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EFF undermining Parliament: ANC

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The Economic Freedom Fighters were committed to undermining Parliament through chaotic conduct, the ANC said on Wednesday.

“The African National Congress once more expresses its concern about the conduct of EFF Members of Parliament in the National Assembly today,” national spokesperson Zizi Kodwa said in a statement.

“Their refusal to abide by Parliamentary rules of having to withdraw reckless accusations when ordered by the Speaker of the National Assembly smack of gross disregard for the institution and what it represents.”

It was evident that their conduct was consistent with their failed attempt to unseat Speaker Baleka Mbete, which was aimed at undermining the foundation of South Africa’s democracy.

“EFF is committed to undermine Parliament through a chaotic conduct which fails to appreciate that all members of Parliament represent constituencies bigger than their mere membership,” Kodwa said.

“In their chaotic conduct they are undermining and disrespecting the South African electorate.”

The ANC commended Mbete for her firmness in disallowing the EFF to make Parliament unworkable.

“Her firmness has restored the integrity of the House and respectability of its members,” Kodwa said.

Earlier on Wednesday, EFF leader Julius Malema and his Chief Whip Floyd Shivambu were ordered to leave the National Assembly after accusing Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa of “murdering” 34 Marikana mineworkers.

Malema went on the offensive in the National Assembly while Ramaphosa was answering questions related to the 2012 killing of 34 Lonmin mineworkers in Marikana.

“Why is the deputy president not accepting responsibility for the death of 34 mineworkers that died? You killed them because you are driven by profit,” Malema said.

“You are the one who wrote e-mails and instigated the killing of 34 people. Your hands have got blood… of people who died in Marikana.”

Mbete demanded Malema withdraw the statement, as it was unparliamentary. Malema refused, prompting Mbete to order him to leave the House. Shivambu was ordered out after he repeated Malema’s sentiments.

Malema’s question to Ramaphosa about former mineral resources minister Susan Shabangu’s testimony before the Farlam Commission of Inquiry that the deputy president had lied under oath went unanswered.

Ramaphosa, who sat on the Lonmin board during the unrest, testified last month that Shabangu had agreed with him that the unrest at the platinum mining house was a “criminal act” and not just a labour dispute. Shabangu disputed this two weeks later.

The Farlam Commission of Inquiry was appointed to probe the deaths of 44 people during a violent strike at Lonmin’s platinum mining operations at Marikana, near Rustenburg, North West, in August 2012.

Thirty-four people, mostly striking mineworkers, were killed by police, about 70 wounded, and 250 arrested on August 16, 2012. Ten people, including two policemen and two Lonmin security guards, were killed in the previous week. SAPA


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