Helen Zille takes a swipe at EFF’s Ndlozi for ‘celebrating tragedy’ at parliament

03 January 2022 - 11:30
DA federal chairperson Helen Zille has taken a swipe at the EFF for calls for parliament to move to Gauteng.
DA federal chairperson Helen Zille has taken a swipe at the EFF for calls for parliament to move to Gauteng.
Image: Freddy Mavunda

DA federal chairperson Helen Zille has taken a swipe at EFF MP Mbuyiseni Ndlozi for his calls to move parliament to Gauteng, after parts of the buildings in Cape Town were damaged by a fire on Sunday.

Zille accused Ndlozi of “celebrating this tragedy” rather than offering solutions that would ensure parliament could continue its work without disruption.  

She was responding to Cape Town mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis, who offered alternative venues for the state of the nation address scheduled for February 10 and the budget speech.

Cape Town will make our council chamber available to the Speaker for sittings of the National Assembly, as well as the use of the Grand Parade and City Hall for the state of the nation address. We want to see parliament continue its important work, and we will do what we can to help,” he said on Sunday.

Zille sang Hill-Lewis’ praises, saying he demonstrated leadership while the EFF called for parliament to be moved to Gauteng.

“Thank you, Mr Mayor. While the EFF’s Mbuyiseni Ndlozi celebrated this tragedy and urged parliament be moved to Tshwane instead, you were trying to ensure the business of parliament continues in city facilities. No wonder the president says there is one city that works in SA,” she said.

Ndlozi had earlier said the fire offered an opportunity to rebuild parliament in Tshwane.

Whatever the cause. Whatever the intentions: it is a beautiful fire. A fire that allows us to start from scratch. A clean slate. Don’t renovate. Turn it into a museum as we accept a gift of so beautiful a fire. A clean slate to start afresh: in Tshwane.” 

He later responded to Zille, saying the fire was not a tragedy, but normalised poverty and landlessness was.

“Tragedy is not an apartheid symbol burning down without a single loss of life. Tragedy is the normalised poverty, landlessness and squalor the black majority is subjected to in Cape Town. Humiliated next to world class white wealth and opulence. But a colonial mistress won’t care,” he tweeted.


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