Gauteng speaker closes legislature so MPLs can deal with looting, violence
The ongoing looting of shops in Johannesburg since Sunday has affected the business of government.
The acting speaker of the Gauteng legislature, Nomvuyo Mhlakaza-Manamela, together with the leaders of parties in the legislature, resolved to postpone Tuesday’s house sitting because of ongoing incidents of violence in the province.
Mhlakaza-Manamela said Tuesday’s sitting had been scheduled to, among other things, offer premier David Makhura an opportunity to respond to questions about the impact of National Health Insurance. Makhura was also expected to give a detailed plan on national government taking over the running of four hospitals in the province.
Mhlakaza-Manamela said MPLs were also due to debate a motion on violence in the province.
The looting in Johannesburg started in Malvern on Sunday, spreading to Turffontein, the Johannesburg CBD and Hillbrow on Monday.
There was also looting in Alexandra on Monday night and Tuesday morning.
A number of shops in the Johannesburg CBD remained closed on Tuesday as shopkeepers took precautions.
Mhlakaza-Manamela said the decision to postpone the house sitting was taken in an effort to allow MPLs to intervene and provide stability in areas where there was violence.
She expressed concern that the escalating violence had a negative impact on the running of government in the province. She called on all structures of society to stand up against the violence, looting and the destruction of property, especially that directed at foreign nationals.
Mhlakaza-Manamela also called for an end to lawlessness and criminality which seemed to be driven by xenophobia.