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The Joint Standing Committee on Financial Management of Parliament has welcomed reassurances that Parliament will continue to host the State of the Nation Address (SONA) and carry out its oversight responsibilities, despite damages to the National Assembly, the National Council of Provinces and the Old Assembly buildings due to the recent fire in the first week of January.

The committee was briefed on the fire by the Department of Public Works and the Acting Secretary to Parliament.

The Co-Chairperson, Peace Mabe, said that although the committee will not interfere with investigations by law enforcement agencies, it will get to the bottom of the causes of the fire and ensure that those responsible face the full might of the law.

The committee heard from the Department of Public Works that all fire equipment, including sprinklers, fire hydrants, hose reels, extinguishers, fire panels and detectors were in good working condition at the time of fire.

“We are determined on our oversight work and next week we should get reports from the City of Cape Town fire department and the South African Police Service. We should also have a delegation to conduct an in loco inspection on the temporary venue that will host the SONA,” said Mabe.