Johannesburg – Speaker of the National Assembly Baleka Mbete has called Economic Freedom Fighters leader Julius Malema a cockroach and warned ANC party members to prepare for war, but Malema has struck back saying he thinks Mbete is calling for his assassination, reports the Sunday Times.
Malema said on Saturday: “I think Baleka is calling for my assassination. If I am killed tomorrow people must know I was killed by Baleka and the ANC.”
He went on to say: “We know what happened to people who were called cockroaches in Rwanda. I am not scared. I am not used by third forces. Member of the EFF must also ready themselves [to fight back].”
According to the Sunday Times, Mbete was speaking at the ANCs North West provincial conference in Mafikeng on Saturday and also reportedly warned party members that they should prepare themselves a for an onslaught in provincial legislatures and municipalities.
She also reportedly took great delight in telling members how the ANC had ejected the EFF from Parliament.
Mbete has come under considerable fire in the past few days after ordering security to forcibly remove EFF members from the National Assembly on Thursday night during President Jacob Zuma’s State of the Nation Address.
The DA Chief Whip John Steenhuisen said Mbete is unfit to be a Speaker of the National Assembly.
However, National Council of Provinces chairperson Thandi Modise justified the decision to eject the EFF from Parliament during Thursday’s State of the Nation address, claiming the house is ‘empowered’ to call security, reported News24 last week.
Protest and violence overshadowed President Jacob Zuma’s state-of-the-nation address on Thursday night as the Economic Freedom Fighters carried out their threat to confront him on misspending on his Nkandla home.
As riot police dragged EFF MPs out of the chamber and down the corridor after the party interrupted President Jacob Zuma’s speech, the Democratic Alliance walked out and accused the ANC of becoming as oppressive as the apartheid regime.
National Council of Provinces chairperson Thandi Modise, however, justified the presiding officers’ decision to eject the EFF by force.
“We are also empowered… to ask for security – whichever security – to act… I think we should allow this house to do its business,” Modise said.
EFF party leader Julius Malema was defiant following his party’s ejection from Parliament, speaking on the steps of the house.
“Whether they beat us or not, we’ll continue to ask relevant questions,” Malema told reporters in drizzling rain, the T-shirt under his red overall torn at the neck.
“We have seen that we are part of a police state where when people are unable to give political answers, political solutions to political problems, they resort to security apparatus and we’ve always said the ANC has sent South African into a security state, so today it was confirmed.