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Watch Video: Fight erupts at South Africa’s State of Nation Address

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Punches have been thrown in South Africa’s parliament as opposition MPs tried to disrupt the State of the Nation address by President Jacob Zuma.

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.

Outside parliament, police used stun grenades to disperse opposition and government supporters.

Mr Zuma has been dogged by allegations of corruption and cronyism and widely criticised for his handling of the economy.

Previous addresses by him have been marred by MPs demanding his resignation.

As Mr Zuma entered parliament in Cape Town on Thursday he was met by chants of “thief” by EFF MPs, who included their firebrand leader Julius Malema.

Members of the governing African National Congress (ANC) countered them by chanting “ANC, ANC”.

Amid raised voices and chaotic scenes, Speaker Baleka Mbete tried to deal with repeated interruptions and procedural questions.

Police outside parliament in Cape Town, South Africa, Thursday, Feb. 9, 2017Police dispersed rival groups who fought outside parliament

Mr Malema called Mr Zuma “an incorrigible man rotten to the core”.

He also turned on the speaker, telling her: “Your conduct has failed you. You are irrational, impatient, partisan.”

Ms Mbete told the protesting MPs: “We have been patient with you, we have been trying to give you an opportunity to express yourselves but… it is being abused.”

Security guards were called in and the EFF members were forcibly ejected. Members of another opposition party, the Democratic Alliance, then walked out, saying President Zuma was unqualified to hold office.

A smiling President Zuma said “Finally” as he resumed his address, speaking about the economy and other issues.

President Zuma knew it was coming. He stood up to make his speech in parliament with the look of a man braced for a long, uncomfortable evening.

Sure enough, the heckling and the “points of order” began almost immediately, and continued for more than an hour.

In some respects it was pure political theatre – an emboldened opposition seeking to hijack a high-profile televised event in order to humiliate the president and overshadow an increasingly divided governing party.

But there is genuine anger in South Africa about allegations of corruption and cronyism against Mr Zuma – and in particular about last year’s constitutional court ruling that condemned his role in a renovation scandal at his private homestead, Nkandla.

Before long, cries of “criminal” and “racist” were being hurled across the floor between rival MPs, and pepper spray was released in the public gallery.

EFF leader Julius Malema, in red, is guarded after he was removed from parliament in Cape Town, South Africa, Thursday, Feb 9, 2017 Leader Julius Malema, in red, was among those ejected from the chamber

It was only a matter of time before the security guards were deployed. They charged into the hall – a donut of white shirts quickly surrounding the red-suited MPs of the EFF.

A few fists swung. Bodies were dragged over plump parliamentary furniture. And within seconds the red suits had been ejected from the chamber.

The DA’s MPs quickly stood up and left under their own steam.

Mr Zuma, looking tired but managing the occasional smile, finally began his speech, focusing on familiar plans to address the legacy of racial apartheid and to accelerate the transfer of South Africa’s economy into the hands of the black majority.

But the atmosphere in the chamber felt flat, while outside, opposition leaders were busy speaking in angry, urgent tones to crowds of journalists.

The State of the Nation address had, as planned, been sidelined.

Mr Zuma had angered some MPs ahead of his speech by ordering the deployment of about 440 troops to maintain law and order in parliament on the day.

Opposition parties condemned the decision as a “declaration of war”.

It was the first time that troops had a security rather than a ceremonial role.

Previous State of the Nation speeches have been marred by chaos in parliament.

Since winning seats in 2014, members of the EFF have caused disruption by chanting and jeering at the president over allegations of corruption.

In 2015, EFF members were removed from the chamber by security guards disguised as waiters.

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Meet Ejovwokeoghene S. Okorodafe, Painter and Potter

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Anttention Media had the pleasure of interviewing a talented lady who embodies the true  inspiring spirit of Nigeria. A true creative soul who has wholly given herself to the pursuit of creative excellence.

