Supply Chain Management is an integral part of Corporate Services which renders the following services:
• Bids and Procurement Services
• Technical Services
• Logistics Management
• Asset Management
Bids and Procurement Services This section procures goods and services that the Legislature needs from external suppliers. The process of procuring is twofold: quotations for goods and services below R500 000 and bids for goods and services costing R500 000 and more.
Technical Services Technical services are responsible for the Legislature buildings and any matter pertaining to it, such as office accommodation, telephones, parking, et cetera.
Office accommodation Members will be issued with office keys and remote controls for television sets and air conditioners, where applicable. This section is also responsible for the maintenance of all offices of the KZN Legislature and the Administration Building.
Telephones Each Member has a landline telephone in his or her office. To be able to dial out, each Member must supply the Technical Manager with a four-digit PIN which will then be programmed into the telephone system. To make a call Members must dial *69 followed by the PIN and then zero (0). This should be done for every outgoing call so that it registers on the Member’s telephone account. All outgoing calls will be reflected on a statement that is printed every month.
Parking Each Member of the KZN Legislature is issued a parking bay. A Member will be given a display disc to be attached to the windscreen of a Member’s vehicle so as to be able to access the parking area.
Asset Management Asset Management is responsible for the purchasing and maintenance of furniture and equipment in the Legislature. The movement of furniture and equipment in offices may not take place without the express approval and/or noting of the Asset Controller.
Logistics Management Logistics Management is responsible for the following functions: Travel Desk, Transport, Archives, Provisioning, Registry and Stores Services.
Travel Desk This section arranges accommodation for Members during sittings or while they are away on official business. The Travel Desk is also responsible for making official flight bookings. When a Member has to travel by air on official business, an authorised request for flight arrangements must be forwarded to the Travel Desk from the Office requiring a flight booking, or the Office of the Speaker if it is an official invitation or the Committee Secretary if the business is committee related. Members and their registered dependents get 24 free single trips per year for their own use within the Republic of South Africa. The Travel Desk is also responsible for arranging overseas trips for Members.
Archives and Registry
The Archives Unit is responsible for the safekeeping of dormant and active records of the Legislature until they reach their required maturity point for disposal in compliance with the National Archives Act of 1996. Registry is also responsible for receiving, distributing and dispatching mail. It is also responsible for issuing prescribed stationery for Members. Registry also distributes telephone directories to Members.
This section is responsible for arranging business cards for Members. Members are required to forward the information they want to be printed on their business cards. The business cards of members shall bear the logo of the Legislature only and all cards shall bear similar information and be of the same quality. This section is also responsible for controlling cellular phone accounts and for providing Members with official cellular phones which are returnable upon the day one ceases to be a Member of the KZN Legislature. This section is also responsible for monitoring caterers and provisioning of meals to the public during meetings and functions outside the Legislature precinct.
Stores Management This section manages the consumables that are used on day to day running of the Legislature. They control the issuing of stock and also ensure that stock levels are kept at a required quantity.
Supply Chain Management Unit
2nd Floor: Administration Building
244 Langalibalele Street
Manager: N.P Buthelezi (Zethu)
Fax: 086 566 5818
The purpose of this unit is to provide strategic human resource management services to the Legislature.
The Human Resource Management Unit delivers on the following functional areas:
• Recruitment and selection
• Labor relations
• Performance management
• Benefit administration
• Organisational development
• Employee and Members’ wellness
• Strategic HR management
• Talent management
• Workforce planning
• Learning and development
• HR service delivery
HR Relevance to Members
The Human Resource Management Unit supports Members through the Members’ Affairs Unit. HR provides support and administrative services to Members with regard to medical aid; salaries; pension benefits; subsistence and travel allowances; telephone allowances; SARS-related queries, as well as the acquisition of laptops; iPads and cell phones. It also assists Members with study programmes organised by the Public Administration and Management Leadership Academy (Palama).
Further information will be provided during induction sessions.
HR Management Unit
Office Number 1C-11
1st Floor, Administration Building
244 Langalibalele Street
Senior Manager: Mr W N Mpondi
Office: 033 3557502
Mobile: 082 809 2583
Fax: 033 3557566
The Risk Management and Internal Audit Unit forms part of the Office of the Secretary and reports administratively to the Chief Executive Officer in order for the function to maintain its independence. It also functionally reports to the Audit Committee.
Purpose of Risk Management
The risk management component was established to perform the following functions:
• To assist in the accomplishment of strategic and operational objectives of the Legislature by facilitating early identification and management of potential risks which, should they materialise, would hinder the achievement of the stated strategic objective, and
• To perform the internal control function aimed at providing reasonable assurance regarding the economy, efficiency and effectiveness of operations, internal financial control, as well as compliance with applicable laws and regulations.
• The compliance function ensures that all applicable legislation and Standing Rules are being adhered to by the KZN Legislature.
• The three-lines-of-defence model is used which ensures that management, as the first line of defence, implements sufficient controls to address areas of risk that impact the achievement of strategic objectives. The second line of defence is risk management which facilitates the identification of risk so that remedial plans can be implemented to address the risks. The third line of defence happens when internal and external audits provide independent verification on the controls that are in place within the Legislature.
How does risk management function?
To identify potential risks that may be a threat to the achievement of the KZN Legislature’s objectives, the following activities are performed:
• Annual risk assessment workshops are facilitated during which unit managers and other representatives are required to identify risks that pertain to their respective units.
• During risk assessment workshops, besides identification of risks, risks are evaluated for significance, and thereafter action plans are developed to address those risks considered to be significant enough to jeopardise the achievement of the institution’s objectives.
• The risk management component ensures that the developed actions plans are actually implemented by having follow-up meetings with the relevant risks owners (officials responsible for addressing the particular risk).
Internal Control Function
The internal control function includes the following:
• Reviews of previous internal and external audit reports to identify any weaknesses in internal controls and facilitate discussions with management in order to address identified weaknesses;
• The internal audit component operates on a combined assurance plan that is risk based, i.e. it is based on the most recent strategic risk register of the Legislature and is designed to provide reasonable assurance on the accuracy and validity of various processes of the Legislature;
• Reviews of specific areas where an error has been identified to determine the extent of it in order to rectify such an error;
• Ad hoc audits are also performed to address areas of management concern;
• Audits which are carried out by the risk management component, the Auditor-General and the internal audit component also enable the detection of additional risks that might be missed during the risk assessment process.
Risk Management and Internal Audit Unit
Ground Floor: Administration Building
244 Langalibalele Street
Manager: Ms Rowanne Moodley
Office: 033 355 7650
Fax: 086 571 2111
Risk Officer: Mr Sikhumbuzo Buthelezi
Office: 033 355 7021
Risk Officer: Mr Musa Mkhize
Office: 033 355 7044
The Legislature has a dedicated Security Services unit charged with the safety and security of all Members of the Legislature, staff of the Legislature and property of the Legislature. For any further information please contact the Security Manager on 033 355 7600
The Chief Financial Officer (CFO) is in charge of Corporate Services which cover the following components:
• Financial Management (headed by the Finance Manager who is responsible for budgeting, accounts and expenditure)
• Supply Chain Management (headed by the Supply Chain Manager)
• Security Services (headed by the Security Manager)
• Information Technology (headed by the ICT Manager)
The CFO plays an important role in the running of the Legislature because all activities are undertaken on his recommendations, provided funds are available to meet financial commitments.
