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.
This was after Zuma was booed by the opposition in parliament, during a speech on Tueasday after paying back some 540,000 USD, of the public money spent to spruce up his private residence in Nkandla.
“We can not allow the President to speak in this place. If you want to allow it, know that you are acting outside the constitution and we will force you to make it stop,” said Julius Malema, leader of the EFF opposition party.
“The president is not here to be ridiculed. He’s here to answer questions from the parliament. He stood before the parliament to answer questions,” member of the ruling ANC party Jackson Mthembu intervened.
“We will leave the room because we are not willing to listen to a criminal. But we’ll wait outside. When the criminal has finished talking, we’ll take care of Parliamentary Affairs. We’re just going to the bathroom to avoid criminal . We will return when the criminal is gone. Thank you,” quipped Malema.
The country’s constitutional court had in March ordered Zuma to pay back the 16 million USD spent in upgrading his home. And after the recent instalment, it’s apparent that Zuma is not yet going to have an easy ride, and the ruling ANC party continues to be weighed down by his scandals.