Thank you, Chairperson. We will have dinner together later and he will be able to ask me all sorts of questions, plus he can put them on the Order Paper.
The matter of monitoring and evaluation that was referred to by the hon member from Cope is something we have begun to address in the department. We must align our framework for monitoring and evaluation with the requirements emanating from the Presidency, as well as the performance requirements that come from statutes and from the Public Finance Management Act.
So, through a unit we have established, we are establishing a proper set of criteria that we will utilise in order to respond to the framework that government is currently using. I assure you that you should not worry that we are not going to monitor progress. In fact, as I have said, we are no longer going to be hoping and aspiring; we want to be performing and planning appropriately.
I hope members will pay attention to the department and ensure that it does meet the indicators and targets that it has put before you in the corporate strategy.
Members made reference through hon Shinn to the matter of the National Research Foundation and Professor Charles. We have had discussions with Ms Shinn on this matter and I really don't want to delve into it in this honourable House. We have asked the chairperson of the NRF board to undertake certain steps to repair the damage that the hon Shinn has referred to. I don't want to convert the House into a tribunal of some kind because we don't know the full story. I certainly don't. I want the orderly performance of science to proceed and our programmes to be achieved and everybody to be satisfied that they are being treated fairly and with justice in our system.
I would be the first to fight if the academic intention of one of our professionals was impacted upon by any of the science councils. If a paper that was written with content that the NRF disagreed with was being hidden in a drawer, I would quarrel. If a person had an opinion with which the NRF disagreed, and they tried to stop that opinion from being expressed, I would have a quarrel.
But, as to a disciplinary case within their human resource processes, if it harms relations, I believe the board has the capacity to address that and I have asked them to pay attention to it. If members wish to delve further, I will certainly come before the committee, as I had indicated to Dr Ngcobo, and give you any further explanation that you might want, but I really don't wish to delay the House with that particular matter.
On the question of the Joule and the hon Kalyan's comments, as the hon Kalyan stood up I said to Deputy Minister Hanekom that it had been a great debate but now we were in trouble. He said to me, no, she's going to be very positive. I said, you watch. And I was correct, as usual. [Laughter.]
Hon Kalyan, on the question of what we are doing about learners regarding maths and science, I certainly believe the hon Dunjwa referred to some of that. I know that Minister Motshekga dealt with some of that in the Basic Education debate. I am sure Minister Nzimande would also have addressed that in his budget debate. The documents of the education departments as well as the work the Deputy Minister referred to speak of what is being done.
Concerning climate change, we certainly are supporting a lot of research in the area, but I believe that there are a number of very exciting initiatives in the environment and geosciences faculties at our universities that we need to tap into. There are also institutes in our universities that have a great deal of experience in research on climate change.
I believe an alliance must be built between the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research and performing institutions, so that we make the greatest possible use of the research and activity that is coming out of all these learned bodies in the country. I don't think there is enough collaboration and we need to do more around that.
On drought-resistant crops and the impact of climate change on health, a great deal of research is being done and, again, we are working with the departments of Environment and of Health to address these areas.
The Chairperson tells me my time is up.
The Southern Africa Vulnerability Initiative continues to be funded by the Department of Health. If I had more than R5 billion, I probably would have funded it, but since I have very little money, I am afraid I can't fund everything. Thank you. [Applause.]