South Africa Parliament To Debate President Jacob Zuma’s Future

The Speaker of South Africa’s Parliament, Baleka Mbete has said the request from the opposition party to hold a “No confidence” vote on President Jacob Zuma would be considered.

The Speaker who is also the National Chairperson of the ruling African National Congress (ANC), cut short her trip to ensure the opposition requests were given the appropriate consideration.


Previous no confidence motion filed against Zuma failed as the ruling ANC has a commanding majority.

There has also been a growing backlash against Zuma from within his party and its allies after a string of missteps which culminated with the firing of the Finance Minister that rocked markets.

Analysts say the sacking of the Finance Minister, Pravin Gordhan last week may trigger damaging credit downgrades from ratings agencies, which would drive up the government’s borrowing costs.

Seven suspects arrested over UK terror attack

Seven people have been arrested including in London and Birmingham over the terror attack at the British parliament, the police said on Thursday, revising down the number of victims to three.

“We have searched six addresses and made seven arrests,” Britain’s top anti-terror officer Mark Rowley, who had earlier said there were four victims in Wednesday’s attack, told reporters in London.

The arrests were made following police “activity in London, Birmingham and elsewhere in the country,” Rowley added.

The new death toll included two members of the public — a woman in her mid-40s, a man in his mid-50s — and the 48 year-old police officer stabbed outside Parliament, named last night as PC Keith Palmer.

The attacker also died after being shot by an armed officer.

“It is still our belief… that this attacker acted alone yesterday and was inspired by international terrorism,” he said.

The police have said they believe they know the identity of the attacker but will not reveal it “at such a sensitive stage in our investigation”.

Rowley also said that 29 people were treated in hospital. The police had said on Wednesday that around 40 people were injured.

“Sadly seven of them are in a critical condition,” Rowley said


Source: PUNCH

Nigerian House of Representatives condemn xenophobic attacks in South Africa.

Nigeria’s House of Representatives on Tuesday passed a resolution condemning the xenophobic attacks against Nigerians in South Africa.

The lawmakers also urged the President Muhammadu Buhari administration to recall the country’s ambassador to South Africa ahead of a major anti-Nigerians rally planned for Friday.

The resolution followed a motion by Rita Orji, a PDP member from Lagos State, who decried how Nigerians are being unjustly targeted in that country.

Another lawmaker, Sergius Ogun, PDP-Edo State, said the poor treatment being meted to Nigerians was particularly troubling giving the role Nigeria played in ending the South African Apartheid regime.

“I want us as a House to condemn it and I also want our government to take a stand on it.

“How can we say that we are the giant of Africa when in other African countries, our citizens are being killed?” he said.

In her contribution, Nnenna Elendu-Ukeje, PDP-Abia State, said Nigeria should take extra-diplomatic measures in dealing with the latest deadly assaults because the “the attacks on Nigerians in SA have persisted” despite all diplomatic solutions explored by the government.

Minority Leader, Leo Ogor, said it was time for all stakeholders to “call a spade a spade.

“This isn’t the first time this is happening. South Africans continue to kill Nigerians for no justifiable reason and this is completely unacceptable,” Mr. Ogor, PDP-Delta State, said. He urged the South African government to take up its responsibility of securing live and properties within its borders.

No fewer than 20 Nigerians were killed in xenophobic attacks in South Africa last year.

The South African government has also condemned the attacks, saying it will introduce teaching of history in schools to help South Africans understand the roles Nigeria and other African countries played during the apartheid struggle.


Source: Premium Times

South Africa opposition seeks court order barring military from parliament.

South Africa’s opposition Democratic Alliance said on Friday it was seeking a court ruling on the deployment of armed soldiers in parliament saying the move, during President Jacob Zuma’s state-of-the-nation speech, was unconstitutional.

The president’s address was delayed by more than an hour and descended into chaos on Thursday as far-left lawmakers brawled with officials after interrupting the speech and the main opposition party walked out.

Mr. Zuma had authorised no fewer than 400 soldiers to join the security team at the parliament building during the speech, an unprecedented move his opponents described as a “militarisation” of parliament.

“Armed military police, with live ammunition, on the precinct of parliament is completely untenable in a constitutional democracy,” Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane told reporters.

Mr. Zuma told state broadcaster SABC the disruption in parliament did not reflect a divided nation.

He said: “I doubt that it’s a reflection of the national character. `

“I think it is a reflection of a few kind of people like some parties in parliament.

