Annual General Meeting: 23 November 2017
The fire industry has undergone major changes in the last few years and had to face many challenges. It is in this context that an industry body such as FFETA can and should play a major role as a vehicle for its members so as to be instrumental in spearheading decision making to deal with these changes and challenges. We have to continuously evaluate whether we are true to this objective.
Firstly in reviewing the past year’s performance by FFETA, I can report that its membership is currently standing at 96, it has assets of more than a million rand and it has representation on many regulatory bodies where it participates in decision making that has major impact on the fire industry. These are our current strengths as an organization and I need to thank the executive committee for driving the financial and infrastructural stability of the organization. However, I believe that the committee still has much potential and the responsibility to be more pro-active in identifying achievable and measurable goals to reach in line with the objectives as stated in our MOI.
Communication with our members is of utmost importance in our strategy to serve them. The committee strives to fulfil in this requirement through means of an electronic newsletter which updates members of current matters. I would like to thank Pre Govender who has taken on this responsibility in the last year and I hope that he will continue with this portfolio and would strive to produce more regular and relevant newsletters. The other leg of communication is our website. A substantial amount in our 2016/2017 budget was approved for a major revamp of our website which has been driven by Ivan Radmore. The main purpose is to allow FFETA members to benefit through the new website by displaying their ability and by building a trustworthy database in the industry. The vision of Mr Radmore has resulted in the buy-in of the SAQCC. This project will continue in 2018 and would need the active participation and support of all FFETA members to make it fulfil in its purpose. FFETA has also approved under its marketing expense the issuing of promotional laptop bags to its members.
FFETA’s participation in industry during 2017can is measured in its presentation on the following bodies:
*SANS working committees such as playing an integral role in the revision of SANS 1475 Part 1 & 2, SANS 10105, SANS 1910(albeit with frustration due to slow progress) and others such as a standard for vehicle systems. Here I need to thank Jeremy Kellett, Tom Dreyer, Duncan Boyes and Johan Pretorius for serving on the different working committees. I urge the other executive committee members as well as FFETA members to put their name forward and to represent FFETA on the SABS working committees. We cannot criticize the standards and then not have effective representation on working committee level.
FFETA also has had active representation at the SANAS steering technical committee.
and PER working committee. This has come about in the last two years and was of utmost importance as decisions have been made on this level in the past without participation of the fire industry leading to many negative consequences for our industry. Once again Johan Pretorius has been representing FFETA at these committees and I need to thank him for his time and input.
FFETA is also well represented at the SAQCC firstly because it has a seat as industry body as per the MOI, but also through individual FFETA members serving on the different bodies.
FFETA furthermore has representation at committee level of other industry bodies such as the FDIA and IFE. We also have had active representation at meetings by IFTA which has been welcomed. We have sadly lost the long standing representative of SAEESI and I hope that they will actively participate in our meetings in 2018.
Other industry matters which FFETA has participated in is discussions and decision making in how to deal with what can only be described as seemingly a break down in the 1475 permit scheme as managed by the SABS. A decision was made by the executive committee to take legal action to force the SABS to fulfil in its obligation to manage the permit scheme.
FFETA has also actively participated in the SAQCC/QCTO process in its endeavors to establish a qualification within the national framework. This is ongoing and I thank the individual FFETA members who will continue to play a major role with specific mention of John Caird and Tom Dreyer.
Finally I can report that FFETA had a hugely successful members’ function in its KZN region in June this year and we are looking forward to the Gauteng function tonight.
On this note I need to comment again on the effectiveness of our administrators with special mention of Rosemary Cowan. I would not have been able to manage my role as chairperson in the past 3 years without her support, as she always thinks ahead and ensures that FFETA runs. Much of the accolade for the effective operational performance of FFETA must go to Rosemary.
Lastly I herewith inform FFETA that I will not make myself available as chairperson for 2018. I believe that it is time for new blood and energy and may I say younger members to drive our organization to even higher heights! I will still make myself available to serve on the executive committee and hope to still actively render my services on other levels to FFETA. I thank the organization for putting its faith in me the last 3 years and even though I think we have achieved some success during my term as chairperson, I believe that under a new chair even more can and should be achieved.