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Parly Committee denies EFF’s request to postpone hearing for members

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Parliament’s Powers and Privileges Committee denied the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) request for the postponement of the disciplinary hearing against 10 of its members.

The EFF members face charges related to their disruption of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s budget vote speech on June 9 and 10, 2022.

The EFF had approached the court seeking an urgent interdict of the proceedings, pending the outcome of their High Court challenge against the disciplinary process.

The disciplinary hearing, scheduled for two days, is proceeding despite the EFF’s plea for a postponement.

All affected EFF members have pleaded not guilty from the start of the proceedings. Their legal representative, Advocate Mfesane kaSiboto, called for a postponement, citing the ongoing High Court challenge.

The EFF seeks the appearance of the Speaker of the National Assembly, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, to be cross-examined about her decisions during Ramaphosa’s budget vote speech.

EFF MPs disrupt President Ramaphosa’s Budget Vote

‘No legal basis for objections’

Advocate Tanya Golden, the initiator of the charges, argued against any suspension of the proceedings, stating there was no legal basis for such objections.

Acting chairperson of the committee, Manketsi Tlhape, outlined the procedure for members pleading guilty or not guilty.

Despite objections raised by the EFF, the majority of committee members decided to proceed with the hearing as scheduled. African National Congress (ANC) MPs Zola Mlenzana and Doris Dlakude firmly rejected the suspension of the process.

EFF MP Mbuyiseni Ndlozi argued in favor of natural justice, emphasising the need for the Speaker’s testimony and calling for the immediate dismissal of charges based on procedural concerns.

The first witness to be questioned in the disciplinary hearing was Secretary to the National Assembly, Masibulele Xaso.

 

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