POLITICAL WEEK AHEAD: Cyril Ramaphosa quiz set to be the highlight of Parliament’s week
The highlight of the Parliamentary calendar this week will be President Cyril Ramaphosa’s presence in the National Assembly on Tuesday, when he answers questions from MPs.
For the rest of the week, Parliament will be dominated by budget votes in which government departments detail plans and spending priorities.
On Wednesday, Parliament will debate the budget votes for the departments of basic education, science and technology, justice and social development. On Thursday, the focus will be on economic development, arts and culture, human settlements and communications. The departments of rural development and land reform, and planning, monitoring and evaluation budget votes are scheduled for Friday.
The portfolio committee on home affairs will on Tuesday be briefed by Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba and director-general Mkuseli Apleni on the privatisation of a section of OR Tambo International Airport and its award to Fireblade Aviation.
The High Court in Pretoria recently found Gigaba’s claim that he never gave approval to the Oppenheimer project to establish a VIP facility at OR Tambo during a meeting in January 2016 was false.
Fireblade Aviation had sued Gigaba for allegedly going back on his undertaking to make officials available to Fireblade to staff its customs and immigration facility.
The portfolio committee on water and sanitation and the standing committee on public accounts will hold a joint meeting to discuss the terms of reference of the parliamentary inquiry into challenges facing the Department of Water and Sanitation.
On Wednesday, the standing committee on finance will be briefed by the Independent Regulatory Board for Auditors (Irba) on its annual report, progress of inquiries and policy issues. Irba could give an update on its inquiries into Steinhoff, KPMG and Deloitte’s audit on African Bank ahead of the bank’s collapse in 2014.
The joint constitutional review committee will meet on Thursday to adopt a programme for public hearings on the proposed review of section 25 of the Constitution to allow the state to expropriate land without compensation. The closing date for submissions is May 31.
The standing committee on the auditor-general will meet on Friday to consider the final version of the Public Audit Amendment Bill. The bill is intended to give the Office of the Auditor-General the power to refer adverse findings in its reports to investigative bodies, and recover funds lost due to noncompliance with the Public Finance Management Act.
On Monday, five MPs will be sworn in at the opening ceremony of the sixth ordinary session of the Pan African Parliament. They are Thandi Modise, Thoko Didiza, Julius Malema, Zwelivelile Mandlesizwe Mandela and Santosh Vinita Kalyan.