Meeting to discuss unrest postponed due to legal concerns

The committees were meeting to discuss an inquiry into the violence and looting that devastated KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

Parliament of South Africa in Cape Town. Picture: EWN

CAPE TOWN - A joint meeting of parliamentary committees to discuss a report on the recent civil unrest, had to be postponed on Friday due to legal concerns over the process.

It included the police and justice committees from the National Assembly and select committee on security and justice from the National Council of Provinces.

The committees were meeting to discuss a parliamentary inquiry into the violence and looting that devastated KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

The joint meeting of committees in the security cluster received advice from parliamentary senior legal advisor Siviwe Njikela on applicable legislation for such an inquiry.

Njikela said an inquiry would need to get the nod from both houses of parliament before it could start meeting officially.

“There has to be a resolution by both houses to establish such a joint committee if it does not fall within the statutory and constitutional committees that are already established.”

Police committee chairperson Tina Joemat-Pettersson said the matter must be referred to National Assembly Speaker Thandi Modise.

“I therefore propose that this matter be referred back to the speaker, the national chair of chairs, as well as the chief whip for further consideration and that today, this meeting is not formally convened as a joint committee.”

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