DOCUMENTS

PIC: Nhlanhla Nene cannot sit on the fence – David Maynier

DA MP says Minister must clarify his position on 'transparency clause' contained in Bill

Nhlanhla Nene cannot sit on the fence when it comes to transparency at the PIC

25 April 2018

The Minister of Finance, Nhlanhla Nene, cannot sit on the fence when it comes to the “transparency clause” contained in my Private Members Bill, entitled the Public Investment Corporation Amendment Bill [B1-2018], which is currently before Parliament.

We have been informed that the minister was briefed, and did authorize, the submission of National Treasury’s response to the Public Investment Corporation Amendment Bill [B1-2018], aimed at promoting transparency at the Public Investment Corporation.

However, we were also informed that the minister was not specifically briefed, and did not specifically authorize, National Treasury’s decision to oppose the provision in the Public Investment Corporation Bill [B1-2018], aimed at promoting transparency at the Public Investment Corporation.

This follows National Treasury, the Public Investment Corporation and the Government Employees Pension Fund’s stunning “about turn” on transparency and opposition to the amendment proposed in the Public Investment Corporation Amendment Bill [B1-2018] as follows:

Amendment of section 10 of Act 23 of 2004

Section 10 of the principal Act is hereby amended by the addition after subsection (2) of the following subsection:
‘‘(3) A report reflecting all investments of deposits, whether listed or unlisted, must annually be—
(a) submitted to the Minister for tabling with the annual report of the department; and 
(b) published on the website of the corporation.’’

This is a major setback for the campaign for greater transparency at the Public Investment Corporation, which is responsible for investing R1.928 trillion on behalf of its clients, most importantly the Government Employees Pension Fund, and wipes out a major disincentive to "rent seekers", with political influence, who may want to raid the Public Investment Corporation.

That is why I will write to the Minister of Finance, Nhlanhla Nene, requesting him to clarify his position on the “transparency clause” contained in the Public Investment Corporation Amendment Bill [B1-2018].

We will not sit back and allow the Public Investment Corporation to become a “piggy bank” for the “rent seekers” swarming around the governing party in South Africa.

Issued by David Maynier, DA Shadow Minister of Finance, 25 April 2018