“Democracy is not about angry young people, democracy is about debating what we need to do with our country.”

He said of the opposition’s actions in parliament: “It does not bother me.

“The fact that you could make parliament not to talk and undermine the choice of the majority of this country because you have your own feelings, I think it’s a misplaced kind of vision, in fact there is no vision at all.”

Previous speeches in parliament by Mr. Zuma have also led to disruption, but Thursday’s, in which he said the government would push for a greater role for blacks in the economy, was the most violent, with the scuffles spilling over into the precinct of the building.

Mr. Zuma, halfway through his second five-year term, ousted Thabo Mbeki in his African National Congress (ANC) party and became president in 2009.

He has been dogged by persistent corruption allegations that he has denied.

In September, the president took out a home loan to repay state money spent on non-security-related upgrades to his rural home, in compliance with a court order.

The president’s popularity has waned in tandem with an economy that has slowed sharply over the past five years while unemployment has hit a record 27 per cent.


Source: Reuters

Fight breaks out in South African parliament during Zuma’s address

South Africa’s parliament was thrown into disarray on Thursday when opposition MPs tried to scuttle the State of the Nation address by President Jacob Zuma.


The South African president was greeted with hostility by members of the Economic Freedom Fighters’ party (EFF), who chanted “thief” as he made his entrance into the chamber.


Members of Zuma’s party, African National Congress (ANC), attempted to counter the chants of “thief” by shouting “ANC, ANC.”


Zuma twice tried to address the chamber but the EFF MPs continuously interrupted his speech.


Baleka Mbete, speaker of the parliament, tried to bring order to the chamber but Julius Malema, EFF leader, accused him of being partisan.


Malema said, “Your conduct has failed you. You are irrational, impatient, partisan.”


Mbete replied, saying, “We have been patient with you, we have been trying to give you an opportunity to express yourselves but… it is being abused.”


When it appeared that the EFF MPs were hellbent on disrupting proceedings, security guards were invited to take them out.


The lawmakers were forcefully ejected from the chamber but not before a few punches were exchanged.


Members of another opposition party, the Democratic Alliance, also staged a walk out, after which President Zuma was eventually able to address the chamber.


South African opposition parties and even factions of the ANC have of late called on Zuma to resign in the wake of corruption allegations.


The chaotic scenes at the parliament were captured on national television.

The South Korean parliament has voted to impeach their president

South Korean president Park Geun-hye is fighting for her political life after MPs voted to impeach her over a corruption and cronyism scandal that has made her the country’s most unpopular leader since it became a democracy in the late 1980s.


Friday’s vote in favour of impeachment is also being seen as a reflection of public anger over how South Korea, despite decades of economic development and freedoms that contrast dramatically with its neighbour North Korea, remains in the grip of a corrupt political and industrial elite.

By the time the votes were tallied, enough members of Park’s own Saenuri party had voted against her to bring about her impeachment – a measure of the damage inflicted on her reputation since the scandal surfaced less than two months ago.

The National assembly speaker, Chung Sye-kyun, said the bill had passed by a vote of 234 to 56, with nine invalid votes and abstentions. The bill needed the support of 200 of the assembly’s 300 members to pass.

As politicians brought Park’s presidency to the brink of destruction, protesters gathered in front of the national assembly in Seoul calling for her to resign. Inside the chamber, opposition MPs sat on the floor, raised their fists and chanted “Impeach!”

Park is expected to wait for the country’s constitutional court to decide whether Friday’s impeachment vote is valid – a process that could take up to six months. The success of the impeachment bill – on which MPs voted anonymously – means Park will be stripped of her power. Her duties will be temporarily transferred to the prime minister, Hwang Kyo-ahn, while the court reviews whether her impeachment is constitutionally sound.

If six of the court’s nine justices support the impeachment, Park will be removed from office and a new presidential election held within 60 days.

The crisis, sparked in late October by Park’s relationship with Choi Soon-sil, an old friend, is by far the most serious of her presidency, which was supposed to run until early 2018.

Revelations that Park abused her position to help Choi secure tens of millions of dollars in funding for her foundations from major South Korean companies, and even allowed her to influence policy, have provoked a wave of anger across the country, sending the president’s approval rating to a record low of 4%.

Choi faces embezzlement charges. Park, who has been named as a formal suspect, has denied seeking any personal gain.

The revelations have led to massive protests in recent weeks, with organisers claiming that as many as 1.5 million people turned out in the capital, Seoul, last weekend to demand that Park step down.

