Mbete denies DA request to reconvene Parly to address Eskom power crisis

The official opposition wanted MPs to return from recess so as to establish an ad hoc committee to look into the energy crisis.

National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete at a meeting of the chief whips of political parties to discuss Thursday's motion of no confidence against President Zuma.

CAPE TOWN - A request by the Democratic Alliance (DA) for Parliament to reconvene to try and address the power crisis has been denied.

National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete has refused the request.

The official opposition wanted MPs to return from recess so as to establish an ad hoc committee to look into the energy crisis.

Mbete says that an extensive inquiry was conducted last year and the relevant parliamentary committees can take up the matter if needed.

DA chief whip John Steenhuisen says that Mbete is taking her instructions directly from Luthuli House and is acting in the interests of the African National Congress (ANC).

"It is very clear that the executive has lost control of this issue and are unable to resolve the matter sufficiently. Therefore it is important that as the people's legislature that Parliament starts to play a far more active roll in it."

He adds that it is a calamity that deserves urgent attention.

"We should be sitting around the clock - either an ad hoc committee and in plenary - trying to address these issues that are affecting the South African economy, affecting jobs and affecting the livelihoods of far too many people."