Budget of the KZN Legislature
The services rendered by the Legislature are categorised under three programmes which largely conform to the generic budget structure for all provincial legislatures, viz:
Programme 1: Administration
Programme 2: Legislative Services
Programme 3: Facilities for Members and Political Parties
Programme 1: Administration
This programme consists of four sub-programmes, namely:
• Office of the Speaker
The Office of the Speaker is responsible for policy implementation and the provision of support services to the Speaker and Deputy Speaker.
• Office of the Secretary
The Office of the Secretary manages and supports the line function components of the Legislature in achieving their goals.
• Financial Management
This sub-programme caters for the Office of the Chief Financial Officer, Internal Control and Procurement Management and is responsible for providing expertise and advice in terms of financial management, planning the departmental budget, procurement management and monitoring and evaluating expenditure and revenue collection.
• Corporate Services
This sub-programme is responsible for the provision of support services, human resource management, safety services and skills development in accordance with the Skills Development Act and ICT Services. The budget for building renovation costs and other major procurement costs is centralised under this sub-programme.
Programme 2: Legislative Services (Operational & Institutional Support)
This programme consists of seven sub-programmes and the main objectives and services of these sub-programmes are as follows:
• To provide library, research and archive services
• To provide services with regard to legislation, petitions and legislative procedure, etc.
• To facilitate public involvement in the legislative and policy formulation process of the KZN Legislature
• To consider legislation referred to the provincial Legislature by the NCOP
• The provision of secretarial services to committees of the Legislature
• Reporting, interpreting and publication of debates
Programme 3: Facilities for Members and Political Parties
This programme consists of two sub-programmes, namely Facilities and Benefits to Members and Political Support Services.
The purpose of this programme is to render administrative support services to political office-bearers and other Members of the Legislature with regard to facilities and benefits.
• Facilities and Benefits to Members This sub-programme caters for items such as telephone allowances, flights, travel and subsistence costs, stationery and other items relating activities by portfolio committees, standing committees and public participation events.
• Political Support Services
This sub-programme makes provision for constituency allowances, secretarial allowances and political party funding, with the entire budget allocated to Transfers and Subsidies to Non-Profit Institutions.
Constituency allowances are paid to political parties represented in the Legislature to set up an infrastructure for the benefit of constituents.
The amount payable per member of the KwaZulu-Natal Legislature is set at R37 576,81 per month and is paid into a political party’s bank account.
Section 116 (2) ( c) of the Constitution directs provincial Legislatures to provide for financial and administrative assistance to each political party represented in the Legislature, in proportion to its representation, to enable the party and its leader to perform their functions in the Legislature effectively.
The current payment to parties is R23 194,54 per month per unit of six members. Parties with fewer than six members qualify as a full unit.
Political Parties’ Fund
The Political Parties’ Fund is aimed at assisting political parties to carry out their constitutional mandate of advancing ideals of democracy. The allocation of money to the political parties is based on a prescribed formula –
• In part, on the system of proportionality, taking into account the relation that the number of such a party’s representatives in the provincial Legislature bears to the total number of the members in the provincial Legislature; and
• In part, on the principle of equity, which may take into account, among other factors, a fixed threshold for a minimum allocation to each of the parties represented in the provincial Legislature or a weighted scale of representation for an allocation to each of the parties participating in the provincial Legislature.
Members’ remuneration forms a direct charge on the Provincial Revenue Fund, and is therefore not included in the three budget programmes mentioned above.
The timetable below is provided by the provincial Treasury and is normally used by the Legislature as a guide for the planning and budgeting process:
Payments on SAP ERP system
In 2012 the Legislature implemented an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system replacing the BAS financial system, Persal system and Hardcat asset management system. The integrated system is responsible for all payments made by the institution, including:
• Subsistence and travel claims
• Flights and accommodation
• Allowances for official visits abroad
• Claims for parliamentary sittings and official openings
• Telephone allowances
• Constituency and secretarial allowances
• Funding for political parties
• Members’ support, e.g. laptops, pension and medical aid contributions, etc.
• Commonwealth subscriptions
• Taking the Legislature to the People initiatives
• Sector Parliaments
• Catering services for business activities
• Public hearings
• Cluster committee visits
• Official funerals
The claims listed above are regulated by the Members’ Guide; departmental policy on travel and subsistence; Department of Transport rates and tariffs; Speaker’s approvals and Political Party Fund Act.
Members of the Legislature are paid salaries and allowances out of Statutory Fund forming a direct charge from the Provincial Revenue Fund which is authorised by the Public Office Bearers’ Remuneration Act. Members are paid according to differentiated levels, namely ordinary new Members; ordinary old Members; Chairpersons of Committees; Whips of Political Parties; Chief Whip of the Legislature, etc.
Administration employees are paid according to an approved organisational structure and remuneration policy. This is controlled by the SAP system.
The Speaker and the Deputy Speaker of the Legislature are excluded from the allocation of Members Remuneration (i.e. the Statutory Fund) because they are engaged in administrative services for more than 60% of their time rather than on political matters. They are therefore paid from a normal operational budget for voted services where the Speaker serves as the MEC responsible for the Legislature, with the Secretary of the Legislature serving as the accounting officer.
The Legislature is an autonomous body and not a government department in the true sense of the word. In the absence of its own regulations, which are still in the form of a draft Bill, it complies with the relevant sections of the Public Finance Management Act regulations for government departments. The set of books are kept according to generally recognised accounting practices.
The above-mentioned responsibilities, clearly defined in the organisational structure of the Legislature, are controlled by the strategic leadership and/or key management personnel, namely the Speaker, the Secretary to the Legislature, the Chief Financial Officer and the Chief Operations Officer. They submit an annual report at the end of each year. Line managers and other staff occupying positions the structure strive to meet the strategic goals, annual operational plan (AOP), annual financial statements and all other defined business activities within the given budget of the Legislature.
Office of Chief Financial Officer
Ground Floor: Administrative Building
244 Langalibalele Street
Manager: Mr Mohlomi Ronald Nkopane
Office: 033 3557550/1
Fax: 033 3557747
Since the functions of the office which deals with the National Council of Provinces differ distinctly from those of other committees within the Legislature, and since the scope of activities performed by this office is extensive, the NCOP Administration Office will be dealt with separately.
