#Sona2017: EFF MPs delay start of Zuma address

The EFF's Julius Malema and Godrich Gardee in their points of order raised issues including the Constitutional Court ruling on Nkandla.

Members of the EFF disrupt proceedings at the State of the Nation Address on Thursday, 9 February 2017. Picture: YouTube  Screengrab.

JOHANNESBURG – Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema and his caucus have risen on several points of order, delaying the start of President Jacob Zuma’s State of the Nation Address.

As Zuma stood up, an EFF MP also rose with him and raised a point of order.

Malema and EFF MP Godrich Gardee, in their points of order, raised issues including the Constitutional Court ruling on the Nkandla matter and rules of the house that Zuma has broken.

“The President was found to be in contempt of the Constitution,” Gardee said.

There was speculation Malema would not attend President Zuma’s Sona when the EFF said he was on study leave.

But the party’s commander-in-chief led his caucus into the Chamber.

Dressed in their trademark red overalls and helmets the red berets livened up the Chamber.

The EFF’s Floyd Shivambu told the House that security police were armed with cable ties and what he called biological weapons.

“They even have these cable ties which they want to use to tie down members of the EFF here in Parliament but besides that, they’ve got injections as well. They want to inject EFF MPs with biological contents that are going to deactivate them for the rest of the day.”

President Zuma then tried to address the House. However, Gardee interrupted him, saying the National Assembly had failed to enforce remedial action against the President.

“The point of order is that the president is in breach of his oath of office; failed to uphold, defend and promote the Constitution.”

Malema then interjected.

“You are repeating the same mistake. Mr Zuma has collapsed his own right to address us here. Mr President, 441 soldiers will never be able to protect you. Your problem is not outside, your problem is here and there is no soldier here.”

The NCOP Speaker Thandi Modise dismissed this, saying the matter had been dealt with.

“If members of the National Assembly wish to carry on with this matter, please do it when it is our own siting and at your own time.”

However, Cope’s Mosiua Lekota fired back, refereeing to Zuma as a “scoundrel”.“

Madame Speaker, in English it is called a scoundrel and in our mother tongue it is called ‘lemenemene’.

WATCH: Julius Malema & EFF MPs delay start of Sona

Meanwhile, the Democratic Alliance MPs have requested that there be a moment of silence the 94 Life Esidimeni patients who passed away under the Gauteng Department of Health’s watch.

The DA’s John Steenhuizen said: “The request is that we believe it will be appropriate for his House to recognise this in tragedy and suffering and to mark it with a moment of silence and to reflect that it will never happen again in South Africa. We are asking you Madame Speaker to allow us to do so.”

The Health Ombudsman revealed that 94 psychiatric patients died after being transferred to 27 NGOs, which were not licensed to take care of the mentally-ill.