DA chief whip John Steenhuisen. Picture: Supplied
Durban – A row has erupted over Parliament’s portfolio committee oversight visits amid claims that MPs’ trips were being cancelled because the national legislature was running out of money.

This emerged when the DA slammed Parliament for cancelling oversight visits that were intended for some portfolio committees.

DA chief whip John Steenhuisen said on Sunday it was alarming that the oversight visits were cancelled for financial reasons, while Parliament’s secretary Gengezi Mgidlana continued to undertake “extravagant” overseas trips.

Steenhuisen said he would be writing to House chairperson of committees Cedric Frolick to find out why several scheduled oversight visits had been cancelled.

“The explanation provided seems to suggest that Parliament doesn’t have the money to carry out oversight,” Steenhuisen said.

He claimed that members of the higher education and training committee were informed that their oversight visit to universities and colleges in KwaZulu-Natal had been cancelled as there “were insufficient funds in the consolidated budget of the committees”.

He also said an intended study tour for the defence and military veterans portfolio committee had been postponed “on advice from the House chairperson of committees” and would be “rescheduled for the next financial year”.

But Frolick dismissed Steenhuisen's claims, saying he was “misinformed”. He said some trips had been cancelled for various reasons.

Political Bureau