EFF throws Parliament into chaos
ANC Secretary General, Gwede Mantashe, has lambasted the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) for what he described as ‘trampling on the dignity of Parliament”. This comes after the party disrupted proceedings on Thursday while questioning President Jacob Zuma about the controversial upgrades into his Nkandla homestead.
Sittings were thrown into chaos after EFF leader, Julius Malema, had objected to Zuma’s reply of when he is prepared to pay back a portion of the R246 million spent on upgrades as instructed by Public Protector, Thuli Madonsela.
Zuma’s response of having addressed the matter in his reply to Madonsela’s Nkandla report, submitted last Thursday, was rejected by EFF chief whip, Floyd Shivambu, who demanded that the president answer the question.
“We will not leave this chamber until this question is answered,” he said.
Warned by National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete to sit down or faced being thrown out, party members began chanting ‘pay back the money’, forcing Mbete to dissolve proceedings and instructing security to remove the still chanting EFF members.
“The House has been joined by people who are reckless with the dignity of our people that elect Parliament and that's not something that's being appreciated by many of our people out there, by the parties in the House,” News24 quotes Mbete as saying.
“We can differ when we debate politically, but if there's one thing we all are agreed on as parties and members of Parliament is that we respect our Parliament because we respect our people and we therefore work with each other with respect,”
In a statement, ANC spokesperson, Zizi Kodwa, said that the clear intention of the EFF was “not to engage within the framework of promoting public accountability, but has an intention of undermining not only the purpose of parliament but to promote anarchy and general disrespect”.
“The EFF cannot and should not be allowed to take our people for granted. This freedom that they are undermining is akin to desecrating the graves of those who fought for them to be members of the same parliament,” read the statement.
Speaking to gathering journalists outside the court, Malema said that there is no hiding when it comes to the National Assembly.
“It happened precisely because we cannot allow business as usual where people come to Parliament and don't take responsibility," Malema told journalist outside the court.
"The president uses Parliament to hide his shenanigans.”
Photo sourced from www.timeslive.co.za
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