Parliament committee continues probe into EFF disruption

2014-10-20 08:59

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Parliament’s powers and privileges committee will resume disciplinary proceedings against 20 Economic Freedom Fighters MPs, including party leader Julius Malema, who heckled President Jacob Zuma in the National Assembly.

The committee is tasked with probing the actions of Malema and his fellow MPs and whether this constituted contempt of the legislature.

The committee last Thursday requested six more witnesses to appear before it to give evidence on certain instances – where they played a role in engagements during the period just before the suspension of the sitting until the adjournment of the House.

The MPs face charges of disrupting and displaying contempt for the National Assembly after shouting “pay back the money” at Zuma.

This was after Malema questioned the president about Public Protector Thuli Madonsela’s directive to reimburse the state for luxuries added to his Nkandla home.

The EFF earlier in the month sought an urgent interdict to stop the process, claiming that the powers and privileges committee was likely to be biased because the majority of its members were from the ANC.

The application was dismissed by the Western Cape High Court after their lawyer, who was briefed shortly before the hearing, conceded that he could not substantiate the merit or the urgency of the matter.

The MPs face being suspended from the National Assembly for up to 14 working days if found guilty.

National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete said on August 26 that she was considering suspending the MPs.

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