Department of Rural Development and Land Reform & Department of Environmental Affairs on their 2013/14 Annual Reports
The DRDLR assured the Committee that the Department’s annual report was broken down into provinces. The Department had 51 people it had trained in all the provinces, and had 157 functional councillors, consisting of stakeholders, for rural development. 293 restitution claims had been finalised in the 2013/14 financial year, and the Department had paid R78 million as compensation to land claim beneficiaries. The highest claim paid had been R28 million in the Free State. In the land reform project, jobs had been created.119 new farms had been put under recapitalisation, on top of the 320 farms that were already under the recap programme. Job creation in the land reform recap programme had increased. The Department had spent 99.9% of its budget, and all entities of the Department had received an unqualified audit opinion.
The DEA focused its presentation on the targets which the Department had only partially achieved, or not achieved. These included delays in the implementation of the new head office building project, the finalisation of ocean systems, and the completion of climate change and greenhouse gas reports. The draft climate change and air quality management plan, and the draft vehicle emissions control strategy, had also missed deadline. Vacant posts had been filled later than expected. In the financial year 2013/14, the Department had paid its invoices within 30 days. It had incurred no irregular expenditure, but there had been fruitless and wasteful expenditure from the previous year’s projects. It had complied with all disclosure requirements, classifications and policy frameworks prescribed by the Treasury.
Members congratulated both Departments on a job well done. The Committee could not engage in discussion on both presentations because of time constraints. Members were asked to submit written questions so that the Departments could provide answers.
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