Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula
Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula

JUST IN: Mapisa-Nqakula elected new Speaker of Parliament

By Siyabonga Mkhwanazi Time of article published Aug 19, 2021

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Former minister of defence and military veterans Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, is the new Speaker of the National Assembly after the ANC used its majority to elect her for the crucial position on Thursday.

She defeated DA caucus chairperson Annelie Lotriet despite a cloud hanging over her head, with parliament’s joint committee on defence investigating allegations including a R5 million bribe from a defence contractor.

Western Cape High Court Judge President John Hlophe announced that Mapisa-Nqakula got 199 votes against 82 from Lotriet. There were 17 spoiled votes.

In her maiden speech as Speaker Mapisa-Nqakula said she was willing to work with all parties represented in Parliament. She said this was a huge task and did not want Parliament to fail in its work.

She said Parliament was too important an institution to fail in its duty.

Hlophe had earlier presided over the election of the Speaker after acting Chief Justice Raymond Zondo appointed him.

The voting had begun after Parliament announced that the process would take four hours. The process started at 11am and concluded shortly before 3pm.

Counting began after MPs finished casting secret ballots on the two candidates vying for the position of Speaker.

“I am assured by the returning officers that everybody has voted. We now proceed to the next stage, which is this. The assistant returning officers will now close and seal the ballot boxes. I now suspend the proceedings to enable the returning officer to count the votes in my presence and will report the results to me,” said Hlophe.

Earlier Secretary to the National Assembly Masibulele Xaso and acting Secretary to Parliament Baby Tyawa were calling out the names of MPs, who were sitting in two venues in Parliament in line with Covid-19 protocols.

Spokesperson for Parliament Moloto Mothapo said the new speaker will address the House after the election has been concluded.

“After Judge Hlophe announces the outcome of the secret ballot in the sitting, the duly elected Speaker will immediately take over the Presiding chair and address the House,” said Mothapo.

Political Bureau

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