An embarrassed Parliament says South Africans and people from across the globe had to once again witness MPs engaging in disorderly and disruptive conduct and has apologised for the scenes that unfolded.
This comes after President Cyril Ramaphosa’s budget vote presentation in the National Assembly chambers descended into chaos on Thursday, when Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) members continuously heckled Ramaphosa and other African National Congress (ANC) MPs.
Moments after Ramaphosa started his speech on Friday morning and sticking to the same tactic that the party used on Thursday, the EFF insisted that the national Assembly cannot be addressed by Ramaphosa.
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Disruptions in Parliament by MP’s who are paid by taxpayers have become an almost frequent occurence which has made the sittings a lauging stock in South Africa and across the globe.
The latest shenanigans that unfolded in national assembly prompted journalist Alex Mitchley to share a tweet about chaotic scenes.
“As you are watching the chaotic scenes play out in Parliament, just remember that MP earns no less than R1.1 million per annum, paid by that taxpayer. The public is paying large sums of money for this fiasco.”
As you are watching the chaotic scenes play out in Parliament, just remember that MP earns no less than R1.1 million per annum, paid by that taxpayer. The public is paying large sums of money for this fiasco.— Alex Mitchley (@AlexMitchley) June 10, 2022
Parliament has since apologised to South Africans for what it calls the distasteful scenes that have played out in the National Assembly over the past two days.
“Speaker of the National Assembly, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, condemns in the strongest terms the conduct of Members of Parliament, particularly those of the EFF for their disregard of the rules, the decorum of the House and the authority of the Speaker as provided for in the Rules of the House.”
Parliament said two parliamentary chamber protection services staff were also assaulted in the process of the forceful removal of rowdy MPs from the Chamber, and are receiving medical attention.
“Criminal charges, which include assault and intimidation, are being opened by the staff members against the responsible EFF MPs. Parliament is providing the necessary support to these members of staff.”
Parliament said it takes oversight over the Executive, including the President, very seriously and will always ensure the right of MPs to exercise their constitutional functions is protected.
“However, the kind of conduct displayed is obstructive to the business of the House and impedes the ability of the institution to oversee the actions of the Executives and hold them to account.”
Parliament added that it has also noted allegations of gender-based violence (GBV) and alleged mishandling of MPs by parliamentary protection services.
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