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EFF 'has to disrupt' Sona

The EFF's Fana Mokoena says they are not the ones breaking Parliament's rules.

FILE: EFF supporters sing and dance at the party's inaugural conference in Bloemfontein. Picture: Govan Whittles/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The Economic Freedom Fighters ( EFF) says it has to disrupt President Jacob Zuma's State of the Nation Address ( Sona), as National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete has refused to grant its request for a special sitting of Parliament.

Mbete has appealed to the party not to disrupt Zuma's speech saying it's not the right forum for the president to answer questions about his Nkandla homestead.

The EFF's Fana Mokoena says they are not the ones breaking Parliament's rules.

"This isn't a disruption but we are implementing rule 116 which means that he has to continue where he left off."

He said the party isn't concerned that the opposition parties who have worked with the EFF on the Nkandla issue don't want to disrupt Parliament.

"The coalition works when it works and when it doesn't, it doesn't - that is the nature of relationships amongst political parties."

Mokoena also says the speaker would be "overstepping her boundaries" if she calls in the police again.

At the same time, Parliament's top officials have warned that questions to President Zuma when he delivers his Sona will be out of order.

National Assembly secretary Masibulele Xaso says, "the rule is clear that a member may not rise unless recognised by the presiding officer. There is no precedent for a member asking a question during the Sona."

He says any points of order will have to relate strictly to procedural matters.

Officials have refused to speculate about the possibility of the state occasion being disrupted by Malema and his EFF.