Nigerian parliament rejects bill to make history compulsory subject in schools.

Nigerian lawmakers on Thursday threw out a bill seeking to make history a core learning subject in the nation’s primary and secondary schools.

The proposed legislation was rejected by the House of Representatives after members raised concerns about the implication of a language in it.

The bill, titled “A Bill for an Act to Make History a Core School Subject in Nigeria’s Primary and Secondary Schools and for other Related Matters,” was proposed by Ayodeji Oladimeji from Oyo State.

Mr. Oladimeji said he crafted the bill to address widespread ignorance of Nigerian history – and even major historical events around the world – among Nigerians in primary and secondary schools.

“I have a secretary who did not even know anything about former Head of State, Murtala Muhammed,” Mr. Oladimeji, an APC member, said. “Colleagues, we need to do something about this situation because history is highly essential for nation building.”

But Mr. Oladimeji’s proposal quickly met an opposition, first in the person of Zakari Mohammed and later from other lawmakers.

Mr. Mohammed, an APC lawmaker from Kwara, said the word ‘core’ in the heading of the bill was problematic and blocked it from passing a second reading.

“I know it’s important for a people to know their history, but the word ‘core’ in the title of the bill is somehow,” Mr. Zakari said.

His position was later echoed by a few other lawmakers who demanded the bill be stepped down —even when they spoke highly of its importance.

The opposing lawmakers further stated that the parliament does not need to pass a bill strictly for the purpose of mandating history.

They said other key subjects such as English and mathematics are being taught in schools without special legislative backing.

But Mr. Oladimeji said he proposed the bill because he understood that history used to be in Nigeria’s early education curriculum but had since been removed.

The Nigerian government reportedly removed history from key subjects in schools in 2009.

Mr. Oladimeji said enacting the adoption of history into law should make it stringent for education administrators to expunge from the curriculum.

Speaker Yakubu Dogara, nonetheless, overruled Mr. Oladimeji’s prayers and urged him to go and rework the bill.

The defeated proposal came on the heels of relentless calls by academics for history to be restored into the curriculum for pupils.

In August, Nobel laureate, Wole Soyinka, decried the removal of history which he believed would result in a lack of adequate education for teenagers.

“I learnt not so long ago that history has been taken off the curriculum in this country. Can you imagine that? History?” Mr. Soyinka, a professor, said. “What is wrong with history? Or maybe I should ask, what is wrong with some people’s head?”

Parliament condemns food wastage by Nigerian elites

Nigerian lawmakers on Wednesday called on President Muhammadu Buhari to wade in on the waste of edible food items in the country.

The lawmakers said the rate at which some Nigerians destroy foods had become alarming in recent years, adding that it is deplorable to keep wasting food in harsh economic times.

The concern was raised by a lawmaker from Lagos, Rotimi Agunsoye, during today’s plenary at the House of Representatives.

Mr. Agunsoye said the House is very worried that affluent Nigerians are stocking foods at home while the poor continue to die of starvation.

“Food wastage thrives with lavish lifestyle of citizens who are well-to-do in the society,” Mr. Agunsoye said. “They buy what they would not eat, set a table they will not finish and throw more food away than they would ever need.”

The lawmaker said Nigerians waste about 1.3 billion tonnes of food annually, which contributes significantly to the global average of 30 per cent waste per year.

Mr. Agunsoye urged lawmakers to prevail on the Buhari administration to embark on a sensitisation campaign to make Nigerians eschew their food-wasting habits.

To further drive the message, the lawmakers urged the president to incorporate campaign against food waste in his ‘Change Begins with Me’ national orientation policies.

Speaker Yakubu Dogara ruled that the House accepted the motion.

ECOWAS Parliament Advises Against Panic Measures To Address Recession

The ECOWAS Parliament has advised Nigeria to avoid using “panic measures” to address the country’s current economic situation.
The call was made at the presentation of Nigeria’s Report at the ongoing second Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Parliament in Abuja yesterday.