The National Council of Provinces
The national Parliament of the Republic of South Africa consists of two Houses, namely the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces (NCOP). The NCOP replaced the now defunct Senate on 4 February 1997. According to the Constitution of the RSA, the NCOP represents the provinces to ensure that provincial interests are taken into account in the national sphere of government. It does so mainly by participating in the national legislative process, and by providing a national forum for public debate on important issues which affect the provinces. The NCOP also ensures that local government concerns are represented at the highest level.
The NCOP consists of nine provincial delegations nominated by the provincial Legislatures and a delegation from the South African Local Government Association (Salga). Each provincial delegation consists of 10 members made up of:
• Four special delegates drawn from the provincial Legislature, including the Premier of the Province or a person designated by the Premier as head of the delegation. These delegates may change from time to time, and
• Six permanent delegates.
This means that every province is equally represented in the NCOP. Political parties in each provincial legislature are entitled to be proportionally represented in the NCOP delegation of that province.
The Salga delegation from the nine provincial local government associations represents local government, but these members may not vote. A constitutional formula determines which political parties represented in each Legislature may appoint permanent and special delegates. [For additional information, please see Determination of Delegates: National Council of Provinces Act, 1998.]
Permanent Delegates Six permanent delegates are directly elected as Members of the Legislature. They are sworn in as full members of the national Parliament. Permanent delegates represent the Legislature at the NCOP for the term of Parliament. They spend the majority of their time at the NCOP in Cape Town. However, they may also participate fully in the debates of the provincial Legislature, although they may not vote when decisions are taken.
Special Delegates The four special delegates are Members of the Legislature. The role of the special delegates is to attend the various NCOP meetings in Cape Town and to debate on issues from a provincial perspective. Provincial Premiers, Members of the Executive Council (MECs) or Members of Provincial Legislatures can be appointed as special delegates. Ultimately the NCOP, through its permanent delegates, will provide provinces with a national perspective on issues, whilst special delegates will ensure that the views of provinces are taken into account at national level. Political parties (as opposed to individuals) hold seats in the NCOP. If a member of the NCOP resigns, dies or is expelled from a party, the party which holds that seat chooses another party member to take up the seat. The party’s choice has to be ratified by the relevant provincial Legislature. NCOP Office Bearers
The NCOP elects presiding officers from amongst its members – a Chairperson and two Deputy Chairpersons. These presiding officers manage the work of the NCOP and preside over debates, making sure that delegates speak freely while remaining within the Standing Rules. The permanent Deputy Chairperson is elected for five years, while provincial Premiers take turns to be rotating Deputy Chairpersons for a year. A provincial Whip organises the work of each provincial delegation. A programming Whip helps the Chief Whip to schedule the work of the NCOP.
Each provincial delegation has one vote that is cast by the head of its delegation on behalf of the province. Questions before the NCOP are decided whenever five provincial delegations cast their votes in favour of a question. However, amendments to the Constitution of the RSA require the approval of six delegations. When the NCOP votes on ordinary Bills which do not affect the provinces, each delegate has a vote, a third of delegates must be present, and the decision is taken by a majority of those present.
Law-making Role The NCOP considers, passes, amends, proposes amendments to or rejects legislation. It must consider all national Bills. It may also initiate or prepare Bills which fall under Schedule 4 of the Constitution of the RSA (matters over which national Parliament and provincial legislatures jointly have the power to make laws) and certain Bills which affect provinces. However, only the Minister of Finance may introduce a Bill that has to do with finance. Most of this law-making work is done in committees, but all Bills must be referred to a sitting of the NCOP for debate and for a vote on whether to accept or reject the Bill.
The legislative role of the NCOP occupies most of the NCOP’s time, and is the single area in which provinces are most active.
Debates and Questions Issues of provincial importance are debated in the national forum of the NCOP. Members may ask Cabinet Ministers questions which must be answered in the NCOP Chamber. The NCOP may require a member of the Cabinet, a Deputy Minister or an executive official in the national or provincial government to attend a sitting or a committee meeting. A verbatim (word-for-word) record of all debates and Questions is published in Hansard, a parliamentary publication.
Committees The NCOP committees are called select committees. One would find, for example, a Select Committee on Housing; a Select Committee on Public Works or a Select Committee on Transport. Each committee shadows the work of some government departments or debates on Bills, and organises public hearings if an issue is deemed to be of great public interest. Committees may summon any person to give evidence or to produce documents, and they may call any person or institution to report to them. Once a Bill has been debated by a committee, it is submitted to the NCOP for a vote.
Oversight of the Executive
As a collective representative of the provinces, the NCOP also has oversight of the executive arm of government.
• In certain situations the national executive arm (Cabinet) may intervene in the affairs of a province, and a provincial executive council may intervene in the affairs of a local authority. Interventions like these must be approved by the NCOP, and they must be regularly reviewed by the NCOP.
• Any decision by the national government to stop the transfer of funds to a province must be approved by both Houses of Parliament.
• Provinces have certain executive powers under the Constitution, as long as they have the capacity to do what needs to be done. The NCOP must resolve any dispute between national and provincial government over the capacity of a province to do this work.
• Both Houses of Parliament must approve the declaration of a state of national defence.
At the beginning of each year, the Minister of Finance tables the Budget. There are two Budget Bills: one that divides the money up between national, provincial and local government (called the Division of Revenue Bill) and another Bill which states how the national government will spend its money. The NCOP debates the Budget and votes on it, and it must be involved in the final decision about the division of revenue.
NCOP: Legislative Process
Bills that are passed by the National Assembly must also be passed by the NCOP before they can become Acts (in other words, before they can become law). Legislation may be tabled in either House – the National Assembly or the NCOP – and will then be considered by the other remaining House afterwards.
Section 74 legislation provides for constitutional amendments, and provinces are required to submit negotiating and final voting mandates to the NCOP.
Section 75 legislation, or legislation falling under the competency of national government, does not require these mandates, as voting is conducted on a party basis.
Legislation that falls under the competency of both national and provincial government, referred to as Section 76 legislation [See Schedule 4 of the Constitution of the RSA], follows the procedure of the six-week cycle outlined below. This legislation impacts on provinces, and therefore needs negotiating and voting mandates from provincial legislatures. The mandating procedure that must be followed by the provinces is determined by the Mandating Procedures of Provinces Act, Act No 52 of 2008.
Provincial NCOP Administration Office
Staff members in the Provincial NCOP Administration Offices are responsible for the overall management of NCOP business in the Legislature. There is an office in the KZN Legislature in Pietermaritzburg, as well as a liaison office in Cape Town to provide logistical and administrative support to the permanent and special delegates in Cape Town, as well as to the Speaker, Whips and chairpersons of portfolio committees to ensure, firstly, that the Legislature meets all its legislative requirements on NCOP matters; secondly, that the consideration of national legislation is within the timeframes of the six-week cycle and thirdly, that Members participate fully in the NCOP programme.
The Six-Week Cycle
Prior to the beginning of the NCOP cycle, the provincial NCOP Administration Unit refers the Bill (as introduced in the NCOP) to the relevant MEC and chairperson of the portfolio committee.
