The Final journey of Medicines and Related Substances Amendment Bill

I’ve found it so interesting to watch the process of a Bill though the committees and finally through the acceptance in Parliament.

For the Medicines and Related Substances Amendment Bill, I was there when the National Department of Health (NDoH) briefed the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) on 25 August 2015. Then on 22 September 2015, there was a session to negotiate mandates and responses by the NDoH. Then on 20 October, we saw the Bill formally adopted.

The meeting started with the Chairperson apologising to Members, as the Committee was supposed to have finalised the Medicines and Related Substances Amendment Bill (B6B – 2014) in the previous meeting. She wanted to start with the third item on the agenda, which was the adoption of the final mandates on the Bill.

Members from each of the provinces were asked how the province had voted on the Bill. All of the provinces voted in favour of the Bill, and all amendments on the Bill.

The Chairperson quickly went through the report that the Committee was adopting. The report read that the Department of Health (DoH) had briefed the Committee on Bill B6B of 2014 on 13 August 2015. The Select Committee on Social Services, having deliberated on and considered the subject of the Medicines and Related Substances Amendment Bill, had decided to give the report that it has agreed to the Bill. The report was being put forth and the Chairperson wanted to make sure that all Members were satisfied with it.

Ms T Mpambo-Sibhukwane (DA, Western Cape) said that the Western Cape supported the report.

Ms L Zwane (ANC, KwaZulu-Natal) said that KwaZulu-Natal also accepted the report.

The Chairperson announced that the Bill had been finalised, and thanked Members for their participation at the provincial level. She thanked representatives from the Department of Health (DoH), and excused them from the meeting.

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