Ricochet News

DA Chief Whip in hot water after apparent mocking of Minister’s eyesight

By Charl Bosch - Nov 6, 2015
DA Chief Whip in hot water after apparent mocking of Minister’s eyesight

The African National Congress (ANC) has lashed out Democratic Alliance (DA) Chief Whip, John Steenhuisen, over his apparent mocking of Justice Minister Michael Masutha’s visual impairment.

In an entry on Politicsweb, ANC Spokesperson in the Office of Chief Whip Stone Sizani, Moloto Mothapo, said Masutha had asked the presiding officer to confirm whether the number of DA MP’s present were sufficient to call for a vote in accepting the Department Higher Education’s budget in Parliament yesterday, when Steenhuisen remarked that his visual impairment was to blame for the state of his department.

“The utterance by Steenhuisen is not only careless and outrageous but shockingly discriminatory. The statement explicitly suggests that minister Masutha, by merely being partially sighted, is inherently incompetent, unintelligent and not fit to lead the department,” Mothapo said.

“(His) remarks were not only insulting to the Minister, but also to the many people living with (a) disability. (This) disgraceful jibe illustrates the type of ignorance that reinforces disturbing and dangerous stereotypes against people living with disability”.

Responding to the criticism on twitter, Steenhuisen said he had referred to Masutha’s poor grasp of Parliamentary rules and not his eyesight.


IMAGE sourced from eNCA