Dates of portfolio committee meetings to discuss the Bill are decided on, taking into account the deadlines set by the relevant NCOP Select Committee for negotiating and voting mandates, dates of the NCOP select committee meetings and the plenary, in conjunction with the provincial Legislature Calendar.
Week 1: Bill tabled in NCOP
The relevant NCOP select committee at Parliament in Cape Town is briefed on the Bill by the department which initiated the Bill. Special delegates from provincial Legislatures also attend the briefing.
Weeks 2 and 3: Bill considered in Provinces
• Provincial NCOP delegates and permanent delegates return to their provinces to brief the relevant portfolio committee.
• Committees can hold public hearings during this period to obtain public input on the Bill.
• Provincial portfolio committee meets to discuss the Bill and to prepare a negotiating mandate. This reflects the committee’s position on the Bill, along with suggested amendments.
Week 4: Back to NCOP
• Provincial NCOP delegates from all nine provinces travel to Cape Town to negotiate on the Bill, in accordance with their mandates.
Week 5: Final Mandates
• Delegates report back to their provinces on the outcome of the negotiations, and provinces prepare a voting mandate. This reflects whether provinces will vote for or against the Bill, as amended.
• The provincial portfolio committee must consider amendments, if any, adopted by the select committee. They must approve or reject them and make a recommendation to the House for approval and conferral of a final mandate.
Week 6: Bill voted on in NCOP Plenary
• The NCOP meets in plenary and provincial delegates vote on the Bill, in accordance with their mandates.
• Scenario A: The Bill is first tabled in and passed by the National Assembly:
If the NCOP passes the Bill without amendments, the Bill goes to the President for his approval and signature and becomes law. If the NCOP rejects or amends the Bill, it goes back to the National Assembly for its consideration. If the National Assembly accepts the amendments, the Bill goes to the President for his approval and signature. If the National Assembly rejects the amendments, the Bill goes through a mediation process. If this fails, the National Assembly requires a two-thirds majority vote to override the NCOP amendments.
• Scenario B: The Bill is first tabled in and passed by the NCOP: The Bill is referred to the National Assembly for its consideration. If the National Assembly amends the Bill, the amended version must be approved by the NCOP. If the Bill is passed, it is sent to the President for signature. If the National Assembly rejects the Bill, or if the NCOP rejects amendments to the Bill, it is referred to mediation, as above.
The NCOP introduced a period in the parliamentary calendar which sets aside certain weeks for Members to visit their respective provinces to conduct briefings on Bills that will require provincial mandates, and to carry out oversight work where issues affecting the province can be raised and the national perspective put forward.
Taking Parliament to the People
The NCOP initiated a programme called Taking Parliament to the People in 2002. Each province takes a turn to host the NCOP and a programme is developed to include meetings with various sectors of the public, e.g. farmers and business people. Site visits are conducted to various community structures, e.g. schools, clinics, etc. In addition, a formal sitting of the NCOP is held on the final day of the programme when the President gives an address to the House.
The processes and the programmes of the NCOP as described above are comprehensively coordinated and facilitated by the NCOP Administration Unit.
This support includes all travel arrangements for special delegates and permanent delegates, where necessary, when attending meetings, plenaries, provincial weeks and Taking Parliament to the People initiatives. Staff members also ensure that copies of Bills, briefing documents, minutes and programmes of the NCOP’s select committees and any amendments to Bills are relayed to the Speaker, Whips, chairpersons of portfolio committees and all other stakeholders as the process of the cycle unfolds.
Staff members also ensure that the province’s negotiating and final voting mandates are drafted correctly and in accordance with the requirements of the NCOP, and forwarded within the timeframes set by the select committee for consideration and for voting on in plenary.
NCOP Administration Office
1st Floor: Administrative Building
244 Langalibalele Street
Manager: Mrs Margaret Clinton-Parker
Telephone: 033 3557745
Fax: 033 3557750
1. What are Committees?
Committees are often called the “engine rooms’ of Parliaments and Legislatures. This is because they are the structures in which the bulk of parliamentary or legislative business is taken care of. Parliament/Legislatures would never be able to function properly if all deliberations and oversight work were to be conducted in the House as a first instance, as there are too many issues to be discussed by too many people. It is therefore necessary for public representatives to form smaller and more manageable groups where they can seriously deliberate on legislation, service delivery performance, budget performance and related matters.
As the most superior provincial legislative body in the Province of KwaZulu-Natal, the KZN Legislature may choose to refer or commit some of its business – proposed legislation, budget estimates, special investigations, et cetera – to a more versatile and practical forum to thoroughly deal with it. In this regard public hearings, which are conducted by committees, provide an important opportunity for interest groups, individuals and organisations to express their opinions and to participate in formulating public policy. At the end of their deliberations, committee members report their findings and recommendations to the House for its consideration and/or approval.
2. Types of Committees
There are mainly four types of committees, namely:
• Standing committees
• Portfolio committees
• Ad hoc committees
• Committees on internal arrangements
* Kindly refer to Standing Rule 122 and Standing Rules 148 to 171 of the Standing Rules of the KZN Legislature for more information on Committees.
2.1 Standing Committees
Standing committees do not have a corresponding portfolio (government department) over which they perform oversight. They deal mainly with cross-cutting matters, and the following committees fit into this category, inter alia:
• The Standing Committee on Public Accounts
• The Standing Committee on Private Members’ Legislative Proposals and Petitions
• The Standing Committee on the Quality of Life and Status of Women, Children, Youth and Disabled Persons
2.2 Portfolio Committees
Portfolio committees perform oversight over their respective departments (portfolios). For example, the Portfolio Committee on Education performs oversight over the functioning of the Department of Education; the Portfolio Committee on Sport and Recreation performs oversight over the functioning of the Department of Sport and Recreation, and so on.
These committees deal with departmental policy, Bills emanating from those departments and public hearings pertaining to Bills which had been initiated by these departments. Furthermore, committees have to scrutinise departmental budgets, expenditure and service-delivery performance in order to ensure that the lives of the citizens of the province are improved.
2.3 Ad Hoc Committees
Ad hoc committees, unlike portfolio committees which last for the duration of the Legislature, are established to deal with specific issues. Once those issues have been dealt with and finalised, ad hoc committees are disestablished or dissolved.
Any committee of the Legislature is empowered to establish its own sub-committee/s.
2.4 Management Committees
The following is an overview of the political management committees of the KZN Legislature:
Management Committee on Rules Speaker
Management Committee on Programming Speaker
Committee of Chairpersons Chairperson of Committees
Whips’ Forum Chief Whip of the Legislature
Standing Committee on Discipline Deputy Speaker
Stacov * Members elect chairperson from one of the committee members
2.4.1 Management Committee on Rules
In terms of the Standing Rules of the KZN Legislature, the Management Committee on Rules must be appointed with the Speaker as chairperson. If the Speaker is unable to be present at a meeting, the Deputy Speaker shall act as the chairperson at that meeting.
