NCOP must be fearless in dealing with the North West - Thandi Modise

2018-05-22 20:56
National Council of Provinces chairperson Thandi Modise. (City Press)

National Council of Provinces chairperson Thandi Modise. (City Press)

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The National Council of Provinces (NCOP) must be "thorough, non-partisan and fearless" in its work in the North West, NCOP chairperson Thandi Modise said.

"Our primary client, our 'boss', is the people," she said as she presented Parliament's budget to the NCOP on Tuesday.

Two weeks ago, Cabinet decided to invoke Section 100 (1) of the Constitution, effectively putting the whole provincial administration of the North West under administration.

This follows a Cabinet decision two weeks ago to put the province's health department under administration.

The Constitution requires the NCOP to exercise oversight when this section is invoked. 

"As the NCOP, we play an important role in strengthening co-operative governance," Modise said in her speech.

"We are currently gearing up for the Section 100(1)(b) intervention on almost the entire North West provincial administration." 

"This intervention was reviewed from being just on the health department. We are called upon to be thorough, non-partisan and fearless in our work."

READ MORE: North West put under administration: What happens now?

At a press briefing before the budget vote speech, Modise said the NCOP had already set up the committee, which would "straddle all departments". 

Asked if she would be deployed to the North West, where she served as premier from 2010 to 2014, she said she had definitely not been approached but that she read about speculation in this regard.

"I do not think at this late hour the ANC will ask me to go to North West," she said. She added that it was, however, the ANC's culture to deploy its members.

"I'm hoping that they don't deploy me (to the North West)," she said.

She and Speaker of the National Assembly Baleka Mbete were also asked how they experienced their respective houses of Parliament since Cyril Ramaphosa took over as president of the country from Jacob Zuma.

"Do I sleep better now that uBaba has left? No, no, no, not at all," Modise said. 

She said it seemed the NCOP had become more focused on the topics at hand.

"We tended to deal with each other, now we deal with issues."

Mbete added: "I can't believe you think we can be so preoccupied with one individual."

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