Assessment by Committee Members around the law enforcement agency meeting regarding progress reports in the North West s100 intervention and way forward], Virtual Meeting Platform, 10:00-13:00
Tuesday, 2 March 2021
Portfolio Committee on Trade and Industry, (National Assembly), [Briefing by the Minister on SONA and the Budget as it relates to the DTIC’s mandate, as well as on the Economic Recovery Plan], Virtual Meeting Platform, 07:30-12:00
Portfolio Committee on Home Affairs, (National Assembly), [Briefing by the Standing Committee on Refugees Affairs (SCRA) and the Refugees Appeals Authority of South Africa (RAASA) on their work and challenges concerning Refugees and Asylum Seekers; Adoption of outstanding minutes], Virtual Meeting Platform, 09:00-12:00
Joint Meeting: Standing Committee on Finance, Standing Committee on Appropriations, Select Committee on Finance and Select Committee on Appropriations, (National Assembly and National Council of Provinces), [Briefing by Parliamentary Budget Office (PBO) on the 2021 Budget (and FFC briefing for Finance Committees)], Virtual Meeting Platform, 09:00
Portfolio Committee on Police, (National Assembly), [Appointment of the National Forensic Oversight Ethics Board; Follow-up meeting with the DNA Board on the progress report], Virtual Meeting Platform, 09:00-13:00
Portfolio Committee on Basic Education, (National Assembly), [Consideration and Adoption of Draft Minutes and Draft Reports; Briefing on 2020 National Senior Certificate (NSC) Examinations Outcomes by: Department of Basic Education (DBE); and Council for Quality Assurance in General and Further Education and Training (Umalusi], Virtual Meeting Platform, 09:30-12:30
Portfolio Committee on Environment, Forestry and Fisheries, (National Assembly), [Adoption of minutes of the previous meeting; Briefing by DEFF on South Africa’s strategic progress in implementing the Paris Agreement; Briefing by DEFF on the implementing of Carbon Tax and Carbon Budgets in South Africa (two departments and two related approaches, how would they be integrated and work? Has there been such a combination of mitigation instruments elsewhere?], Virtual Meeting Platform, 09:00-13:00
Standing Committee on Public Accounts, (National Assembly), [Hearing on the annual report and financial statements of PRASA, as well as deviations and expansions and SIU investigations], Virtual Meeting Platform, 09:30-13:00
Portfolio Committee on Justice and Correctional Services, (National Assembly), [Briefing by SIU, NPA and Hawks on Investigations – Master’s Office, State Attorney and COVID-19], Virtual Meeting Platform, 14:00
Wednesday, 3 March 2021
Joint Meeting: Standing Committee on Finance and Select Committee on Finance, (National Assembly and National Council of Provinces), [Public hearings on the Fiscal Framework and Revenue Proposal], Virtual Meeting Platform, 09:00
Portfolio Committee on Public Works and Infrastructure, (National Assembly), [Briefing by the DPWI on progress to complete Memoranda of Understanding with provinces to ensure the expeditious opening of shelters for GBVF survivors], Virtual Meeting Platform, 09:00-12:00
Portfolio Committee on Health, (National Assembly), [Consideration and adoption of minutes; Briefing by the Free State Provincial Department of Health on health care services in relation to Covid-19 and on the Vaccine roll-out strategy], Virtual Meeting Platform, 09:00-13:00
Standing Committee on Public Accounts, (National Assembly), [Hearing on the ESKOM annual report for the financial year 2019/20, SIU Investigations and deviations, and expansions 2020/21], Virtual Meeting Platform, 09:30-13:00
Standing Committee on Public Accounts, (National Assembly), [Briefing by Special Investigating Unit on investigations that have been conducted on SAA and DENEL], Virtual Meeting Platform, 18:30-21:00
Portfolio Committee on Social Development, (National Assembly), [Briefing by the Department of Home Affairs on the implications of the Children’s Amendment Bill [B18 – 2020]], Virtual Meeting Platform, 10:00-13:00
Thursday, 4 March 2021
Powers and Privileges Committee, [Consideration and adoption of draft agenda; Consideration and adoption of draft minutes of 11 December 2020; Matters arising; Deliberations on the evidence presented on Incident of 11 July 2019], Virtual Meeting Platform, 14:00-16:00
Friday, 5 MARCH 2021
Joint Meeting: Standing Committee on Finance and Select Committee on Finance, (National Assembly and National Council of Provinces), [Responses by National Treasury on submissions receive in the Fiscal Framework and Revenue Proposal], Virtual Meeting Platform, 09:00
Standing Committee on Appropriations, (National Assembly), [Follow-up briefing by Eskom Holdings SOC Limited on the financial and operational progress since its last engagement with the Committee on 2 September 2020], Virtual Meeting Platform, 09:00-12:00
Portfolio Committee on Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation, (National Assembly), [Briefing by Water Research Commission on the assessment made on the importance and cost implications of water desalination as part of the future water supply; Consideration and adoption of minutes], Virtual Meeting Platform, 09:00-13:00
Portfolio Committee on Social Development, (National Assembly), [Briefing by the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) on updated action plan to address challenges relating to lapsing of the Temporary Disability Grants (TDGs); Briefing by SASSA and South African Post Office (SAPO) on an integrated plan to address challenges in the payment of all social grants including queue management system], Virtual Meeting Platform, 10:00-13:00
Joint Standing Committee on the Financial Management of Parliament, (National Assembly and National Council of Provinces), [Adoption of Committee minutes: 26 February 2021; Briefing by the acting Secretary to Parliament on the institution’s: risk management strategy; and the implementation of action plans to attend to concerns raised in the 2019/20 Annual Report of the Parliament of the RSA], Virtual Meeting Platform, 12:00-15:00
Committees provide a platform for the public to present views directly to MPs. Share your on the ground experience and expert information to the relevant committees. Critically, what questions should MPs pose to the Executive as they conduct their oversight work?
We have consolidated our reports on the COVID-19 related meetings here.
View the schedule page here.
*This summary is based on the schedule as it is published on Monday morning. The programme is subject to frequent updating so the link above needs to be checked daily to confirm the programme for the day.
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