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Parliament sends youth agency packing

Jun 12 2013 16:34 Sapa
South Africa youth agency NYDA


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Cape Town - A National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) delegation was sent packing by a parliamentary committee on Wednesday because of the absence of its chairperson and CEO.

The NYDA was scheduled to brief the portfolio committee on appropriations on its fourth quarter expenditure report.

Chairperson Yershen Pillay, his deputy Itiseng Kenny Morolong, and CEO Steven Ngobeni failed to present themselves at the meeting.

Deputy Minister in the Presidency Obed Bapela did attend, informing the committee that Ngobeni was ill and unable to travel.

Ngobeni, however, failed to inform the committee in writing that he was ill and would not be able to travel to Cape Town for the meeting.

"We really welcome you wanting to come here," committee chairperson Mshiyeni Sogoni told Bapela.

"However, in terms of the PFMA [Public Finance Management Act], the CEO has a responsibility to come and present himself."

MPs from across the political spectrum agreed, saying the meeting should be adjourned until next Friday to give Ngobeni time to recover so he could account for the NYDA's financial position and performance.

The politicians said Ngobeni had been CEO for the past four years and should have had the decency to apologise to the committee.

It was the second time in two weeks that the appropriations committee had sent officials away.

The fractious relationship between Communications Minister Dina Pule and her director general Rosey Sekese led to a similar situation.

In that committee meeting, Sekese had sent a letter to MPs saying she was unable to attend because the minister had stripped her of her powers.

Pule denied this, saying the only power she had taken from Sekese was that of making decisions in the department's human resources division.

Sekese, who Pule was trying to remove from her position, should have attended as she was the department's accounting officer.

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nyda  |  youth unemployment
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