Parliament has welcomed the decision of the Western Cape High Court to reject an application by the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) to stop the national legislature from implementing new rules that were adopted recently.
The rules prevent any member of parliament from interrupting President Cyril Ramaphosa when he delivers the State of the Nation Address (Sona).
Parliament said it has been forced to amend the rules because of disruptions by the EFF since 2014.
In December, parliament adopted new rules that will prevent the disruption of the Sona.
The legislature said it welcomed the decision of the Western Cape High Court on Tuesday.
Ramaphosa is expected to deliver his Sona on Thursday. This will be the last Sona before the elections take place this year.
“The Western Cape High Court has dismissed, with costs, the EFF application for an interim interdict to prevent Parliament from implementing chapters 1 to 2B of the Joint Rules of Parliament.
“Adopted on December 6, 2023, Chapter 1 to 2B of the Joint Rules deals with, among others, that no member may interrupt the President when he delivers the State of Nation Address and the removal of Members of Parliament from the Chamber.
“In its judgment delivered today, the court held that the EFF failed to provide any evidence to substantiate their claim that the amended rules were only adopted as a means to ‘target’ them as all other political parties would be subjected to the impugned rules, said parliament.
Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula and National Council of Provinces chairperson Amos Masondo earlier said they will implement the new rules.
Masondo said the rules were not targeting members of the EFF or any party.
This is the second application the EFF has lost in the High Court in the past few days.
They first lost their application to get the suspension of Julius Malema and five other members of the EFF lifted.
This followed the adoption of the report of the Powers and Privileges Committee by Parliament last December that found Malema, his deputy Floyd Shivambu, Mbuyiseni Ndlozi, Sinawo Tambo, Marshall Dlamini and Vuyani Pambo guilty of misconduct.
The six EFF members were hauled over the coals for disrupting Ramaphosa during the Sona last year.
Parliament then amended its rules to prevent any member from interrupting Ramaphosa when he delivers the Sona.
The national legislature said the judgment of the high court will ensure that the new rules were implemented on Thursday.