Marikana - North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo delivered the State-of-the-Province Address (SOPA) at the opening of the provincial legislature in Marikana near Rustenburg amid tight security on Friday.
Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) members of provincial legislature (MPL) were ejected from the house after they interjected Mahumapelo while he was delivering the SOPA.
EFF MPL and provincial chairperson Betty Diale asked the Speaker of the NW Legislature Sussana Dantjie, why the opening sitting was held in the Bojanala region and particularly in Marikana, she said it was supposed to be held in the Ngaka Modiri Molema region.
Dantjie replied that the sitting had been held in all four regions of the province, and the sitting in Bojanala was the start of another rotation system, she then invited Mahumapelo to deliver his speech.
Another EFF MPL Thabo Sehloho asked whether Mahumapelo would apologise on behalf of the ruling ANC to the people of Marikana for killing people in Marikana during August 2012.
Mahumapelo in his opening speech said Marikana was chosen to host the SOPA because the province must push and move forward with Reconciliation Healing and Renewal.
"The people of Marikana you are part of us and we part of you. Nothing should be allowed to separate us. I therefore take this opportunity to bring you warm hearted greetings from the President of the Republic Honourable Cyril Ramaphosa. You heard him in Parliament on Tuesday saying we need to heal the wounds of our past and move South Africa forward," he said.
Sehloho interjected asking whether Mahumapelo would apologise to people of Marikana.
The EFF shouted "order" while Mahumapelo was speaking and Dantjie ordered that they should leave the house.
Outside the police block a group of EFF members who wanted to get in, they were refused entry although some of them had access cards, police fired stun grenades to disperse them, photographers who went outside of the venue to take pictures of the commotion at the gate were not allowed in until Mahumapelo had finished his address.
In his address Mahumapelo called for lifestyle audits for all politicians starting with him, he called for former premiers, Members of the Executive Councils (MECs) and former heads of departments to make themselves available to assist with whatever information required to speed up investigation processes in those departments.
"For instance, there are many families across the province with incomplete RDP [low cost] houses, slabs and foundations in their yard and no action has been taken against anyone in dealing with this matter. All of us must agree that this is unacceptable and urgent action is required more than ever before..."
He called for the first premier of North West, Popo Molefe, MECs and all key officials to help the investigators.
"It is important that we clarify that the fight against greed, crime and corruption is not directed at any particular individual/s. We wish to clarify that the mandate to launch an onslaught against greed, crime and corruption is an ANC resolution as confirmed by the 54 th National Conference and subsequent ANC Lekgotla. It is on this basis that the ANC mobilises society in general to join the fight and therefore it is expected that ANC members including its deployees in government should lead this struggle."
The Democratic Alliance (DA) said the Sopa sounded more like a farewell speech, filled with vindictive comments, rather than a reflection and plan for the future.
"It is clear that if he should follow in the footsteps of his friend [former president] Jacob Zuma, he will not go down alone," said provincial leader Joe McGluwa.
"He has suddenly called for audits and investigations from 1994 into the North West government. This is too little, too late. Especially when you consider the more than R10 billion fruitless and wasteful expenditure that was accumulated by the NW Provincial Government up until 2014 and to date is not resolved. It is amusing that the premier now all of a sudden cares about corruption and mismanagement. He mentioned previous premiers and MEC’s that must now be investigated."
McGluwa said they had been asking for full transparency and insight into forensic and financial audit reports.
"Several requests have been made to the premier to at least table the full reports in the provincial legislature. But they only sent out a list of reports, instead of the content. We are not interested in one-sided, two sentence summaries. We want the actual, comprehensive reports."
African News Agency/ANA