Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi spoke in defiance following a near-physical altercation on Tuesday between EFF MPs and those of the Democratic Alliance (DA).
The incident included Malema angrily approaching DA MP Ghaleb Cachalia and confronting him while waving his hand in his face, EFF MP Godrich Gardee also charging in Cachalia’s direction, pointing his finger; and Malema and Ndlozi having to restrain another EFF MP, Marshall Dlamini, who grabbed hold of DA MP Denis Joseph’s arm in a heated exchange.
Responding to a report on the incident by the Sowetan, Ndlozi justified his party’s actions.
“The clash with liberals is permanent. The left turn is not a turn, but the actual main road to crushing their ideological fake dance,” he said.
Ndlozi maintained a longstanding tradition by ignoring The Citizen’s questions on whether or not he was justifying his party’s behaviour.
The altercation in parliament occurred after Malema introduced a debate about insourcing in the government.
Presiding officer Madala Ntombela had to call for order.
“Honourable members, the behaviour is unacceptable, please,” he said, adding that all MPs were responsible for the decorum of the House.
DA chief whip John Steenhuisen asked Ntombela if he would investigate the incident.
“What has just happened here is a gross violation of the rules of parliament,” Steenhuisen said, as Cachalia nodded his head.
“It is not acceptable for members to be threatened the way they have been threatened,” he added.
Ntombela said he would investigate the fracas.
“I don’t know what must be investigated,” said a smiling Ndlozi. “Because people were talking to each other here. Do we investigate people talking to each other these days?”
Earlier during the sitting, after EFF chief whip Floyd Shivambu had passed through the DA benches to his seat, DA MP Cameron Mackenzie rose on a point of order, claiming Shivambu had sworn – using the f-word – at a DA MP.
Shivambu denied this.
Earlier this year, Dlamini was seen on video slapping a police officer in civilian clothing as MPs were leaving the National Assembly building on February 7 after President Cyril Ramaphosa had delivered his state of the nation address.
A charge of assault is currently being heard in a Cape Town court.
Last week, the National Prosecuting Authority confirmed it would prosecute Malema and Ndlozi on charges of assault after they allegedly assaulted a policeman during the funeral of struggle icon Winnie Madikizela-Mandela.
The incident was caught on CCTV and the officer subsequently opened a case against the two.
Last week, parliament’s rules committee decided the EFF MPs who stormed Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan’s budget speech earlier this year would be referred to the powers, privileges, and immunities committee.
(Compiled by Daniel Friedman.)