An Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) MP denied that the party was fascist as the acrimony between the Democratic Alliance (DA) and EFF in the National Assembly continued on Thursday.
Delivering a members' statement towards the end of Thursday's otherwise boring sitting, DA MP Gwen Ngwenya said: "There is a party among us of blood and brutality that only sees red."
"We've seen this in action in this House. And this week we saw EFF members assaulting MPs and one of our whips was assaulted. But the violence is not just reserved for us."
She then mentioned reports in City Press of two female EFF members, who spoke out about their pain and frustration with the physical abuse they suffered at the hands of their male counterparts and how the party did not support them, as well as the time EFF chief whip Floyd Shivambu was "famously seen manhandling a journalist".
"The EFF may not be a party of the equal opportunity economy, but they certainly are a party of the equal opportunity violence," Ngwenya said.
"MP or journalist, man or woman, we are all fair game. It stems from the attitude that individuals have no rights: no right to speak the truth, no right not to be beaten up if you reveal the truth about the EFF's fascist nature and its fatal attraction to other people's money.
"Nobody is safe. Sixty-three percent of the EFF members who first sat on these benches at the start of the fifth Parliament have been purged.
"The EFF must answer this for South Africans: If they were to be in government, will it purge and beat up citizens as it has done to the opposition and its own members?"
'Misleading the house'
EFF MP Veronica Mente stoop up to raise a point of order as Ngwenya took her seat to applause from her DA colleagues.
"I'm rising on the word fascist, Rule 92," Mente said.
DA deputy chief whip Mike Waters repeatedly asked on which rule she rose as EFF MP Mbuyiseni Ndlozi did to DA chief whip John Steenhuisen during Tuesday's violent sitting.
"Will you just sit down Waters. Sit down! You must open your ears," Mente said while House chairperson Cedric Frolick tried to explain the rule that the member may refer to the exact rule or may state what the point of order is about.
"Chair, the member of the DA who just spoke of speculations and things of what she doesn't know, and lied to the House…"
"That's not a point of order," Frolick said.
"… Misleading the house, she must withdraw the word fascist," Mente continued.
"We are not fascist, she must withdraw that from the racist party," Mente said despite Frolick asking her to take her seat. "You must sit with your racist party and stop calling us fascists."
'Used by white people'
Frolick said the reference to fascism was in relation to a political party and therefore not unparliamentary.
Steenhuisen then rose on a point of order and asked that Mente withdraw the comment that Ngwenya had lied to or misled the House.
Frolick asked Mente if she said Ngwenya lied.
"I said the member must stop – the black member in the white DA, racist DA – must stop lying and mislead[ing] the country," Mente said.
"Will you withdraw the remark," Frolick asked.
"She is being used by white people being a young black…" Mente said as Frolick switched her microphone off.
"Let's not degenerate this now," Frolick said. "You must withdraw the remark."
Mente refused and Frolick asked her to leave the House, which she did as the three other EFF MPs in the House followed her.
"Bye bye," DA MPs heckled her.