EFF back in the House after suspension

2016-05-11 15:25
(<a href= ‘https://twitter.com/RanjeniM’>Ranjeni Munusamy</a> via Twitter)

(Ranjeni Munusamy via Twitter)

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Cape Town - EFF MPs were back in Parliament on Wednesday after being thrown out and suspended last week for shouting and refusing to listen to an “illegitimate” President Jacob Zuma.

They vowed to keep up their call for Zuma to resign and were limbering up for his next appearance in the House on 17 May.

To groans and chuckles, chairperson Mmatlala Grace Boroto acknowledged the presence of Economic Freedom Fighters MP Nazier Paulsen in his red workman's jacket.

''The withdrawal of the EFF from the house has come to an end,'' Boroto announced at the Department of Public Service and Administration’s budget vote debate in the old National Assembly.

Unbowed after being thrown out last week, Paulsen kept up a running lone heckle with ANC MPs. EFF deputy president and Chief Whip Floyd Shivambu sat with him briefly.

Paulsen's first point of order was a complaint that ANC MPs across the way ''are showing me vulgar things over there''.

When the department’s Deputy Minister Ayanda Dlodlo praised the Constitution, Paulsen quipped: ''It's no use if you are going to violate it.''

Taken to task for not calling Zuma ''Honorable'', Paulsen relented and said, ''Ok. Mr Jacob Zuma, president of the ANC''.

‘Incapable of delivering services’

In his speech, Paulsen blamed government for service delivery protests.

“Why the country is burning is because you are incapable of delivering services to all those people.”

He told Public Service and Administration Minister Ngoako Ramatlhodi, who was making his first Budget Vote speech for the department, that the public service was incapable of doing what was needed to build the country.

At times shouting through angry retorts by ANC MPs, Paulsen blamed the government's reliance on consultants and contractors for much of its failures.

EFF spokesperson Mbuyisen Ndlozi said: ''We are ready for the 17th. He [Zuma] must not come. He must resign before the 17th.''

He said nobody was injured during last week’s scuffles, during which a glass of water went flying as protection officers pulled and pushed shouting EFF MPs out of the National Assembly.

The following day, most opposition MPs boycotted Zuma’s reply to his budget vote speech debate.

When Zuma appears on 17 May, questions to him are expected to include one from the African Christian Democratic Party on an apparent lack of trust in the judiciary. The African Independent Congress would ask him about recent protests and demonstrations.

Read more on:    eff  |  cape town  |  parliament 2016

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