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Parliament - A ruling by the chairwoman of Parliament's public works portfolio committee blocking discussion on President Jacob Zuma's Nkandla residence provoked an angry outburst from the DA on Wednesday.
Following a briefing by public works director general Mziwonke Dlabantu on his department's 2012/13 annual report, MPs started raising questions about the Public Protector's still ongoing investigation into controversial upgrades at Zuma's KwaZulu-Natal home.
Committee chairwoman Catherine Mabuza put a stop to this.
“I don't know why this issue is brought to this meeting because the investigation is still going on. Let us be in order, and let us not be impatient on the Nkandla issue.
“We will deal with it, (but)... not now. Let's allow the Public Protector to complete her investigation,” Mabuza ordered.
Democratic Alliance MP Anchen Dreyer lodged a strongly-worded objection to the ruling.
“There have been a series of attempts... over the past year, when I raise issues that are uncomfortable to the ANC, you attempt to shut me up. I won't shut up to please the ANC. I won't stop asking difficult or potentially embarrassing questions. I've got a right to ask any question I want to.
“I just want to make very clear an objection to your ruling about it. (This) has happened time and again.”
Dreyer had earlier asked if the security upgrades at Nkandla - one of public works' so-called prestige portfolio projects - had been completed and handed over.
MPs had also asked Dlabantu if he knew when Public Protector Thuli Madonsela would complete her investigation.
Responding to Dreyer's objection, Mabuza said: “I won't entertain issues that are under investigation; that's my ruling.”
She then instructed the department not to respond to questions about Nkandla.
“DG, you are not going to entertain an issue that is under investigation. I will not allow that,” she told Dlabantu.
The DA has taken legal action in an effort to compel the public works department to reveal its own report on the upgrades carried out at Zuma's Nkandla home.