Committee votes in favor of police reform bill, citing urgent need
Despite concerns about the IPID Bill’s certification and clause 4’s constitutionality, the committee strongly supports its fundamental principles on police reform.
The Police Portfolio Committee voted to adopt the Independent Police Investigative Directorate Amendment Bill [B21-2023] and will now review it.
Most committee members see the need to strengthen IPID’s independence through legislation, in line with the Constitutional Court’s McBride v. Minister of Police ruling.
Although there are concerns about the Bill, especially its lack of certification by the State Law Advisor’s Office regarding the constitutionality of clause 4, the committee strongly supports the Bill’s fundamental principles.
This alignment with National Assembly Rule 286 (6) shows the committee’s commitment to following the legal framework.
They are determined to ensure that all their procedures strictly adhere to South Africa’s Constitution, laws, regulations, and National Assembly rules.
COMMITTEE IN FAVOUR OF IPID BILL
The committee’s Chairperson, Nocks Seabi, stressed the importance of this decision, saying, “This is crucial because Parliament is solely responsible for legislating IPID’s structure and operations under Section 206(6) of the Constitution.
We want to emphasize that we made this decision after careful legal advice and will follow legal principles throughout the process.”
In the meantime, the committee got an update and a plan of action stemming from the suggestions in the Presidential Expert Panel’s report on the July 2021 turmoil in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.
The committee has embraced this comprehensive plan and the strides taken in carrying out the recommendations aimed at the South African Police Service (SAPS).
IMPLEMENTING THE RECOMMENDATIONS DIRECTED TOWARD THE SOUTH AFRICAN POLICE SERVICE (SAPS)
At the same time, the committee obtained a report on the progress and an action plan derived from the suggestions given in the Presidential Expert Panel’s report regarding the July 2021 disturbances in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.
The committee has expressed its approval of this comprehensive plan and the progress achieved in putting into action the recommendations aimed at the South African Police Service (SAPS).
Meanwhile, the committee has decided to provide Members of Parliament with the time to deliberate on whether the committee should conduct a full inquiry into the unrest or defer it to the seventh Parliament.
A comprehensive process plan, outlining timeframes, will be drafted to evaluate the feasibility of addressing this matter.
This decision was made to avoid redundancy with the ongoing Presidential Expert Panel and South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) investigations, which are said to be nearing conclusion according to the SAHRC.