Apparently, SA National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete has decided to heed the advice of President Zuma to ‘put her house in order’ as she told Members of Parliament (MPs) to reflect on the best ways to restore order to the House.
She disclosed to the Parliament while introducing Parliament’s budget vote on Thursday, that she wants to meet political party leaders to discuss the concerns of President Jacob Zuma at the end of his budget vote about the unruly and ’embarrassing’ behaviour of some of the MPs.
National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete admitted that she agrees with Zuma when he says the house is not in order.
She Described the atmosphere in Parliament as a challenging one most times‚ adding that the citizens expected more from the members of the house and to put more efforts to stop the disorderly and unruly behaviour in the house.
“So I urge all members to reflect on how best to return the House to the convivial‚ co-operative atmosphere‚ I know all of us would prefer.”
Mbete added that there is hope and she was convinced that with the rate of commitment observed during previous engagements‚ “we are bound to find each other in terms of how we provide leadership to those that elected us”.
However, opposition MPs especially members of the Democratic Alliance (DA) and Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) have on several occasions pushed the blame on the honourable speaker of the house.
In his opinion, DA Chief Whip John Steenhuisen says, “It’s become a playground for the executive where they are mollycoddled and shielded by a speaker who cannot distinguish between her role as custodian of the institution and her chairpersonship of the African National Congress (ANC).”
On the other hand, EFF MP Thembinkosi Rawula targeted the Parliament’s presiding officers saying, “Parliament is failing to defend and protect the Constitution.” Adding that Zuma, who his party refers to as an ‘illegitimate president’, is not welcome in Parliament.
National Assembly Speaker also observed that the unruly behaviour displayed by the MPs only manifest when they (MPs) are aware that the cameras are on to them, they get hyperactive due to ‘sugar rush’ and misbehave.