Limpopo Legislature intends opposing a court interdict obtained against it by the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF). Deputy Speaker of the Legislature, Lehlogonolo Masoga at a media briefing yesterday (Wednesday) indicated that the interdict had been obtained against himself as first respondent, Speaker Merriam Ramadwa as second respondent and the Limpopo Legislature as third respondent.
The EFF delivered a knockout punch at the closing of Tuesday’s sitting of the Legislature in Lebowakgomo by announcing that they had, earlier on the the day, obtained an interdict against the African National Congress (ANC) to prevent them from ousting Ramadwa by a motion to be tabled in the Legislature.
When it was time for announcements to be made after the day’s sitting, EFF Provincial Secretary Jossey Buthane announced that an interdict had been served to compel the ruling party to adhere to the rules of the house.
The EFF, Democratic Alliance and Congress of the People walked out of the Legislature last week after the Presiding Officer did not allow them to declare a division in the house and hold a secret ballot, as permitted by the rules of the Legislature.
EFF Provincial Leader, Michael Mathebe said the EFF was not interested in who the ANC appoints as Speaker, but the EFF was seriously concerned about them undermining the rules of the house and taking advantage of their majority in the house by flouting it.
“The Presiding Officer has deliberately chosen to partially apply the rules instead of applying them in totality. Their obsession with the removal of the Speaker has led them to do all sorts of bizarre things including flouting the rules.”
Mathebe said the EFF will protect the decorum and the dignity of the house and not allow the ANC to degenerate it into lawlessness and anarchy. “We have a Constitutional duty to protect this august house from the internal factional battles of the ANC.” He said the abuse of power and the factional battles of the ANC are affecting the smooth running of the Legislature and service delivery.
“We won round one last week and we have won round two today and we are waiting to win round three with a technical knockout. Our message to the ANC is clear: bring it on.”
Masoga said the Legislature would have debated the motion on Tuesday as per the standing rules and of the Constitution but had received a court order from the High Court, with the EFF as applicant to interdict them.
Masoga said proceedings are already underway to vigorously oppose the court order, and as the issue is sub judice, could not say anything further except that he as presiding officer belief the legislature has exercised their Constitutional right and will defend his ruling.
Story: NELIE ERASMUS