Cape Town – An independent investigator reportedly found no evidence of gender-based violence or sexual harassment during the removal of Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) MPs from Parliament during President Cyril Ramaphosa’s budget vote debate in June.
According to The Citizen, EFF members refused to let Ramaphosa deliver his budget vote speech. They heckled him and other African National Congress (ANC) MPs.
Security was ordered by National Assembly Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula to remove them from their seats in Parliament.
Scuffles then broke out between the red berets and security officials.
EFF chief whip Floyd Shivambu filed a complaint against the Parliamentary Protection Services (PPS), alleging sexual harassment of the party’s female MPs, according to IOL.
Mapisa-Nqakula then appointed Advocate Elizabeth Baloyi-Mere to investigate.
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Times Live reported that Baloyi-Mere presented the investigation’s findings to Parliament on Friday.
She ruled out GBV and sexual harassment in the scuffles between MPs and the PPS officials.
“In her report, Adv Baloyi-Mere ruled out GBV and sexual harassment in the scuffles between MPs and the PPS officials during the forceful removal of the disruptive members from the House on 9 and 10 June. However, the report found that the removal of the disruptive members by PPS was characterised by violence on both sides.
“The MPs refused to comply with the instructions of the speaker or ignored the speaker when it was clear from the rules of the National Assembly that when members are requested to leave the chamber they should do so consistent with the conduct expected of them as per their titles of ‘honourable members’,” said Parliamentary spokesperson Moloto Mothapo, as quoted by the report.
Baloyi-Mere suggested that the speaker convene a meeting with all chief whips to ensure that all public representatives follow the rules of parliament.
She also advocated for an adequate number of female PPS personnel to be present during any given parliamentary session.
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Picture: Twitter/ @EFFSouthAfrica
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Compiled by Sinothando Siyolo