Communities under traditional leaders, especially in rural areas, will be empowered to have a final say through majority votes when their leaders enter into partnerships or contracts. This once the Traditional and Khoisan Leadership Bill is signed into law.
The National Assembly passed the bill earlier this week with the amendments made by the National Council of Provinces (NCOP). It was first passed by the Assembly in November last year, sent to the NCOP for Concurrence and then the NCOP made changes and sent it back to the National Assembly.
Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Committee Chairperson Richard Mdakane says the amendment made by the NCOP was necessary.
“Many people particularly rural areas, they have always been raising that Traditional Council are not consulting them when entering into partnership with other companies and other individuals. And at the National Assembly we didn’t put it down that there should be majority decision making. The NCOP then took it further to say when the traditional council and traditional leaders enter into an agreement or partnership with whoever, the majority of people in that area must have been consulted and also taking a majority decision. This really is a very important element which the NCOP added on. Because at the National Assembly we ended up saying there must be consultation, in consultation. Because our understanding was that consultation simply means that you can’t take a decision unless you agree all of us. But I think they assisted when they put the majority of the people present at the meeting should have been consulted and also taken such a decision that you agree or you don’t agree.”
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