“We’ve been waiting for the head of state for a very long time and there seems to be problem with the water service,” national spokesman Mbuyiseni Ndlozi said.
“I am very thirsty. There is a service delivery crisis here in Parliament.”
He asked Speaker Baleka Mbete to get the water service running again so that they could get water.
This came after many journalists attending the state-of-the-nation address in Cape Town complained on Twitter that once they had entered the House they could no longer use their cellphones.
MPs were also heard complaining about the jamming.
Around 25 journalists launched a protest in the press gallery of the over not having any cellphone reception to file their stories.
“Bring back the signal, bring back the signal,” they chanted, waving their cellphones at an electronic black box believed to be jamming signal.
Sound cut on Parly TV feed
The sound on the Parliamentary feed to the National Assembly was switched off while the House adjourned to sort out the jamming of cellphone signals.
Just after President Jacob Zuma arrived in the House, where he would deliver his eighth state-of-the-nation address, opposition parties called on Speaker Baleka Mbete to re-establish the signal.
Democratic Alliance chief whip John Steenhuisen stood up saying he was rising on a “rule of order”.
“I submit this is in direct violation of the… Constitution,” he said.
The DA was supported by the Economic Freedom Fighters and the Freedom Front Plus.
Mbete said she would make sure the secretary of Parliament look into the issue.
Zuma was supposed to start his address at 7pm but proceedings were delayed.
The signal seemed to have been restored by 7.20pm.