The function of the committee is to compile a set of Standing Rules to govern proceedings of the Legislature. The committee must from time to time review and possibly revise those Standing Rules, where necessary. Thereafter the committee has to report back to the House. Members have the opportunity of discussing and formally adopting these Standing Rules. Subsequent changes to the Standing Rules are also dealt with by this committee. The committee considers questions relating to the Standing Rules, practices and procedures of the House, as well as matters relating to staff members which are submitted by the Speaker. It also falls within the competence of this committee to deal with legislation relating to the powers and privileges of members of the Legislature, as well as the functioning and powers of standing committees.
* Kindly refer to Standing Rules 148 to 151 of the Standing Rules of the KZN Legislature for more information on the Management Committee on Rules.
2.4.2 Management Committee on Programming
This committee, also chaired by the Speaker, is responsible for ensuring that there is a programme for the Legislature. This includes dates of committee meetings, dates of legislature sittings, dates of sector parliaments, workshops, members’ training courses, et cetera.
The Speaker, as the Chairperson of the Management Committee on Programming, authorises special requests for extra slots or visits that the committees may request from time to time.
* Kindly refer to Standing Rules 152 to 155 of the Standing Rules of the KZN Legislature for more information on the Programme Committee.
2.4.3 Committee of Chairpersons
This committee comprises chairpersons of all committees, except management committees. It is chaired by the Chairperson of Committees. Its purpose is to ensure that the chairpersons of portfolio and standing committees are performing their functions. Part of the duties of the committee is to ensure that systems allowing for proper oversight works are put in place. The Committee of Chairpersons must also develop a five-year international study tour programme to be adopted by the Management Committee on Programming.
* Kindly refer to Standing Rules 162 to 165 of the Standing Rules of the KZN Legislature for more information on the Committee of Chairperson.
2.4.4 Whips’ Forum
The Whips’ Forum is responsible for drafting the programmes of Legislature sittings. This information is contained in the Order Paper. The Chief Whip consults with Whips from other parties and draws up a programme. Issues regarding Members’ welfare and empowerment can be raised with this structure and will be referred to the relevant committees for decision.
The Management Committee on Programming has the ultimate authority over the programme of the Legislature.
* Kindly refer to 166 to 171 of the Standing Rules of the KZN Legislature for more information on the Office of the Chief Whip and the Whips’ Forum.
2.4.5 Standing Committee on Discipline
The Standing Rules provide for the establishment of a Standing Committee on Discipline consisting of the Deputy Speaker, who shall be the ex officio chairperson of the committee; the Chairperson of Committees, the Chief Whip of the Legislature and seven other Whips, as per the proportional representation of parties in the House.
At the request of the Speaker, the committee shall investigate and advise him/her on alleged infringements by Members of the Legislature which do not involve the privileges or proceedings of the House, the Legislature or a committee of the House. Having received information on any such alleged infringements, the Speaker requests the Standing Committee on Discipline to investigate the matter and report back. The committee then proceeds to set up meetings to hear evidence from the various parties involved. Once this process has been completed, the committee drafts a report which it presents to the Speaker.
3. Powers of Committees
Committees exercise those powers which the Constitution of the RSA, 1996, Act No 108 of 1996, or the Standing Rules of the KZN Legislature assign to the Legislature or to them expressly. The following sections in the Constitution are of particular relevance to the functioning of committees:
Section 114 provides for the following:
• powers to consider, pass, amend or reject a Bill
• powers to initiate legislation, excluding money Bills
• openness of proceedings and the facilitation of public involvement, as well as ensuring that all provincial executive organs of state are accountable to the Legislature;
Section 115 empowers committees to summon any person to appear before them in order to give information or to provide documentation;
Section 117 ensures freedom of speech to Members in that they cannot be prosecuted or sued for anything they say during committee meetings. This is called “parliamentary privilege”. (Please note: This does not give a Member the right to say things which he/she knows not to be true, as the Standing Rules do not allow for any Member to deliberately mislead the Legislature), and
Section 118 calls on the Legislature to facilitate public involvement and for openness of proceedings.
From the above, it should be clear that committees are generally held for the following purposes:
• To oversee the implementation of government policies and procedures
• To oversee and monitor financial expenditure and service delivery by government departments and state funded entities
• To ensure the smooth functioning of the House (Management Committee on Rules, Standing Committee on Discipline, Whips’ Forum, et cetera)
• To examine specific areas of public life or matters of current public interest
• To consider legislation, including private Members’ proposals
4. Specific Functions of Committees
In the previous term (4th term or Fourth Legislature) committees were “clustered” in such a way that membership of existing committee clusters never overlaps. The clusters are as follows:
Finance Standing Committee on Public Accounts Premier and Royal Household Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Public Works Human Settlements Economic Development and Tourism Community Safety and Liaison Transport
Social Support Cluster
Agriculture and Environmental Affairs Arts and Culture Sport and Recreation Quality of Life and Status of Women, Children, Youth, People with Disabilities and the Senior Citizens Social Development Health Education Private Members’ Legislative Proposals, Public Participation and Petitions
In pursuance of the duties imposed on them by the Legislature, committees should –
• Meet once a month to consider the budget, expenditure patterns and general service delivery of the department over which they perform oversight;
• Call the MEC and accounting officer of the department to account on expenditure and any actions or inactions by the department;
• Establish sub-committees to expedite certain matters which the full committee cannot adequately deal with in a meeting;
• Undertake in situ inspections of various departmental projects;
• Monitor expenditure trends to ascertain whether they are in line with the strategic plan of the department (This would require that the expenditure report is weighed against the service-delivery improvement programmes);
• Monitor the implementation of any Bills that have been passed;
• Consider the annual report of the department in comparison with the Auditor-General’s part of the report;
• Follow up on any matters which the Standing Committee on Public Accounts may refer to it;
• Follow up on all issues arising out of the budget hearings;
• Follow up on issues arising out of sector parliaments that have a bearing on the functions of such portfolio committee, and
• Follow up on issues raised by the public during public interactions.
4.1 Instruments for Oversight
Whilst the Sector Oversight Model (SOM) represents the paradigm within which oversight work is performed, the following documents are some of the documents that provide crucial information:
• The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa
• The President’s State of the Nation address (national priorities)
• The Premier’s State of the Province address (provincial priorities)
• Legislative mandate of a department (Acts administered by a department)
• Strategic plan of a department (departmental priorities)
• Annual Performance Plan of a department
• Departmental budget (Budget Statement and Appropriation Act)
• Public Finance Management Act (PFMA)
5. Function of the Office of the Chairperson of Committees
The Office of the Chairperson of Committees comprises both the Chairperson of Committees and the Deputy Chairperson of Committees. This is a political office in charge of the political machinery of the committees of the Legislature.
* Kindly refer to Rule 15 of the Standing Rules of the KZN Legislature for more information on the election of the Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson of Committees.
