Was it right or was it wrong?

Various people, including the Speaker of the National Assembly recently acted in a variety of ways, to curb the protest of the Economic Freedom Fighters in the recent debate on the monies that were spent on the private residence of the President in the amount of R 246 million.

The Speaker of the National Assembly decided to conduct herself in a manner that has raised a lot of questions in respect of her impartiality and being unbiased. As Speaker of the National Assembly she is not supposed to conduct her work based on political affiliation, yet it was abundantly clear that her actions that she followed were politically affiliated for the benefit of the ruling party. Her ‘cap’ that she was wearing at that time was one of being a member of the ANC instead of acting in her position as Speaker to the National Assembly.

The chronological time of the events on the day, has gone viral on the electronic media, and what has been obvious is that she acted outside of her mandate as Speaker to Parliament.

From media reports it became evident that even the Minister of SAPS sanctioned the riot police to the National Assembly, and that is in direct contrast and violation to his powers within the National Assembly as the modus operandi and everything that happens in the National Assembly falls within the jurisdiction of the Speaker to act appropriately.

The events on the day didn’t result in chaos, nor did it infringe on anyone’s safety, yet all of the actions that were taken, were done to protect the ruling party.

This is indeed a dangerous situation in our democracy. Opposition parties that have been mandated to challenge the ruling party on its decisions and ways in which it is governing the country, are being undermined or alternatively prevented to asking questions and demanding answers relevant to the matter, in that they are not allowed to function within the ambit of parliament in a manner in which the context and issue of the matter should be addressed and not ‘coated with fancy words’ which has become so synonymous with the modus operandi of the ruling party in every possible matter.

The opposition parties in the relevant Metro’s, District Municipalities, Local Council, must gear themselves to face the ‘might of the ruling party’ as the example has been set in the National Assembly of how the ruling party, forces itself on those present, and this is not only indicative of bad governance but in no way represents the manner in which a democracy should function in any way.

It is indeed a sad day in our democracy to witness such a blatant manner in which a debate is being handled in the National Assembly, and this although not unique to the National Assembly, as it happens all over the world, but we should not rule with our heart – we should rule and govern with a sound and open mind, educated and accept when we do wrong, and not forcefully throttle our opinion of the matter down the throats of those that do not agree with what we are doing.

That is a democracy and that is how we should be conducting ourselves – we should try and not be the laughing stock of the world – we should be the example of a democracy that functions within the spectrum of clean, accountable and good governance at all times.