EFF disorder threat to Sona

2015-02-11 00:00

CAPE TOWN — President Jacob Zuma doesn’t have to lose sleep over Thursday’s long awaited State of the Nation address, said chairperson of the National Council of Provinces (NCoP) Thandi Modise.

She was speaking yesterday amid EFF threats to disrupt the president’s address as the nation and international media watches. Modise said she and the Speaker for the National Assembly Baleka Mbete, who will alternately share the chairing of the joint session of the assembly and ­council, will ensure the members stick to Parliamentary rules.

EFF leader Julius Malema is reportedly planning to raise a point of order during the president’s speech to pose a question. The question will be when President Jacob Zuma plans to pay back part of the millions in public funds spent to improve on his private estate at Nkandla, as was ­recommended by the public protector. This after Zuma was led out of the ­assembly on August 21 after he failed to answer questions on the ­#PayBackTheMoney debacle.

But in an unexpected move, the ­presidency yesterday issued written ­answers to questions that Zuma will not answer on Thursday. And deputy speaker Lechesa Tsenoli said the rules that allow questions during a session by the NA or NCoP will not apply on Thursday.

“Points of order may also only be raised if it is about procedure or privilege, it may not be about anything else. We don’t ­expect the members to ask questions. They are informed during their induction how a State of the Nation address ­proceeds, so we don’t expect questions. If not, the speaker has the authority to ­ensure order in the House.”

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