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Zanu-PF MP plays lead role in blocking Pan-African Parliament elections

by Staff reporter
01 Jun 2021 at 18:12hrs | Views
Zanu-PF MP for Chirumanzu South Barbara Rwodzi was at the centre of protests Monday that disrupted the holding of Pan-African Parliament (PAP) elections in Midrand, South Africa.

The PAP MPs from the SADC region, including Zimbabwe were demanding a rotational system of the presidency.

This resulted in a stand-off as member countries from the north, west, east and central disregarded the request.

Rwodzi took the opportunity from the chaos to lead SADC MPs into denouncing the holding of the election arguing the process was not inclusive.

"No Rotation, No Election - No Election, No Rotation," she chanted disregarding repeated pleas from the Speaker for her to leave the podium and take her seat.

"Hon. Barbara (Rwodzi) please take your seat. You should not be fighting in the chamber," a voice is heard speaking over the PA system.

"Please call the police, we need some discipline here, we did not come here to see a fight, please call the police, put an order, it is urgent," the male voice repeatedly called but to no avail as the chaos escalated.

SADC MPs felt the PAP's electoral system was being abused as only member countries from West Africa had led the institution since its formation in 2004.

SADC is now calling for reform, from the representative electoral system where all legislators vote for the president using a regional rotational system.

Supported by MPs mainly from Namibia and South Africa, Rwodzi resisted efforts to restart the processes until the elections were suspended for this Tuesday afternoon.

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema blamed countries from West Africa for the disturbances.

"The problem here is that West African countries, especially those who speak French are refusing to accept the principle of rotation and when they disagree with you they bully you and do all types of intimidation," he said.

"They have been misbehaving throughout. You will know the Francophonists are still admiring their colonialists, they see themselves as French, we have to do away with that.

"They see us as enemies, we do not see them like that; that is why throughout we have been electing them."

Added Malema: "They seem to be thinking that because of the numbers of their countries they must have dominance over us and must serve in the best interests of what France requires them to.

"Even if they win they must not think that their attitude unites this continent. A rotational principle helps to unite the continent, every region feels it is part of this parliament, it is not just here to accompany other people."

Malema last week caused chaos during a PAP session when he threatened another delegate.

Two Cameroonians and a Nigerian have led the continent's legislature since 2004, Roger Nkodo Dang (Cameroon), Bethel Amadi (Nigeria), and Moussa Idriss (Cameroon).

Source - newzimbabwe

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