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Northern Cape
Mar 7 2013 2:08AM
 
Legislature walkout slammed
Acting Northern Cape premier Grizelda Cjiekella. Picture: Supplied
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Zandisile Luphahla

The provincial legislature has condemned the walkout by opposition members during acting Premier Grizelda Cjiekella’s reply on Tuesday to the state of the province address she delivered last Friday.

Spokesperson for the speaker’s office, Mpho Masina, said although the business of the day was not interrupted by the walkout, the legislature deems the conduct by the opposition as undermining the decorum of the house.

Both Cope and DA members of the legislature (MPLs) walked out during Cjiekella’s response after the speaker Boeboe van Wyk shot down motions raised by Cope leader in the legislature, Fred Wyngaard.

“The legislature condemns the behaviour of the opposition as this impedes on participatory democracy and the voice of the electorate.

“The speaker did not shoot down motions raised by the opposition haphazardly or irregularly.

“Both members of the opposition as well as members from the ruling party raised motions without notices.

“Some of the motions were not properly tabled, hence the speaker noted the members’ concerns,” said Masina.

She said Wyngaard’s behaviour was deemed “unparliamentary”.

“According to Rule 108(1) (b), ‘the presiding officer may order a member to leave the house immediately for the remainder of the day’s sitting if the presiding officer is of the opinion that the member is in contempt or is disregarding the authority of the chair’.”

Masina also denied that all opposition MPLs walked out.

“It is also important to mention that only members of Cope and not all members of the opposition, as stated, followed Wyngaard when he was ordered to leave the house,” said Masina.

She appealed to the media to give a true reflection of proceedings during any house sitting or debate.

“Members of the public are also invited to all house sittings,” she said.

Cope and DA were not available for comment.

zandisilel@thenewage.co.za

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