South African President Jacob Zuma complained on Tuesday about being abused by opposition parties whenever he addressed parliament and asked the House Speaker to take action to address the issue.
“Each time when I come here, I am abused by members of your parliament, because instead of answering questions I sit here being called a criminal, a thief. I think this house must do something about it,” he said in parliament.
In a rebuke that hit Zuma financially and politically, the Constitutional Court ordered him in March to return some of the $16 million spent on enhancing his private residence, triggering claims by opposition parties that he should resign. Zuma denied he had acted dishonestly over the upgrade.
Leftist party Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) which dragged him to court after his refusal to heed to a recommendation by the Public protector to pay back the money walked out of the sitting, refusing to be addressed by Zuma.
“We’ll come back when the criminal is gone, we are not going to listen to the criminal,” EFF leader Julius Malema said.
— EFF Official Account (@EFFSouthAfrica) September 13, 2016
The Party’s Parliamentary chief Whip Floyd Shivambu had earlier through a letter to speaker of Parliament Baleka Mbete demanded that the Zuma be stopped from addressing the national assembly because he lacks legitimacy as a president.
“We write to you to demand that you must urgently prevent Mr. Jacob Zuma from answering questions on the 13th of September 2016 because he has lost the constitutional right and statue to respond to anything as the president of South Africa” The letter reads in opening