Lies? It's all democracy, Zuma explains

2016-11-23 22:03
President Jacob Zuma (Jaco Marais, Netwerk24)

President Jacob Zuma (Jaco Marais, Netwerk24)

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Cape Town – Lies? No, it's democracy, President Jacob Zuma told Parliament on Wednesday.

Zuma was answering questions in the National Assembly when he decided to explain the concept of democracy to MPs.

He was asked what efforts he was making to assure investors that South Africa had a stable political climate. 

He said he always made it clear to them that South Africa was a democratic country and that people were free to express themselves.

"And at times, people mistake that as a volatile situation."

He was often asked by people outside the country about what was happening in Parliament, he said, and he explained to them that it was democracy at work.

"We have democracy where people can stand and talk. It is the manner in which we handle our democracy that seems to look like there is a volatile situation. It's democracy, that's how we want it," he said.

He said South Africans were outspoken and "we don't keep quiet".

"That people can get up, say what they want, use insults, tell lies. That's democracy," he told MPs.

Doom for Zwane

Wednesday was the last question-and-answer session for Zuma in the National Assembly for the year.

MPs were in a jovial mood as the president fielded jokes on his memorising the government's nine-point plan.

"Where is that one that likes the nine-point plan?" Zuma said at one point, looking for DA MP David Maynier.

Zuma famous giggle was heard in House when Maynier, inspired by recent reports about a pastor who believes in the healing powers of a pesticide, suggested a dose for mining minister Mosebenzi Zwane.

"If there is one minister who must be sprayed with Doom, it is Minister Zwane," Maynier said.

He was speaking in reference to the president's assertion that Zwane had been reprimanded for writing a press release that was not approved by Cabinet on the closure of Oakbay accounts and that the minister had apologised.

"That matter is now closed," Zuma said.

Read more on:    parliament  |  jacob zuma  |  politics

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