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Pension Funds Amendment Bill adopted without any objections

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The National Council of Province’s Select Committee on Finance has adopted the Pension Funds Amendment Bill without any objections. It will be brought before the NCOP House for final approval and sent back to the National Assembly with minor amendments.

This is one of the two Bills that seek to allow pension fund members partial access to their funds from a savings component. When the Select Committee held public hearings on Tuesday, it spotted technical amendments. And this caused concern about whether the changes would delay the processing of the Bill.

“We will be very happy if the technical amendments can be made and if it won’t hold up the process to pass the Bill as soon as possible,” says Adri Messerschmidt from the Association for Savings and Investment.

Another minor amendment made by the National Treasury also came to the fore. The committee was concerned about some of these glitches which include typographical errors.

“On the matter of typographical glitches, I know treasury, you are under pressure and parliament is under pressure, but this is happening increasingly in the last few years and it’s just not acceptable. The primary responsibility is of the executive, but also parliament’s oversight staff I mean to check these things, but I don’t know who, what should do, but it is extremely worrying, and I think we should not let it pass so we must effect the changes,” says Yunus Carrim, Chairperson of the Select Committee on Finance.

“Those typographical changes, the new combined words we see and the full stop, semicolons that’s been omitted, even that one paragraph that’s been moved to the next, those are typographical, we can affect those administratively. We don’t need to put those on a proposed change. The others are more substantial. Those need to be a proposed change that will go back to the NA for a sealer. So, we can affect the other changes, and it will same time,” Frank Jenkins, Parliament’s Legal Adviser.

The committee ultimately adopted the Bill and the report on Friday, with some changes.

There were lighter moments during its adoption as Dennis Ryder from the DA and Fanie Du Toit from the FF Plus were happy with the Bill.

The report was also adopted without any objections. The Bill and the Committee’s report are expected to be brought before the NCOP for final approval on Thursday. If passed, it will be sent back to the National Assembly to approve or reject the changes made by the NCOP.

Source: SABC News

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