Ejovwokeoghene S. Okorodafe is a painter and a potter from Ughelli North LGA, Delta State, Nigeria. She was born in December 1989 to Mr. Patrick and Mrs. Queen Okorodafe, the last addition to the nuclear family tree. Her passion for Art began so early in life that it’s almost impossible to tell the exact age when she started her Artistic journey. By age 4, she was already making drawings with simple lines and by the age of 6 years, had decided to become a Fine Artist. Her father would always call her to present her scraggly drawings to his visitors, proudly showing off the budding talent of his youngest child.



She grew up and schooled in Port Harcourt, from primary school up to her tertiary level.  In her secondary school, (First International Academy) She was the only one in a class of about 70 students taking Fine Arts classes in preparation for WAEC examinations but she was not discouraged because of her goal of becoming a professional artist. An uncle of hers, Mr. Emmanuel Oboba who was a Fine Arts teacher in a govt. School, also noticed her determination and offered to give her extra lessons in drawing and painting. This proved to be very instrumental to her success in the WAEC examinations.
In 2005, Ejovwoke gained admission into the University of Port Harcourt, Fine Arts and Design department, where she graduated as a ceramist. However, she still nurtured her love for pencil drawings, quick sketches and painting, eventually making her practice professionally more as a painter than a potter in the years after her graduation from school.

Artists Social Media Links
Instagram:ejovwoke_okorodafe
Facebook: ejovwoke okorodafe

Earning an income after graduation was also a major challenge as is usually the case for most young artists. Ejovwoke worked for a few months at a local ceramics factory at Oboburu, ONELGA; then as a Fine arts teacher for the primary and secondary section at Wisdom Gate International Schools from 2013 to 2015. She enjoyed the job, but hardly had enough time for real studio practice as a professional artist. Balancing work with the lengthy hours required to produce good paintings continuously was really tasking. By 2017, she made a tough decision to quit her part time teaching job and move to Lagos where the Arts are better appreciated, to practice Art as a full time business, applying her creative skills to meet everyday needs and earn an income: interior/exterior mural (wall) designs, classroom decoration, painting faces at children’s parties, production of party mask costumes, kids craft tutorials, hand made birthday cards and portrait painting.

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Ejovwoke has participated in the Art and cultural exhibitions at the Novare Lekki Mall, Sangotedo, Lagos where she displayed some of the paintings in her ongoing series, THE MIND OF SHALOM: a group of paintings that emphasize the importance of developing the right mindset/attitude, inner strength, contentment, good will, peace and tranquillity. She strongly believes that such a mindset will lead to a prosperous life for every individual which will in turn produce a better society and stronger nation. Her paintings suggest that the problems in our country and infact the world at large, will be better tackled if only each person will work on his/her inner self first, so that they can be able to give something positive and helpful to others; since you can never give what you do not possess.

Amongst Ejovwoke’s future projects is a solo exhibition which will specially celebrate and applaud women for their unique but often overlooked role in nation building. The exhibition will remind women of their importance in society and encourage them to forge on with the good work they do balancing their duties as wives, mothers and career women. She will be displaying paintings done in a rare scribble technique which she developed using biro ink and acrylics . Her works will also be featured in the upcoming Society of Nigerian Artists exhibition by October this year.

We are happy to have featured this amazing talent on HANDS our creativity centered programme and hope to invite her to our annual creative exhibition show aimed at promoting African art and exhibition. Her details are available here and her talent ready to serve a populace.

Instagram:ejovwoke_okorodafe

Facebook: ejovwoke okorodafe


Anchor: Tolu ‘Taraj’ Omisakin

Camera Works: Chris Mokwunye ‘Krismok’

Graphics: Michael ‘Surplus’ Egbo

Music: Oluwatosin ‘O’tea’ Aphia

Let’s take your craft to the world! Booking Agent Chibuike Obi (advertjedichobi@gmail.com)

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When you are tipsy but not high,and a force man too.

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Man drunk on duty and proving to the whole world he ain’t , he deserves a medal honour.

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Protected: Links for VeeTee and App Download

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This content is password protected. To view it please enter your password below:

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