Members of parliament raised concerns over Nigeria’s current economic situation and advised that the country use a more inclusive approach to address the recession.
They commended efforts taken by the federal government to tackle the situation but raised concerns that it was not doing enough. Mr Dominic Azumah, representing Ghana, said Nigeria needed to include its citizens in the process of resolving the country’s economic situation.
“Using panic measures is not necessary; Nigeria needs to be calm, move with and consult the people on the way out of the economic recession.
Mr Alfred Agbeshie, also representing Ghana, raised, concerns about the vandalism of oil pipelines in the country.
“Is the release of money by the government going to solve the Nigerian economic situation?” he asked.
Ms Aïssata Daffe, representing Guinea, noted that despite the measures Nigeria had taken to contain corruption and improve the economy “the naira continues to depreciate”.
In her response, Mrs Lynda Ikpeazu, representing Nigeria, agreed that Nigeria was not doing enough to address the recession, but stressed that efforts were being made to revive the economy.
Ikpeazu reiterated that the federal government was engaging perpetrators of oil pipeline vandalism, which she said, had contributed to the current economic situation.
She also said the government would look into complaints made by some representatives on citizens of member countries facing difficulties in obtaining Right of Residence permits to live and work in the country.
Read More: dailytrust

North Korean President Executes Minister For Bad Sitting Posture In Parliament

North Korea has executed its education minister, Kim Yong-Jin, 63, because of his ‘bad sitting posture’ in parliament, according to reports.

Before his execution in July, a south Korean official said top official  was interrogated and found to be an ‘anti-revolutionary agitator’ .

South Korea ’s unification ministry spokesman Jeong Joon-hee said: “Vice premier for education Kim Yong-Jin was executed.”

He added: “Kim Yong-Jin was denounced for his bad sitting posture when he was sitting below the rostrum.”

Credit: AFP

EU-Canada Deal Should Be Put To Parliament- Merkel

Chancellor Angela Merkel said Thursday that the German parliament should be consulted on the EU’s free trade deal with Canada, setting her on a collision course with European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker.

Canadian and European leaders formally concluded the deal known as CETA in 2014, but implementation has been delayed due to last-minute objections in Europe over provisions for an investment protection system that would help shield companies from government intervention.

This system is key to a similar but far more ambitious agreement currently under negotiation between the EU and US and has drawn fierce criticism, especially in Germany where hundreds of thousands of people rallied in October to oppose both accords.

Credit: Guardian

New Speaker Emerges At ECOWAS Parliament

A new Speaker has been sworn in at the ECOWAS parliament alongside 115 new members of the regional parliament.

This was at the inaugural session of the 4th legislature of the ECOWAS parliament.

Senegalese born Moustapha Cisse-Lo who emerged unopposed, was unanimously elected by the Anglophone and Francophone member states to steer the wheels of the parliament for the next four years.

Taking over the reins of the parliament, Mr Cisse-Lo has the charge to see to the adoption of the supplementary act to enhance the powers of the regional parliament. This is among other tasks on regional security, development and trade.

The outgoing Speaker, Ike Ekweremadu set a major task for his incumbent; the enhancement of the powers of the ECOWAS parliament which he said was long overdue.

This charge was echoed by the Nigerian Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, who said that the regional parliament has a task to recreate the sub-region with trade, infrastructural development and security at the front burner.

The new Speaker gave credence to the decision of the parliamentarians to elect him as he promised his determination to succeed with the tasks ahead.

Credit: ChannelsTv

Petition To Ban Trump From Britain To Be Considered For Debate By Parliament

More than 130,000 people had signed Wednesday a petition to ban US presidential hopeful Donald Trump from Britain following his call to bar Muslims from entering the United States. Having topped 100,000 signatures, the petition now has to be considered for debate by parliament and will require a written government response.

“The UK has banned entry to many individuals for hate speech. The same principles should apply to everyone who wishes to enter the UK,” said the petition. The petition was part of a social media storm after Trump said that radicalisation meant there parts of London where the police feared for their lives.

Tweeting under the ironic hashtag #trumpfacts, web users mocked the blustering tycoon. One tweet had a picture of London’s telecom tower with the comment: “The world’s tallest minaret calls the whole nation to prayer in the UK”. Another carried an image of Queen Elizabeth II wearing a headscarf with the inscription: “Even the British monarch is now forced to wear a hijab”.

The anti-Trump petition was posted late Tuesday by Scottish resident Suzanne Kelly, a long-time critic of the 69-year-old. Six MPs have also signed a House of Commons motion calling on the government “to refuse a visa allowing Donald Trump to visit the UK until Mr Trump withdraws his comments”, saying they were “extremely divisive and will incite discrimination and hatred”.

