Hennie Bester`s tourism bill backfires as ANC and NNP MPL`s vote unanimously against it

Hennie Bester`s tourism bill backfires as ANC and NNP MPL`s vote unanimously against it

7 June 2000

In a highly unusual step the Western Cape Portfolio Committee on Economic Affairs today unanimously rejected the Western Cape Tourism Bill without even considering its contents formally.

The ANC proposed a motion that the bill be referred back to MEC Bester. The NNP seconded the motion, and in the absence of any DP members, it was passed unanimously .

Explaining developments , ANC spokesperson on Tourism in the Western Cape Legislature, Mr Riyahd Williams said ; " The rejection is clearly a setback for MEC Bester but also a triumph for accountable government.

"Bester treated the portfolio committee with contempt by presenting last minute amendments to the bill as changes that he =8Cmay consider =8C.

"The bill is fundamentally flawed and the ANC is calling for the redrafting of the bill in its entirety and proper consultation with all stakeholders, especially local government.

"Our view, as contained in our submission - that the provisions relating to local government are unconstitutional - was supported by the legal representatives of local government. "We also support the local government view that Bester`s Bill is an unwarranted intrusion into the functional responsibility of local government for local tourism.

"What surprised us was the NNP`s support for our motion against the bill.

Also, their snub to Bester by cancelling his presentation did not go unnoticed.

"Clearly they have refused to be a rubber stamp for the provinvcial cabinet.

"While this no doubt exacerbates tensions within the coalition, the decision of the committee will lead to a more transparent process and ultimately, better legislation."

Issued by African National Congress Western Cape

For further comment, contact, Riyahd Williams: 082-823-6698.

For any media enquiries, contact:
Cameron Dugmore, Head of Dept: 082-894-7553, or
Gert Witbooi, Provincial Media Officer: 082-570-9118.