EFF disrupts Gauteng's Sopa

EFF members called David Makhura a liar five times as he read through his speech.

Gauteng Premier David Makhura giving his State of the Province Address on 23 February 2015. Picture: Vumani Mkhize/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - There have been repeated attempts by Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) members of the provincial legislature (MPLs) to disrupt Gauteng Premier David Makhura's State of the Province Address (Sopa).

The party's members repeatedly raised points of order as Makhura tried to complete his 38-page speech.

EFF caucus leader Mandisa Mashego called Makhura a liar and asked speaker Ntombi Mekgwe to be more mature after Mekgwe denied the party's request to ask questions.

"This is very important for the democratic engagement, we are not here to sit and be ornaments, and just listen."

Picture: EFF members raising points of order during Makhura's Sopa.

But Mekgwe said she cannot take any questions during the address as there will be a debate on the speech next week.

"Honourable Mashego, if you respect yourself, you'll respect the house and respect other people."

Another EFF MPL also accused the speaker of deliberately switching off his microphone when he tried to ask a question.

As the premier continued, the EFF accused him of delivering a speech based on incorrect information.

Mashego said, "The premier is not allowed to read out a string of lies as he did last year."

BIG ANNOUNCEMENTS

Among some of the biggest announcements, the premier said Centurion would become the new gateway of Africa, as the new offices for the African Union (AU) and United Nations (UN) would be in the area.

He added that partnerships with the private sector on the African Gateway project was a major boost for the economy.

He said the Gauteng government had met with more than 50,000 entrepreneurs in 65 townships and had committed R150 million in the current financial year.

On the controversial e-tolling system, Makhura said they were trying to simplify the payment system to make it easy for road users to pay.