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Protest forces South Africa President to suspend speech

Protest forces South Africa President to suspend speech”

Own Correspondent|South African President Cyril Ramaphosa was due to deliver his fourth State of the Nation Address in the National Assembly on Thursday but was unable to do so after almost an hour of disruptions by the vibrant opposition Economic Freedom Fighters.

The EFF demanded F.W. De Klerk, South Africa's last apartheid-era president, who shared a Nobel Peace Prize with Nelson Mandela for their efforts to end white rule, be ejected from parliament accusing him of being "unrepentant". Malema says he has blood on his hands.

Inkatha's Buthelezi suggested a vote get taken as to whether De Klerk be allowed to remain or not.

Malema said it was incorrect for an invitation to have been sent to De Klerk because the people of Boipatong were turning in their graves after what the former president did to them.

"It is an insult to those who died and were tortured during apartheid under instructions of De Klerk".

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Modise ruled against Malema's submission, saying the special sitting of the two houses of parliament had been called to give President Ramaphosa the opportunity to address the nation. It is a convention that all former presidents who are still alive are invited to this sitting.

After almost an hour of disruption, the National Assembly speaker Thandi Modise temporarily suspended proceedings, telling the EFF "when you think you have unlimited freedom of speech to infringe on the rights of others, that is a disruption". 89% was a clear that they were against the EFF and wanted Ramaphosa to proceed with the Sona.

There shouldn't be a situation where the point of orders are made by a party so that they can abuse the proceedings, he adds.

EFF members got rowdy when their microphones were later switched off after the president had started speaking, but they chanted, interrupting him for a second time and delaying his speech for about an hour.



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