Health Committee concludes first phase of public participation on NHI Bill
25 February 2020
The Portfolio Committee on Health has successfully concluded the first phase of public participation on the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill. This phase included extensive public hearings in all the nine provinces of the country, with a minimum three public hearings per province.
The guiding principles that underpin the importance of this phase of the legislation-making process is to give life to the expression of a “people’s Parliament” that understands and incorporates varying views of a diverse society like South Africa. “The Constitution of South Africa’s section 59 (1) (a) and section 72 (1) (a) enjoin both Houses of Parliament to facilitate public involvement in the legislative and other processes of the National Assembly and its committees. With these public hearings we are confident that South Africans have been given ample opportunity to make their views heard and taken into consideration by the committee,” said Dr SibongiseniDhlomo, the Chairperson of the committee.
The committee is grateful to all South Africans, young and old, who participated in this process, and it assures all South Africans that their views will be considered when it deliberates on the final product.
Furthermore, the committee acknowledged that despite the varying views on the matter during the hearings, participants were generally well-behaved and tolerant of differing views. “We are confident that our process cannot be faulted and that a conducive environment was created to enable participants to share their views on the Bill,” Dr Dhlomo said.