Finance minister George Osborne told parliament that Trump’s comments “fly in the face of the founding principle of the United States”. He said democratic debate was “the best way to deal with Donald Trump and his views rather than trying to ban presidential candidates”. Another MP, Tulip Siddiq, said Trump’s remarks were “dangerous”.

“I would say to him you are not welcome in our country in the same way that you want to ban people like me going into your country,” she told BBC radio. “I don’t think we need someone poisonous like Donald Trump in our capital city,” the niece of Bangladeshi Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said.

Credit: Vanguard

Tear Gas Released By Opposition In Kosovo Parliament

Nigeria is hardly the only country with an occasionally lively Parliament as these pictures prove. Kosovo’s parliament is debating a bill to grant ethnic Serbs more power. Opposition members don’t approve of the deal so they set off tear gas in the parliament chambers in protest.
Glauk Konjufca, of the main opposition Self-Determination Movement Party, said party members would not allow sessions to be held until the government renounces its deal with Serbia and Montenegro.

In the past three months, the opposition has disrupted parliament with tear gas, pepper spray, whistles and water bottles. The ruling government has accused the opposition of trying to come to power by force.

Mugabe Booed In Parliament Over Economic Crisis

Zimbabwe’s veteran President Robert Mugabe was booed and heckled by opposition lawmakers over the deteriorating economy as he gave his state of the nation address to parliament.

Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) lawmakers questioned his economic policies, jeering as the 91-year-old delivered a policy speech which lasted less than half an hour.

He spoke as the UN confirmed earlier estimates that around 1.5 million Zimbabweans or 16 percent of the country’s population will face hunger later this year and need food aid.

When Mugabe — who has been in power since Zimbabwe’s independence from Britain in 1980 — outlined his government’s plan to improve the economy, one lawmaker yelled at him to admit that “you can’t do much about it”.

Mugabe presented a 10-point plan which included boosting agricultural growth, encouraging private sector investment and fighting graft.

“What about job creation?” one opposition member shouted while another accused Mugabe’s government of “corruption”.

Another parliamentarian shouted “if wishes were horses” while his other opposition legislator screamed “you have utterly failed”.

Read More: AFP

Japanese Parliament to Force Couples To Go On Vacations & Make Babies

Japan has a low population growth, thus its government is about to make taking a vacation compulsory for couples to enable them make babies.

They say they are suffering from acute baby shortage. Only about 1million babies were born in Japan in 2014, the lowest figure on record for the country. Japan’s health ministry also said that about 1,269,000 people died in 2014, indicating a natural population decline of 268,000. So basically, they were more people who died than were born.

The country says its shrinking population is affecting their economy & want to do something about it. The government figured couples are too busy hustling they don’t have sex. So Parliament is now debating compulsory vacation for couples so they can have more sex and make more babies.

Read More:

5 Lawmakers Injured As Parliament Turns to Royal Rumble

At least five Turkish lawmakers have been injured in a brawl that erupted in the parliament ahead of a debate on a controversial security bill.

The fighting took place early on Wednesday during a closed-door session as opposition political parties proposed various motions to delay the beginning of the debate, the state-run Anadolu Agency reported.

Of those injured, two were taken to hospital for treatment and the other three were treated at the parliament’s infirmary. Lawmaker Mahmut Tanal, who was among those hit, described the fighting as unprecedented. According to lawmaker Ertugrul Kurkcu, the fighting legislators threw chairs and used the assembly’s gavel and bell to hit others. The brawl comes amid high tensions between the opposition and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) over the security bill that the government is pushing for an approval.


Burkina Faso Parliament set Ablaze


Protesters angry at plans to allow Burkina Faso’s President Blaise Compaore to extend his 27-year-rule have set fire to parliament.

The BBC’s Laeila Adjovi in the capital, Ouagadougou, say the city hall and ruling party headquarters are also in flames. Earlier, the military reportedly fired at protesters who stormed parliament.

Parliament was due to consider changing the constitution so that Mr Compaore can run for office again next year. He first took power in a coup in 1987, and has won four disputed elections since then.

The opposition has called for a campaign of civil disobedience to demand that he steps down in next year’s elections.

State television has gone off air after protesters stormed the building housing it and ransacked it, Reuters news agency quotes a witness as saying.

Smoke could be seen billowing from parliament. Police had earlier fired tear gas to prevent protesters from moving in on the parliamentary building.

But about 1,500 people managed to breach the security cordon and were ransacking parliament, AFP news agency reports. Protesters were setting fire to documents and stealing computer equipment; cars outside the building are also on fire, it reports.

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