5.1 Role and Functions of Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson of Committees
Standing Rules 16 and 17 of the Standing Rules of the KZN Legislature set out the role and functions of the Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson of Committees as follows:
16. Role and functions of Chairperson of Committees
The Chairperson of Committees –
(a) is the chairperson of the Committee of Chairpersons established under Rule 162;
(b) must –
(i) co-ordinate the activities of committees and the scheduling of committee meetings;
(ii) ensure that –
(aa) business plans for all portfolio and standing committees are adopted and implemented;
(bb) budgets are compiled for all committees; and
(cc) NCOP business is dealt with speedily and according to time frames;
(iii) provide guidance and advice to chairpersons of portfolio and standing committees pertaining to the Standing Rules and to procedures and functions;
(iv) facilitate capacity building of chairpersons and committee members;
(v) ensure that committees –
(aa) function effectively; and
(bb) are provided with effective infrastructural and administrative support systems;
(vi) monitor and report on the performance of the parliamentary liaison officers; and
(vii) preside over the House in the absence of the Speaker and the Deputy Speaker and over meetings of the House in Committee.
17. Role and function of Deputy Chairperson of Committees
The Deputy Chairperson of Committees must –
(a) assist the Chairperson of Committees in the performance of his or her functions;
(b) preside over the House whenever necessary;
(c) act as the Chairperson of Committees when he or she is absent or unable to perform his or her functions and when the position of the Chairperson of Committees is vacant; and
(d) perform such functions and tasks as may be assigned to him or her by resolution of the House.
5.2 The Office of the Chairperson of Committees performs the following functions:
In the absence of the Speaker and Deputy Speaker, the Chairperson of Committees presides over the sittings of the Legislature;
The Chairperson of Committees also presides over the Committee of the House (Committee of Supply) which considers the budget allocation before it is passed by the Legislature.
The day-to-day activities of the Chairperson of Committees are to co-ordinate activities of committees (oversight meetings, strategic oversight interventions, planning and implementation of committee plans, et cetera).
In line with the programming functions, the Chairperson of Committees has to attend meetings in Cape Town where all provincial programmes are dealt with and aligned with the national parliamentary programme.
The Office of the Chairperson of Committees plays an oversight role over the performance of all chairpersons of committees, the performance of committees and the performance of parliamentary liaison officers. This includes capacity building, guidance and advice to chairpersons and committees of the Legislature.
The Chairperson of Committees is also the chairperson of the Committee of Chairpersons.
The Office of the Chairperson of Committees, through specific functions assigned to it, plays a central role in terms of public participation. Reports are processed through the Legislature and the Executive Council. This office is responsible for co-ordinating feedback sessions with members of the public.
6. How do Citizens play a Role in Committees?
The committees of the Legislature are obliged by the Constitution of the RSA to hold their meetings in an open and transparent manner (See section 118). As such, all committee meetings are open to the public. However, this does not mean that a member of the public can interject during meetings and make his/her input. There is a process which needs to be followed in order for public inputs to be heard. Where a member of the public wishes to raise an issue of concern with a committee of the Legislature, the member in question would either have to contact the chairperson of the relevant committee directly, or work through the committee secretary and, in writing, indicate a request to make an input. The chairperson would make a decision or would consult and then place the matter on the agenda.
The member of the public would then be advised of the decision to allow him/her to address the committee. Each committee has a committee secretary or committee co-ordinator assigned to it to lend secretarial and/or logistical support.
Other methods of participation in committee activities are as follows:
• Writing to the committee and making a written representation;
• Making oral inputs on Bills during public hearings, or
• Making use of the radio programme Ukhozi FM to interact with the chairperson during a phone-in opportunity.
7. Reporting Responsibilities of Committees
Committees, by their very nature, are sub-committees of the Legislature. They exist to serve the interests of the Legislature and whatever work they undertake is on behalf of the Legislature.
It is for that reason that the Standing Rules require committees to report on their activities. Committee members are also expected to report on:
• Activities attended on behalf of the committee, and
• Issues that may have been brought to a Member and which fall within the ambit of a specific committee.
8. Multi-party Oversight Delegation Programme
There is a programme which is part of the Legislature’s Taking the Legislature to the People initiative and which is run by the Chairperson of Committees. This programme gives citizens of the province an opportunity to voice their concerns regarding service delivery issues with the Legislature and MECs then have to respond to those issues.
8.1 Taking the Legislature to the People – Multi-party Oversight Committee
Section 118 of the Constitution of the RSA calls on provincial Legislatures to facilitate public involvement in legislative and other processes of Legislatures and their committees. It further calls on Legislatures to conduct their business in an open manner, and to hold their sittings and those of their committees in public.
In line with the above mandate, the KwaZulu-Natal Legislature adopted a programme which would enable the Legislature to extend its sittings to local areas in order to facilitate access by the citizens of the province to the Legislature.
8.1.1 Recipient Municipal District
The Legislature designates a district as its destination of choice for any of the Taking the Legislature to the People initiatives which are scheduled to take place twice a year. These initiatives are aimed at ensuring that citizens of the province are able to interact directly with their elected representatives, as well as exposing citizens to the processes of the Legislature.
8.1.2 Involvement of Legislature Committees
The effectiveness of this initiative lies in holding these activities in areas where the people live. As a policy directive, this initiative is always preceded by the multi-party committee or any officially appointed structure of the Legislature which comprises representatives from various portfolio committees and all parties represented in the Legislature.
The committee or delegation, comprising members from all political parties represented in the Legislature and led by the Chairperson of Committees, mainly gives the communities an opportunity to address Members on socio-economic or socio-political issues which fall within the service-delivery areas of national, provincial or local government or any public institution or parastatal.
This is an opportunity where members of the public get to speak and where politicians get to listen. From there the Legislature will follow up on any service delivery issue which is meant to be undertaken by any sphere of government. Departments, the Legislature, municipalities, parastatals and public entities are not allowed to speak on issues of service delivery at this point, and for one simple reason: This is the stage where members of the public get to call on all of these structures to review their effectiveness and assist them (the structures) by alerting them to investigate areas where they may need to prioritise their budgets for the ensuing or future financial year. However, when the sitting of the Legislature takes place, MECs are given an opportunity to report on their service-delivery plans or indicate the direction which they will take in reaction to the issues raised by the public.
8.1.4 Plan for the District
A specified number of days are set aside in the Legislature’s calendar for cluster visits to certain areas within an identified district. During these days all local municipalities falling within that district or, alternatively, priority areas for that district are visited.
