Mbete to take advice on removing Malema's Zuma comments from record

2016-02-17 15:45
EFF leader Julius Malema. (File, Netwerk24)

EFF leader Julius Malema. (File, Netwerk24)

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Cape Town – National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete is to refer the issue of "unparliamentary speeches" to the rules committee.

Mbete controversially resolved on Tuesday to expunge EFF leader Julius Malema’s speech from the records.

After questions from the Cope, she said on Wednesday that Malema’s speech had been unparliamentary.

Addressing the matter before the start of the debate on Wednesday, Mbete said she had received a letter from the EFF, calling for her to withdraw her comments on expunging the speech from Parliament’s Hansard.

Citing examples from a 2009 sitting and international parliaments on why she believed the speech should not be on the record, she said it had included extremely personal remarks about President Jacob Zuma.

She said in some jurisdictions, the speaker could make such a decision.

"It is my view, ladies and gentlemen, that if the speaker was not able to do this, it would seriously undermine the image and effectiveness of Parliament to function as the Constitution intended. I will, in consultation with the chairperson of the National Council of Provinces, refer the principle of the matter to the rules committee."

Malema's scathing address

Malema delivered a scathing address on so-called errors in judgement made by Zuma as president and in his personal life.

The EFF leader said he refused to speak about what he called an "illegitimate" president's State of the Nation address (SONA).

"We do not recognise him due to his incapacity, lack of direction, association with criminal elements, unaccountability," Malema said during the SONA debate on Tuesday.

He told Zuma he was incapable of being a president. He went on to list a number of so-called errors of judgement, often hitting below the belt.

"This is a man who knowingly had sex with an HIV-positive woman and said a shower cures it.

"This is a man who knowingly impregnated a friend's child, knowing he had other wives at home. This is another sign of your misjudgements," Malema said.

Others things listed were the appointment of ministers said to have close relationships with the politically-connected Gupta family, and the "disastrous" changing of finance ministers in December.

Malema also apologised to former presidents Thabo Mbeki and Nelson Mandela, saying Zuma had misled him.

Read more on:    julius malema  |  jacob zuma  |  baleka mbete  |  cape town  |  politics  |  state of the nation 2016  |  parliament 2016

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