ANC seeking to humiliate EFF - Malema

2014-10-07 13:00
EFF chief whip Floyd Shivambu. (Power FM)

EFF chief whip Floyd Shivambu. (Power FM) (Twitter [https://twitter.com/POWER987New)

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Cape Town - EFF leader Julius Malema on Tuesday led his fellow MPs out of a disciplinary hearing against them after saying Parliament should instead charge Speaker Baleka Mbete for disrupting presidential question time in August.

"It is our considered view that Baleka Mbete should appear before this committee because she made illegal threats to members of the EFF," Malema said in his representation to Parliament's powers and privileges committee.

"It is our considered view that Baleka Mbete should be charged because the House collapsed due to the lack of patience and leadership as she concedes that 'I lost it'."

'Pay back the money'

Mbete adjourned the National Assembly on 21 August and threatened to have EFF MPs forcibly removed from the chamber after they chanted "Pay back the money" at President Jacob Zuma, referring to R246m in state funds spent on his private Nkandla homestead in KwaZulu-Natal.

The EFF MPs said they would have nothing further to do with the process in which they risk being suspended from Parliament for up to 14 working days if found guilty of disrupting the legislature.

EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi told Sapa they would be indifferent to being tried in absentia.

"We don't care," he said as they left the venue singing.

Humiliation

Earlier, Malema said Parliament and the ANC want to humiliate the EFF.  

"The embarrassment and humiliation the ANC is seeking to impose on the EFF knows no bounds," Malema said as he argued for disciplinary charges against him and 19 colleagues to be dropped.

He said the committee's ANC members were all potential witnesses to the alleged misconduct, therefore their involvement in the hearing was legally unsound.

He said contradicting Mbete, who had wanted to suspend the 20 EFF MPs, would be "career limiting" for them.

Request

Parliamentary officials and EFF members engaged in a back-and-forth discussion over how to place disciplinary charges to the party's MPs during the special committee meeting.

Parliament's powers and privileges committee had acceded to an EFF request to confirm whether all 20 MPs had read, understood, and had no objection to the charges against them.

The request by Malema came after he interrupted initiator Darryl van Voore in reading out each of the seven charges against EFF chief whip Floyd Shivambu.

However, as proceedings got under way after acceding to the request, the EFF MPs objected to the shortened proceedings, fearing they might not be able to make representations.

'Crisis'

Committee chairperson Lemias Mashile feared conflict over the charges was becoming a "crisis".

"We acceded to a proposal that was time-saving but it looks like it has put us to the rocks," Mashile said.

Van Voore asked if he could make a proposal, which was agreed to.

He said as far as he understood the agreement was that members would be asked if they understood the charges, then Malema would make representations on behalf of all members.

"If that is the correct understanding of the proposal, then I wish to agree there is no crisis," Van Voore said.

He proceeded to ask each member if they had read the charges, understood them, and did not have an objection to the manner in which the charges were being put to them.

Read more on:    anc  |  eff  |  baleka mbete  |  julius malema  |  cape town  |  politics  |  parliament 2014  |  nkandla upgrade

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