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National Assembly passes Division of Revenue Amendment Bill & Electronic Deeds Registration System Bill

13 November 2018

The African National Congress in Parliament is pleased with the passing of the Division of Revenue Amendment Bill, and the Electronic Deeds Registration Systems Bill by the National Assembly (NA) today.

Division of Revenue Amendment Bill

The Division of Revenue Amendment Bill, also known as the Adjustment Budget, adjusts the equitable division of revenue raised nationally among the national, provincial and local spheres of government.

We welcome the additional allocation of R175.8 million to the Education Infrastructure Grant to help schools damaged by disaster in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) and Western Cape. The ANC is pleased that R150 million will help to repair and rehabilitate over 87 schools in KZN and the remaining R25.8 million will repair and rehabilitate 22 schools in the Western Cape Province.

We are also encouraged by the improved performance of the Schools Infrastructure Backlogs Grant, hence the additional allocation of R800 million for the completion of school infrastructure projects. This allocation is about the future of our children.

On Human Settlements, we applaud the decision to ring-fence funds for upgrading of informal settlements in Human Settlements Development Grants. We also welcome the additional R100.1 million to the Human Settlements Development Grant for the repair of over 3280 subsidised houses damaged by floods in Kwazulu-Natal and 3 houses damaged by fire in Knysna, Western Cape.

Under Social Development, the ANC welcomes the new Provincial Disaster Recovery Grant with a budget of R16.3 million for responding to the damage caused by heavy storms and floods in KZN.

This adjustment budget also reflects our commitment to maintaining a credible fiscal path. No funds are added that were not provided for at the time the 2018 Budget was tabled in February this year. We welcome the fact that all of the increased spending in this Bill is funded through reprioritisations within existing budgets and drawing down on the contingency reserves that were set aside for this purpose at the start of the year. As a result, this amendment Bill does not increase our deficit or interest payments on the national debt.

We applaud the Ministry of Finance and the Standing Committee on Appropriations for having concluded this clearly balanced adjustment budget which remains responsive to the needs of the country while adhering to the financial governance rules set out in our legal framework.

Electronic Deeds Registration System Bill

This Bill will ensure that registration of deeds and other documents, which are currently processed manually by the Registrar of Deeds, are processed electronically.

Since the dawn of democracy, South Africa has seen an increase in the number of deeds registration. This also correlates with the age of computerisation in the 21st, which has seen the urgent need for electronic service delivery. In response to this demand, The Electronic Deeds Registration System Bill (2016), is legislation that sanctions the development of an Electronic Deeds Registration System.

The Deeds Registration System (DRS) will facilitate the large volumes of deeds registrations; improve turn-around times for the registration of deeds; provide access to the deeds registration database, and improve services, security features including confidentiality and integrity.

The ANC in parliament is adamant that this Bill will expedite the registration of deeds by removing the red-tape and decreasing time in the deeds registration process;safeguarding government's land reform initiatives, whilst ensuring that our people don't wait for a protracted period of time to access land.

Both Bills will be sent to the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) for concurrence.

Issued by the Office of the ANC Chief Whip, comrade Jackson Mthembu.

Nonceba Mhlauli
072 623 3462

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