Postponing Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature sitting undermines oversight and accountability: DA

MARCH 31, 2015

Urgent issues of public importance will now not be addressed in the Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature due to the sudden postponement of tomorrow’s sitting, claims the Democratic Alliance (DA) in the Eastern Cape. The House sitting has been postponed to 13 May 2015.

“Being question day, it was expected that the provincial executive would be giving answers to questions for oral reply to current controversies including the Amathole District Municipality R631 million toilet tender.

“The random postponement of legislature sittings does nothing but undermine oversight and accountability,” says the DA’s Chief Whip in the Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature, Bobby Stevenson.

He says in a memo on Monday, 30 March, the Deputy Speaker of the Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature, Bulelwa Tunyiswa, said that the reason for the postponement was “because Members will be fetching their children from schools since it is the day of closure of schools and the House will not make a quorum for the adoption of Committee reports during the House sitting” and “Members will be travelling to different corners of the Republic of South Africa for the Easter holidays”.

“This is a feeble excuse.  DA members of the legislature are here to work and make a difference.  That is what the public expects from us,” maintains Stevenson.

“It seems that the ANC wants to hide from the truth regarding the state of administration and service delivery in the province by not answering oral questions.  

“The DA does not support the postponement of tomorrow’s sitting.  

“We believe the legislature needs to sit more and not less if we are to improve service delivery in the province by means of effective oversight and enhanced accountability.”

He said the DA’s vision for turning the Eastern Cape around means the legislature must flex its muscles and ensure consequence management.