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Eastern Cape SOPA 2020: DA condemns violence, says province 'is broken'

Feb 26, 2020
Eastern Cape SOPA 2020: DA condemns violence, says province 'is broken'

Bhisho - The Democratic Alliance in the Eastern Cape says what happened in the Eastern Cape Legislature ahead of the State of the Province Address on Tuesday, when members of the Economic Freedom Fighters were thrown out of the chambers following heated exchanges with the Speaker, is unacceptable.

"Violence in the house can never be condoned in a parliamentary democracy," said DA Eastern Cape leader, Nqaba Bhanga.

"I rose on a point of order, to request that the EFF be allowed to stay in the chamber and have the matter referred to the Ethics Committee, to avoid potential violence in the house, like what occurred in the North West.

"Sadly, the Speaker fell into the trap that the EFF set for her and the decorum of the house was completely disrupted."

Bhanga said that looking at the State of the Province Address, it is clear the ANC is set on doing more of the same when what is needed is extraordinary measures.

"Several of the initiatives mentioned by Premier Oscar Mabuyane today are not new, they are initiatives that were launched with much fanfare during previous terms, and then silently fell by the wayside, such as the biofuel project in Cradock, the Bhisho Precinct and others," Bhanga said.

"These initiatives have now been revived by the Premier, with millions more being allocated, and no guarantees that anything is going to change.

"Mabuyane glossed over the drought, the single biggest threat to the province. Day zero has arrived and he has offered zero solutions. Without water there is nothing. Towns are collapsing as their taps run dry!

"He did not address the bloated state and the public sector wage bill."

Bhanga further said that unemployment is the highest in the country, at 39,6 %. 

"We need real jobs from real economic growth, not temporary Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP), Youth Employment Service (YES), and the National Youth Service (NYSP) posts funded by the state.

"Time is running out for the Eastern Cape. Our local municipalities are collapsing, service delivery is non-existent. Our schools are falling apart, our people are homeless, unemployed and hungry," he said.

"The people have lost faith in government, they are saying enough is enough. They are going to court and they are winning.

"We need to accept that the Eastern Cape is broken. Only once we accept this, can we start moving forward and implement lasting solutions that will turn this province around.

"We cannot continue to do the same things and expect different results."

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