Where is Baleka Mbete? Sick Speaker stays away from Parliament

2014-08-10 10:45

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National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete has not presided over a sitting of the House once since the start of Parliament’s new term and has not presided once over the House.

Mbete, who was redeployed from Luthuli House back to the position of Speaker in May, has only been to Parliament three times?–?when she was elected Speaker, for President Zuma’s State of the Nation address and to present the legislature’s budget vote to the National Assembly.

At no point has she taken her seat in the Speaker’s chair.

After the budget vote, she immediately went back on sick leave and has been at home ever since. Word doing the rounds in Parliament is that she is quite ill. This has been confirmed by senior officials.

Others say she is exhausted because of her taxing election campaign schedule.

Neither her private office, Parliament nor the ANC were willing to comment this week.

Parliamentary spokesperson Luzuko Jacobs first referred queries to Mbete’s private office for comment. Her private secretary, Zanele Hlatshwayo, referred all queries back to Parliament.

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