8.1.5 Role of District Municipalities
In recognition of the constitutional obligation placed on the three spheres of government to function in a co-operative manner, the Legislature’s administrative team will typically meet with the district municipality (comprising representation of all local municipalities within that particular district) to brief them on how the process will unfold, secure the buy-in by district and local municipalities, and invite them to be part of the public meetings. Among the areas of co-operation requested from the district and local municipalities are:
i) The identification of any additional venue or inputs on venues that can be used for these meetings in each area. (The Legislature also takes into consideration the requests from members of the public for committees to visit them when identifying the venues);
ii) Correspondence alerting local leadership structures, e.g. councilors and amakhosi, of the pending visit and its purpose, as outlined in the concept document;
iii) The use of local structures to ensure public awareness of the initiative as a supplement to the publicity programme of the Legislature;
iv) Availing services of some municipal staff members to work closely with the team from the Legislature during these meetings, and
v) The provision of a list of local service providers in each area who will be in a position to provide, inter alia, the following services:
b. Sound system
The purpose behind the municipality submitting a list of service providers is for the Legislature to contribute to the economic activity of the area in line with its BEE and procurement policies. However, the Legislature is guided in its appointment of service providers by whether those service providers have been registered in the provincial or Legislature’s database of service providers.
8.2 Findings Three days after the last public meeting, at the very latest, all the findings of the public interaction sessions are compiled in a report which is circulated to municipalities, MECs and the Legislature.
9. International Study Tours
This programme is governed by the Legislature’s policy on study tours. Its main aim is to ensure that there is an exchange of information and experiences between Members of Legislatures and their counterparts in other countries. It is informed by learning opportunities and the Research, Information and Library Services Unit of the Legislature undertakes research to ensure that a recommended country can offer something to the Legislature by way of information-sharing purposes, possibly something which can be implemented by the province. According to this policy, each committee is entitled to one study tour during a five-year term. There are conditions attached to this policy which deal with the suitability of a Member to participate in a committee study tour. These include, inter alia, the regular attendance of committee meetings and membership to the committee.
During the previous term, a number of countries were visited, not only by committees, but also by Members of the Executive Council of KwaZulu-Natal, committees from the other eight provincial Legislatures and national Parliament, as well as the members of Cabinet and members of the Executive Councils from other provinces. Committees are encouraged to influence joint study tours with their counterparts in other Legislatures, as this would facilitate information sharing among various legislatures.
Directorate of Committees
1st Floor: Administration Building
244 Langalibalele Street
Manager: Mr Zethembiso Nzuza
Office: 033 3557707
Fax: 033 3557681
List of Committees, Contact Persons and Contact Information
Public Committee on Finance Z Cele 3557098
Public Committee on Economic Development and Tourism N Dimba 3557081
Standing Committee on Public Accounts B Goniwe 3557624
Portfolio Committee on the Premier and Royal Household N F Madide 3557746
Portfolio Committee on Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Z Molefe 3557467
Portfolio Committee on Public Works N Gasa 3557034
Portfolio Committee on Human Settlements S Sibisi 3557718
Public Committee on Community Safety and Liaison G Dube 3557446
Public Committee on Transport L Dube 3557010
Standing Committee on Discipline S Engelbrecht 3557071
SOCIAL SUPPORT CLUSTER
Portfolio Committee on Arts and Culture M Madondo 3557608
Portfolio Committee on Sport and Recreation X C Ntsele 3557678
Standing Committee on the Quality of Life and Status of Women, Children, Youth, People with Disabilities and the Senior Citizens N P Sikhakhane 3557719
Portfolio Committee on Social Development N Mazibuko 3557651
Portfolio Committee on Health G Reddy 3557575
Portfolio Committee on Agriculture K Dlamini 3557582
Portfolio Committee on Environmental Affairs T Magwaza 3557048
Portfolio Committee on Education K P Mkhwanazi 3557581
Standing Committee on Private Members’ Legislative Proposals, Public Participation and Petitions S Hlatshwako 3557537
Management Committee on Rules L Zondi 3557478
Management Committee on Programming S Mkhwanazi 3557466
Whips’ Forum P S Tembe 3557659
Committee of Chairpersons D Ngubane 3557555
Legal Services consists of a team of legal advisors who render expert legal advice to the KZN Legislature.
The core functions of the unit are: • To provide legal advice and support services to the Office of the Speaker, the Office of the Secretary, all office bearers, all committees of the Legislature (including management, portfolio and standing committees) and other units within the Legislature; and • To render legislative drafting services.
The purpose of the unit is to support and enable the Legislature and its components to comply with their constitutional and other legal obligations, more particularly to maintain oversight of the exercise of provincial executive authority and provincial organs of state, to hold provincial executive organs of state accountable to it and to exercise its legislative authority (law-making).
In addition, the Legislature – as an organ of state – must ensure compliance with all relevant legislation and the law in general in its day-to-day operations. The Legal Services Unit renders assistance and legal advice in this regard, which includes advice on compliance with the regulatory statutory framework and the drafting, vetting and interpretation of contracts and policies. The unit assists in the management and conducting of litigation by and against the Legislature. The unit also assists the Legislature, where required, in fulfilling its duties under the Public Access to Information Act (Paia); and the Secretary in fulfilling his/her role as the information officer in terms of the Act.
The proceedings and procedures of the Legislature are determined by a set of Standing Rules. The unit assists the Management Committee on Rules in the drafting of the Standing Rules and also provides advice to the Speaker and various office bearers, including chairpersons of committees, committees, Members and staff on the interpretation and implementation of the Standing Rules. This includes advice to the Speaker on making rulings in the House and advice to chairpersons of committees on processes to be followed during committee meetings.
The unit assists the Chief Whip of the Legislature in drafting motions or resolutions for tabling in and adoption by the House. Since the programme of the Legislature and the business of the House on the Order Paper are determined by the Management Committee on Programming and the Whips’ Forum, respectively, the unit also assists with procedural and legal advice in that regard.
Policies concerning Members’ benefits, facilities or support are also developed and considered by the Whips’ Forum and the Legislature Executive Committee (Lexco) and this may require legal advice and assistance from time to time.
The Committee on Oversight (Stacov) maintains oversight of the financial management of the Legislature. Legal Services assists this committee in fulfilling its mandate and provides legal advice and support, where required.
In terms of the Standing Rules, Members of the Legislature are required to annually make disclosure of their registrable interests in a format approved by the Standing Committee on Discipline. The Secretary, who is also the Registrar of Members’ Interests, must ensure compliance. Legal Services assists the Secretary in his/her capacity as Registrar.
The Standing Committee on Discipline, chaired by the Deputy Speaker, is responsible for the implementation of the Code of Conduct for Members, to investigate matters of a disciplinary nature against Members and to make findings and recommendations on disciplinary action to be taken. Legal Services assists the committee in conducting its work in this regard.
In terms of the Constitution of the RSA, the Legislature is required to facilitate public involvement in its legislative and other processes. Typically this takes the form of public educational workshops or briefings and public hearings to obtain public submissions and input on Bills being processed by the Legislature. The unit assists with these activities and will analyse and consolidate public submissions for consideration by the relevant committee with a view to possibly amending Bills before it. Once a committee has agreed to amend a Bill, a legal advisor will draft the amendments, as well as the relevant committee report accompanying the Bill to be tabled in the House for debate. The legal advisor is also required to advise committees on the constitutionality and legality of legislative provisions in general, including proposed amendments.
