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In case of emergency, Mbete can call back MPs

Members of the House gathered for the last time this week marking the end of the nation’s fifth democratic Parliament.

National Assembly Speaker Beleka Mbete in Parliament. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Parliament says the National Assembly might have been dissolved but MPs must remain on call to be summoned back in case of emergency.

Members of the House gathered for the last time this week marking the end of the nation’s fifth democratic Parliament.

Parliament spokesperson Moloto Mothapo said on Friday the National Assembly was still competent to conduct its business until 7 May, a day before the elections.

MPs would only cease to be public representatives on that day.

“The House is dissolved but as the Constitution prescribes or emphasis. The House will continue to be competent to conduct its business until a day before the elections.”

Mothapo said it’s been a long five years filled with inquiries and oversight visits, but whatever work that this Parliament failed to conclude will form part of the legacy reports to be handed over to the sixth Parliament.

He said that Speaker Baleka Mbete also had the power to call MPs back should there be an emergency that requires their attention.

“As the Speaker has of course indicted, that if there is any emergency or an urgent matter that requires either of the two houses of Parliament to meet or to conduct a session, that will happen.”

(Edited by Thapelo Lekabe)