#SONA2017: A fist fight, screaming of delinquency and horses before Zuma even speaks


As expected, the opening of parliament on Thursday evening was off the hook. It started even before President Jacob Zuma took the podium. First, the DA’s John Steenhuisen asked the Chair of the house to take a moment of silence to commemorate the deaths of 94 mentally ill patients after they were moved from Life Esidimeni to unlicensed NGOs. Then the EFF’s Julius Malema and ‘Terror’ Lekota called Zuma to step down. But there was more. Here’s a quick selection of the madness while Zuma was waiting to talk.

1. The DA’s call for a moment’s silence for the 94 mentally ill patients who died in 2016. Speaker Baleka Mbete refused, without reason. She suggested it could be done next week.

2. When Julius Malema called out Zuma for being “an incorrigible man, rotten to the core.” Malema was on top form. His overall also looked tailored. After Malema was done, Cope leader Mosiuoa ‘Terror’ Lekota went on to call the president a “scoundrel”.

3. When Mmusi Maimane agreed that the Constitution had been violated, but stated that the State of the Nation Address should continue so we can “get back to the people’s business.” Trying to be the voice of reason, or ignoring the real questions?

4. The people’s bae, Mbuyiseni Ndlozi, said he hadn’t invited the protection services guarding the door. He called Zuma a constitutional delinquent and a criminal. He specifically asked for the two guards to get out, along with Zuma.

5. Julius Malema’s accusations against Baleka Mbete were hectic! He accused her of being partisan and said that President Zuma used her and dumped her. “You were suggested as the next president of the ANC but then you went home and slaughtered a cow!”

6. Julius Malema and the rest of the EFF were thrown out of Parliament, pretty violently, on Baleka Mbete’s orders.

7. A literal fistfight ensued between the protective services and EFF members. Absolutely violent, and absolutely undemocratic. The EFF was kicked out. The DA walked out. Members in the gallery gassed. Grown adults clapping and shouting at other adults to “vokoff”. An absolute mess.

Zuma was pretty much left to address the ANC alone.


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