In terms of the Standing Rules, a committee or a Member in his/her private capacity may also introduce a Bill in the House, and not only a member of the executive. Legal Services may be required to assist in the drafting of a committee or a private Members’ Bill.
With regard to law-making, the Legislature is not only vested with provincial legislative authority, but is also required to consider and vote on any national legislation affecting provinces or Bills amending the Constitution of the RSA, through the National Council of Provinces. The Legislature may propose amendments to such Bills by way of a negotiating mandate. A legal advisor will assist the relevant committee in processing such Bills and in the conferral of negotiating and final mandates, including the drafting of proposed amendments and in advising the committee in general on the legality of the legislative provisions and the proposed amendments. Ordinarily such Bills are also subject to a process of public hearings and the taking down and consideration of public submissions. A legal advisor will also assist the committee in this regard.
With regard to conducting oversight of the provincial executive authority, this is carried out by portfolio committees and the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa). Legal Services assists these committees in performing their functions in this regard and provides legal advice pertaining to matters arising from their deliberations.
Legal Services also assists in the drafting or vetting of committee reports and resolutions for tabling and debating in the House.
Finally, Legal Services assists in capacity building of Members and conducts training on the Standing Rules of the KZN Legislature and other relevant legislation or processes, where required.
Constitutional and Legislative Legal Services Unit
2nd Floor: Administrative Building
244 Langalibalele Street
Acting Manager: Mr Raneer Sukraj
Office: 033 3557716
Fax: 033 3557586
Mobile: 083 6278070
A Brief History of Hansard
Hansard is the official report of all proceedings which take place inside the parliamentary or legislative Chamber. Its origins date back to the 18th century when transcripts of debates in the British parliament began to appear in print.
At first the publication of any transcripts of parliamentary proceedings was deemed to be illegal, and it was only in 1771, after a long and protracted court battle, that it became legal for parliamentary debates to be transcribed and made public. Until then all parliamentary sittings were strictly held in private, and members of the public were not even allowed to enter the so-called “public gallery” while sittings were in progress.
The name “Hansard” was derived from the family name of Luke Hansard and his son Thomas Curson Hansard who were the government printers in the service of the British parliament. During the 60 years of the Hansard family’s publication of parliamentary debates, the name “Hansard” became synonymous with the printed debates. Some Commonwealth parliaments have deviated from this tradition, and simply call transcripts of parliamentary debates the “Official Report.”
The history of Hansard in South Africa dates back to 1910 when parliamentary debates of the then Union of South Africa were published in leather-bound volumes. In 2010 the South African Hansard celebrated its 100th anniversary.
The HLS Unit in the KZN Legislature was established in October 2005 and consists of 14 staff members, excluding vacancies which are in the process of being filled. Prior to the establishment of an in-house Hansard and Language Services Unit, the transcription of debates was outsourced to a private company. When the HLS Unit was established, the Legislature discontinued its analogue system and replaced it with a digital recording system called For the Record.
How does Hansard work?
The HLS Unit’s primary function is to report the proceedings of the House. Every sitting of the House is recorded and Members’ speeches, interjections, points of order, as well as announcements and/or rulings by the Presiding Officer are transcribed, edited and made available in printed form.
During sittings of the House, Members will be approached by service officers who will request them to make available copies of their speech notes. These notes greatly assist transcribers who must ensure that speeches are correctly transcribed. Members are encouraged to send electronic copies of their speeches or reports to the Hansard Control Editors (see details below), and any embargo on such material will be respected.
Mr Buyani Mdluli
Control Editor (isiZulu)
Office: 033 3557545
Fax: 033 355 7588 or 086 573 2361
Mr Allan Parrott
Control Editor (English)
Office: 033 3557571
Fax: 033 355 7588 or 086 573 1664
Electronic copies of Hansard debates will be made available to Members on compact discs (CDs) as soon as they are available. Members are requested to ensure that their correct mailing details are provided to Mrs Nomusa Gina (Tel 033 3557667).
The HLS Unit records all off-site sittings of the KZN Legislature, as well as the proceedings of the Youth Parliament, Workers’ Parliament, Women’s Parliament, Parliament for People with Disabilities, Senior Citizens’ Parliament, Learners’ Parliament, People’s Assembly, Inter-faith Symposia, et cetera. The unit also records proceedings of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa); the Portfolio Committee on Finance and all public hearings on Bills.
Hansard has no editorial policy, except the pursuit of excellence and accuracy. The unit is not hampered by conceptions of news value, and has no bias towards either person or political party. Its objective is to provide an impartial, accurate and a largely verbatim report of the proceedings of the KwaZulu-Natal Legislature.
The three official languages of the KwaZulu-Natal Legislature are isiZulu, English and Afrikaans and Members may deliver speeches in any of these three languages.
Apart from recording, editing, proofreading and publishing the debates of the House, the unit also renders translation and interpreting services to the Legislature. The unit also edits and proofreads the KZN Legislature’s Annual Report, Annual Operational Plans, Annual Performance Plans, as well as any official publication that may be referred to it.
Bills, explanatory memoranda, schedules and other official documents such as petitions are regularly translated by the Hansard and Language Services Unit.
Interpreting is provided during sittings of the House, off-site sittings of the KZN Legislature, sector parliaments, committee meetings (on request), pre-hearings on Bills, public hearings on Bills and any educational workshops pertaining to legislation.
It should be noted that the HLS Unit provides simultaneous interpreting mainly in two languages (isiZulu and English) during sittings of the House, as well as consecutive interpreting during committee meetings and public hearings. Members are urged to use the language of their choice during sittings. Members are issued with headphones to enable them to follow interpreting during proceedings of the House.
The HLS Unit of the KwaZulu-Natal Legislature forms part of the Commonwealth Hansard Editors’ Association (Africa Region), as well as the international Commonwealth Hansard Editors’ Association (Chea). To date the unit has represented the KZN Legislature at various meetings and conferences held in South Africa, as well as Tanzania, Uganda, the United Kingdom, India, Trinidad and Tobago.
Hansard editors are also involved in national and provincial structures of the Pan South African Language Board (PanSALB), the Department of Arts and Culture and tertiary institutions offering language training.
Conclusion Without the HLS Unit, there would be no record of our history as a people, as a province or as a nation. Thanks to the work done by the dedicated staff of this unit, Members’ speeches and comments, their perspectives and perceptions, their thoughts and their ideals are captured for posterity and will be read by scholars, intellectuals, sociologists, historians and other learned men and women in years and decades to come.
Hansard and Language Services Unit
1st floor: Administration Building
244 Langalibalele Street
Manager: Ms Jacqueline Stone
Hansard & Language Services (English)
Office: 033 3557557
Fax: 033 3557588 or 086 573 2973
Manager: Mr Mqondisi Ngcobo
Hansard & Language Services Manager (isiZulu)
Office: 033 3557552
Fax: 033 3557588 or 086 573 4462