DA, IFP heckled at celebrations

2011-04-27 12:49

DA member of parliament Sej Motau was heckled while delivering his speech at the Freedom Day celebrations at the Union Buildings in Pretoria today.

Motau briefly stopped speaking and observed the crowd when the heckling by hundreds of people attending the event grew louder.

Many made the hand signal used at soccer matches to indicate player substitutions, demanding that he move off stage.

However, programme director for the day, Arts and Culture Minister Paul Mashatile took to the podium and interjected, with his first words being: “No, no, no.”

“Please, let’s allow speakers to say a few words and sit. This heckling is taking a lot of our time,” said Mashatile.

The crowd complained, at which Mashatile said Motau would only take one second.

Motau hastily made his concluding remarks, highlighting the importance of having such days like Freedom Day, Youth Day and Reconciliation Day to build and unite the nation, before leaving the stage.

He was not the only victim.

The Inkatha Freedom Party’s Oscar Maseko also had to endure heckling.

Mashatile scolded the crowd for their lack of discipline.

“If you continue howling (sic) people, you are disrespecting me as programme director.”

No other speaker was heckled after that. Instead, they were received warmly by the crowd.

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