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#Sona2017 marred by chaos, insults & violence

EFF MPs fought back as they were forcefully ejected from the chamber while the DA's Mmusi Maimane led a walkout.

Security officials remove EFF members from the National Assembly after they disrupted President Zuma’s 2017 State of the Nation Address. Picture: AFP.

CAPE TOWN – Chaos, violence and insults have once again marred President Jacob Zuma’s State of the Nation Address (Sona).

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) Members of Parliament (MPs) fought back as they were forcefully ejected from the chamber after holding up proceedings for nearly an hour, accusing Zuma of being a 'constitutional delinquent'.

The Constitutional Court found that Zuma breached his oath of office in its findings on the Nkandla scandal.

Parliament was also found guilty of failing to hold him to account.

The EFF’s position that the president is unfit to hold office set the stage for Thursday night's showdown.

[WATCH] #Sona2017 descends into chaos

National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete warned the EFF to leave the house but they refused.

She then asked that Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) leader Mangosutho Buthelezi be moved out of the way.

EFF MPs greeted Zuma’s arrival in the chamber by calling him a thief, countered by African National Congress (ANC) MPs chanting 'ANC'.

After an hour, Mbete ordered in Parliament’s security to remove the red berets.

“We see honourable members using their hats to harm others.”

The Democratic Alliance (DA) walked out after accusing Zuma and the ANC of breaking Parliament and the Constitution, while ANC MPs accused leader Mmusi Maimane of being a racist sell-out

Maimane says he’ll be going to court over the use of force in Parliament.

[WATCH] 'Rotten to the core!' - Julius Malema in full flight at #Sona2017

ZUMA FINALLY SPEAKS

Zuma finally delivered his State of the Nation Address, concentrating on the economy, wage talks, Eskom and the national minimum wage, saying that there needs to be radical social economic transformation.

Zuma said there needs to be radical change.

“We need fundamental change in the structure, systems, institutions and patterns of ownership, management and control of the economy.”

He said white households are earning far more than their black counterparts.

Added to this, ownership needs to be corrected with the JSE an example of white dominance.

“In terms of the 2015-16 information submitted to the Employment Equity Commission, the representation of whites at top management level amounted to 72%, whilst African representation was at 10%.”

He said that better economic growth is expected this year.

“Indications are that we have entered a period of recovery. We anticipate an economic growth rate of 1.3% in 2017.”

The president said that the minimum wage will also help many households.

“We congratulate the deputy president and Nedlac for this milestone and wish them well for work that still needs to be done.”

WATER SHORTAGES
He added that the drive to stop water leaks had led to job creation.

“About 10,000 unemployed youth are being trained plumbers, artisans and water agents. More will be recruited this year to reach the total of 15,000.”

ESIDIMENI
He then turned to the Esidimeni tragedy where 94 patients died.

“Compatriots we are deeply distressed by the deaths of so many psychiatric patients in Gauteng.”

Zuma said plans are underway to make sure this didn’t happen again.

“We welcome the recommendation of the Health Ombudsman that there is an urgent need to review the National Health Act and the Mental Health Act with a view that certain powers and functions revert back to the Minister of Health.”

[WATCH] “F#ck you!” Sona 2017 descends into chaotic screaming match

[GALLERY] Sona 2017 in pictures

All the action near the parliamentary precinct ahead of President Zuma's State of the Nation Address.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)