'We feared Malema assassination' - EFF on parliament assault

EFF leaders were involved in a scuffle in parliament.
EFF leaders were involved in a scuffle in parliament.
Image: Screengrab

The Economic Freedom Fighters party claims that their member acted in ‘self-defence’ when he slapped a parliamentary policing official following the State of the Nation Address (Sona) on Thursday evening.

A man who has been identified as EFF MP Marshall Dlamini was caught on camera slapping Warrant Officer Johan Carstens, during an altercation allegedly involving party leader Julius Malema and his deputy Floyd Shivambu.

In the video, Malema – who is being held back – is seen approaching Carstens and wagging his finger at him. A man in a suit and white shirt then tries to restrain Malema when the scuffle is then joined by Shivambu.

Marshall and is then overpowered.The trio is then seen charging towards Carstens who then takes a few steps back away from them before being slapped by Marshall.

Marshall and Malema are then pushed away by people around Carstens.

Video footage has emerged of EFF MP Marshall Dlamini slapping a man after the Sona address on Thursday, February 8 2018. In a statement from Parliament, national assembly speaker Baleka Mbete and national council of provinces chairperson Thandi Modise said they "denounce in the strongest terms the alleged assault of a police officer stationed at parliament by a member of parliament from the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF)."

According to parliament’s spokesperson Moloto Mathapo, the officer suffered facial injuries and has subsequently opened an assault case with the police.

In a bizarre turn of events, EFF spin-doctor Mbuyiseni Ndlozi has claimed that party members were nervous following a tip off that there would be an attempt on Malema’s life.

The EFF, according to Ndlozi, were informed that parliamentary security service were “infiltrated” by the said right wing groups and they had pinned their hopes on EFF causing chaos in parliament and ultimately being kicked out which would then present an opportunity to carry out the assassination.

“Accordingly, when the CIC [commander-in-chief], Malema, and the EFF leadership were unreasonably stopped by these white shirts in parliament, after the house had been adjourned, we all thought this was the moment and reacted with the necessary self-defence”, Ndlozi said in a media statement.

“The event of a white security man in black and white, being pushed and clapped in the face, followed him violently pulling the CIC Malema from passing through the corridor doors of the National Assembly,” said Ndlozi.

Parliament presiding officers have since condemned the incident labelling it as “shameful”.

“The presiding officers are outraged and disappointed by this shameful conduct by the MP, who, as a public representative, is expected to display exemplary conduct to the rest of society – particularly during an important decorous occasion such as the Sona,” said Mothapo.

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