14 June 2000
In its progress report to Cabinet today, the Flood Relief Command Centre indicated that prioritisation of the process on the basis of R300m allocated has been completed and work had started in a number of areas. This includes a special project for the reconstruction of the infrastructure in and around the Kruger National Park, including the Park fence. Cabinet noted that an additional R226m was available for immediate commitment in this regard.
The meeting approved revised arrangements for the chairing of the 6 Cabinet Committees, which will be shared evenly between the President, the Deputy President and the Minister of Home Affairs.
Cabinet noted the various international engagements of government and the President in particular, and the profound impact South Africa was making in international affairs. In this regard, the meeting approved the participation of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Industry in the China - Africa Co-operation Forum, which will take place in Beijing in October. An Interdepartmental Working Group will be established to prepare for the country's participation.
Cabinet noted the progress in the initiatives among Southern African countries to set up Transfrontier Conservation and Resources Areas, including the Lubombo Area between our country and Mozambique and Swaziland, and the Gaza-Kruger-Gonarezhou Area with Mozambique and Zimbabwe. The meeting approved the processes and procedures to be followed to finalise relevant agreements.
The following Bills were approved for submission to Parliament:
- South Africa Weather Service Bill, which had been brought back to Cabinet for slight amendments to ensure compliance with the Public Finance Management Act;
- Gas Bill (which is being released for public comment before submission to Parliament), dealing with regulation of the industry at the downstream level.
Cabinet was briefed on the administrative problems experienced by the Department of Welfare in the Eastern Cape Province; and it approved various strategies to rectify the situation.
Cabinet was informed of the steps taken to review alleged new information on the 1987 Helderberg Air Crash. Cabinet agreed that investigations should continue, and that the Minister of Transport would submit recommendations to Cabinet upon receiving adequate advice on the findings. Cabinet decided, in the interest of transparency, that the transcript of the TRC hearing on the matter should be released to the public. In this regard, consultations will be held with the TRC, in line with the TRC Act of 1994.
Cabinet approved the participation of members of the SANDF in the United Nations Peace Mission in the DRC (MONUC Phase II). The following specialised elements will be availed for the MONUC HQ in the DRC and logistical support base in the Central African Republic:
- Kinshasa Flight Operations Element;
- Airfield Crash Rescue Fire Fighting Teams;
- Air Cargo Handling Teams;
- Logistical Load Teams;
- Emergency Medical Teams and Equipment; and
- Water Processing Unit.
Final determination of deployment, the earliest possible date for which is 26 June 2000, will be made on the basis of South Africa's own assessment of the situation in area(s) of deployment, the assessment of the UN Secretary-General and the readiness of MONUC HQ in Kinshasa.
The following appointments were approved:
- Mr P Dexter and Dr P Matlou to the South African Tourism Board (SATOUR);
- Ms MA Hermanus to the post of Chief Inspector of Mines.
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Issued by: Government Communications (GCIS)