Politicians debate weighty issues

2013-06-14 08:38
Lindiwe Mazibuko (Werner Beukes, Sapa)

Lindiwe Mazibuko (Werner Beukes, Sapa)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town - Parliament is known for debating weighty issues.

But the DA feels the ANC has taken this too far in literally commenting on the size of its parliamentary leader, Lindiwe Mazibuko.

On Thursday, the ANC indicated that MP John Jeffrey would apologise for comments he made about Mazibuko.

DA chief whip Sandy Kalyan on Thursday wrote to her ANC counterpart, Mathole Motshekga, to request that Jeffrey and fellow ANC MP Buti Manamela be disciplined for sexist and chauvinist comments directed at Mazibuko.

During a parliamentary budget vote on Wednesday, Jeffrey said: “While the honourable Mazibuko may be a person of substantial weight, her stature is questionable”.


Manamela’s comment was a reference to Mazibuko’s dress sense, saying that if she was arrested by the fashion police, the DA would blame President Jacob Zuma.

The DA was livid at Jeffrey and Manamela’s comments, saying they were “unparliamentary” and “a direct attack on the integrity of a fellow member”.

“Dr Motshekga, who has rightfully called for more decorum in the house, should hang his head in shame at this disgraceful display by his colleagues. He must now do everything possible to bring these two MPs to book,” said Kalyan.

In a statement, Motshekga claimed Jeffrey’s comment was meant as a pun and “had more to do with her influence and power associated with the position she holds than her physical weight”.

“Jeffery has carefully reflected on the ambiguity of the statement and accepts that they may have been understood to refer to Mazibuko’s physical outlook.

“In this regard, he will unconditionally withdraw the statement when the presiding officer gives him an opportunity to do so in the House and apologise to Mazibuko,” said Motshekga.

He rejected the claim that Manamela’s reference to Mazibuko’s dress style was sexist or chauvinistic, saying that she was dressed inappropriately, showing a lack of respect to the debate and the decorum of the House.

'DA did it first'

However, while the ANC Women’s League said Parliament was no place for tit-for-tat games, it said the DA had done it first and had not yet apologised.

“We commend Jeffrey for acknowledging that his comments may have been misunderstood and for apologising,” said ANCWL spokesperson Troy Martens.

She said that DA leader and Western Cape Premier Helen Zille was yet to apologise for reportedly calling ANC MPL Zodwa Magwaza an elephant, neither had Theuns Botha, who likened Lynne Brown to a hippopotamus.

Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  buti manamela  |  mathole motshekga  |  lindiwe mazibuko  |  politics

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Partner Content
How data is changing investments

Technological disruption is rife in many spheres of business and given the quantity of data available, it’s no surprise that the way in which asset managers work is also changing fast.

Behind the sparkle

Alluring, beautiful and timeless - diamonds are some of the most sought after gems in the world and are a true testament of everlasting brilliance. Let us take you behind the sparkle to show you the history behind this coveted jewel.


Chocolate can be fatal for dogs

Chocolate contains a substance called theobromine that is similar to caffeine and is toxic to dogs at certain levels.



Spider-man star's adorable relationship with his dog
Do you know what you are feeding your dog?
Watch: Proof animals have souls
Would you clone your pet?
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.