CAPE TOWN South African President Jacob Zuma has pleaded with political parties in Parliament to behave in a way which is respectful to one another.
Replying to points raised during the debate on his State of the Nation Address in Parliament here this week, Zuma referred Thursday to recent disruptive behaviour in the National Assembly where opposition Congress of the People (COPE) party leader Mosiuoa Lekota and MPs from the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) party were ordered to leave the house because of disruptive behaviour.
In appealing to MPs to be respectful at all times, Zuma said: "We know the rules, laws. If the Presiding Officer and all agree, (you) can't speak when not recognized by the Presiding Officer, and you continue disrespecting the Presiding Officer. If you do so, it is an indirect undermining of honourable members."
In a smooth address, a confident President Zuma slowly went through his prepared speech without interruptions. The President kept his focus on the economy, re-affirming the National Development Plan (NDP) and pledging that government would be more efficient in the implementation of the NDP, strengthening State-owned enterprises, fighting corruption and crime and putting energies into job creation.
"The NDP remains foremost blueprint to fight triple challenge of poverty, inequality, unemployment which still persist."
The president said the government had already met with business leaders four times in 2016 and was optimistic that the results will profit the whole country. This as business commended his State of the Nation Address saying that most of their input had been reflected.