June 19, 2019

You are going to have to exercise some patience if you are waiting to see the sixth parliament get on with it. The official opening is the State of the Nation Address, which falls on 20 June, and that will be the first joint sitting of the new MPs. After that the plenaries begin with debates on SONA in both Houses. But the real work of parliament, as we know, happens in the committees, which only get going on 2 July.

The Southern African Faith Communities’ Environment Institute (SAFCEI) and many civil society actors were disappointed and dismayed to hear that Gwede Mantashe was awarded the newly combined Mineral Resources and Energy Ministry.

Parliament Watch, a collective of independent civil society organisations committed to social justice, human rights and constitutional democracy, monitored the conduct and effectiveness of committees during the fifth democratic parliament over a period of three years, and came to the conclusion that committee performance left a lot to be desired.

As calls for the recall of the Public Protector intensify, her recent report on the suspended secretary of Parliament seemingly did not win her any new friends from neither the complainant, nor respondent in this case. Suspended secretary to Parliament Gengezi Mgidlana indicated in a statement that he would take the adverse findings against him in the report on review.

This is the story of one pig farm, located on the Cape west coast, which was allocated jointly to two recipients, a Mr Cloete and a Mr Sibeko. We know nothing more about them, other than that they soon fell out, at which point the then Department of Rural Development and Land Reform (DRDLR) procured a different plot, which was duly allocated to Mr Cloete. Enter a Ms Ngxumeshe with an alleged claim to that land, and apparently with a lease to support it. It gets even more complicated from this point.

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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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