13 June 2019

South Africa: Modise Condemns Parliamentary Scuffle

National Assembly Speaker Thandi Modise has denounced a scuffle that broke out between Members of Parliament during an induction programme on Wednesday.

Parliament has since announced that the incident would be investigated to avert any recurrence in future.

In a Parliamentary statement issued on Wednesday, Modise denounced the conduct, saying it was unbecoming and uncharacteristic.

"The Speaker, who was in attendance but not chairing the session, took to the podium and appealed to Members to adhere to the decorum and respect the authority of the Chairperson of the Session.

"She stressed that while it was normal and acceptable for difference of views to arise from time to time, it was inappropriate to allow emotions to get the better of public representatives in such fashion," Parliamentary spokesperson Moloto Mothapo said in the statement.

Other than the unfortunate brief incident, he added, the week-long induction and orientation programme, in both the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces, is proceeding well and will conclude on Thursday.

The programme is intended to ensure capacity for MPs to discharge their Constitutional roles and responsibilities as elected representatives. These programmes cover their constitutional functions, legislative processes, House rules and policies, amongst others.

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