June 19, 2019

The Institute for Justice and Reconciliation (IJR) and the Dullah Omar Institute (DOI) held a public meeting late in January to mobilise civil society behind a demand for accountability and oversight within parliament's admininstration in the wake of the protest suicide of senior manager Lennox Garane, who shot himself in his parliamentary office last year. The meeting, held at the offices of the IJR, was attended by the Public Service Accountability Monitor, the Parliamentary Monitoring Group as well as public policy experts and social justice activists in the field of accountability to express their serious concern about the functionality of parliament and its impact on the country’s state of governance.

The Southern African Faith Communities’ Environment Institute (SAFCEI) has expressed strong disappointment at the recent Portfolio Committee on Energy’s (PCE’s) response to public submissions on the Department of Energy’s (DoE) Integrated Resource Plan (IRP).

Disgraced Secretary to Parliament, Gengezi Mgidlana, who has spent more than a year suspended while Parliament investigates various charges against him of mismanagement and abuse of power, and who is currently the subject of a protracted disciplinary hearing, has declared himself “aggrieved” because the EFF’s Floyd Shivambu once called him “corrupt”.

The only disruption to the Committee on Public Enterprises’ vote on its Report into its 2017 Eskom Inquiry was a brief delay to hunt for a pair of missing spectacles. It is not clear whether or not they were ever recovered but apart from the odd typo requiring correction, the Report moved smoothly and speedily through the voting process.

The Portfolio Committee on Public Enterprises conducted an inquiry into governance, procurement and the financial sustainability of Eskom, as per a resolution of 21 June 2017. Because of its significance, and relevance to the public, Notes from the House publishes the Report in full below:

The Auditor-General of South Africa warned Parliament to expect an upsurge in violent crimes against members of the AG team as they traverse the country finalising local government audits.

Not much has been heard of Parliament’s “High-Level Panel on the Assessment of Key Legislation and the Acceleration of Fundamental Change” since the stylish November 2017 launch of its report – until now, that is. At last, relevant parliamentary Committees, having discussed the panel findings, are filing their reports in the House, as per procedure.

Parliament will close another four portfolio committee meetings to the public between 26 November until 4 December before the national legislature wraps up for its recess period. This follows at least two letters written to the Speaker’s office in Parliament raising concerns over closing meetings to the public.

The Minister of Energy has indicated that the hunt for shale gas is back on the agenda. In response to a question from the DA asking what was the Government’s long-term plan to curtail rampant fuel price hikes, the Minister replied: “Time has come for us to remove any regulatory impediments to exploration. Linked to this is the need to urgently unlock the potential for shale gas in our country. This has been years in the making and the regulatory uncertainty meant investors could not make decisions.”

Was that an elephant spotted lurking in the corner of the Home Affairs Committee room when the Democrat Alliance’s (DA’s) Deputy Chief Whip, Michael Waters, presented his proposed Private Member's Electoral Amendment Bill on 23 October?

About Us

Notes from the House is an independent online publication that tracks and monitors Parliament’s role in fulfilling its constitutional responsibilities to improve the lives of South African citizens. Published by Moira Levy with the support of the Claude Leon Foundation.

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