Members of Parliament in Africa are voted by the people in their respective constituencies so as to act as their representative in government. Their role is quite simple, serve their people and approve or repeal legislation. But, there are moments when African members of parliament become 5 year old children and decide to fight instead of having a mature discussion. Some of them are quite funny but embarrassing nevertheless. Let’s look at the top 5 parliament fights in Africa.
- Year: 2014
The Kenyan parliament is not new to having disputes settled in chaos. The most infamous one had to be the anti-terrorism law. Members approved sweeping anti-terrorism laws that rights activists warned would pose a draconian threat to civil liberties and freedom of speech.
The parliamentary speaker, Justin Muturi, was pelted with books, documents and other objects by opposition MPs as emotions ran high over the bill, while on the streets of Nairobi police fired warning shots and eight demonstrators were reportedly arrested. The bill came about after the country suffered the horrific Westgate Mall attack in 2013.
- Year: 2013
Nigerian MPs brawled in parliament in 2013 over a splinter group’s visit. The group was a dissent faction of the ruling party who were opposed to former president Jonathan’s re-election. This led to conflict with some threatening to hurl chairs at other members. What is this? The WWE?
- Year: 2018
Police in Zimbabwe forcibly removed some opposition members of parliament after they refused to stand up for President Emmerson Mnangagwa. Parliamentary speaker Jacob Mudenda asked the opposition members to leave the chamber, accusing them of disrespect. When they refused, he called in the police and scuffles ensued. The opposition accused Zimbabwe’s electoral commission of rigging the July 30 election that saw Mnangagwa winning by a narrow margin.
All they had to do was stand up. That’s it. But they had to be hard headed fellows didn’t they?
2. South Africa
- Year: 2017
This one got bad real quick. A fight Broke out in South African Parliament Between EFF and Security during Zuma address in 2017. Members of the radical Economic Freedom Fighters’ party (EFF), all dressed in red, scuffled with security guards who ejected them from the chamber. Mr Zuma had twice got to his feet but was shouted down by EFF MPs.P
The Economic Freedom Fighters opposition party had repeatedly interrupted the state-of-the-nation speech before the riot errupted. Speaker Baleka Mbete called the parliament security to escort the EFF members out before it got ugly. Just have a look.
- Year: 2017
Words fail me to describe how bad this fight was. It was so bad that people actually found it entertaining. Someone even decided to overlay WWE audio clips to make it look like we are watching the Royal Rumble. So, what went wrong?
25 MPs opposed the proposed constitutional amendment to prolong Museveni’s tenure was . The move saw the presidential age gap moved up to 75 years, making Museveni viable for the next election at the time (2017). The members of parliament exchanged blows and kicks, with some using microphone stands as crude weapons in the melee. A Reuters journalist on the scene said two female lawmakers were carried out of the chamber after collapsing. The bill was still passed making the big fight useless at the end. Hey, at least it spawned a good meme.
What do you think about our members of parliament? Are they representing us well or are they just embarrassing us in front of the whole world? Let us know in the comments below.