The South African House of Parliament was in celebration mood and free from its usual loud debates, accusations, and counter-accusations, as the 400 members from 14 political parties who won parliamentary seats at the May General Election took their oath to serve in the Sixth Democratic Parliament.
The swearing-in ceremony was presided over by Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng.
All Africa reported that sitting commenced with the ceremonial procession by the Chief Justice, the Acting Secretary to Parliament and Secretary to the National Assembly, where they were led by the Sergeant-at-Arms into the National Assembly Chamber.
This was followed by the designated MPs, who took their oaths or affirmation - which can be done in any of the 11 official languages of the country.
After all members had been sworn in, the Chief Justice presided over the election of the Speaker of the House and the election of the President by calling for nominations for the position from amongst the MPs.
It was indeed a day of laughter and back tapings, even the opposition Members of Parliament could not hold back their laughter when the vocal EFF leader, Julius Malema performed a dance on the floor of the house ahead of his swearing-in in Parliament.
But surprisingly, all of this was not the main attraction of the ceremony as the world focused its attention on what happens to be the swearing-in of the youngest ever member of Parliament in South Africa’s history.
The ANC's Itumeleng Ntsube from Botshabelo in the Free State has been accredited at Parliament at the age of 20.
The 20-year-old was sworn in along with other Members of Parliament after attending orientation in Cape Town on 21 May.
Ntsube is a student and just recently matriculated in 2018, he is studying towards a degree in Education in Bloemfontein.
Before his swearing-in, Itumeleng Ntsube informed the media and concerned South Africans that he would move to a university in Cape Town to continue with his studies while he undertakes his new role as Member of Parliament.
“I’m 20 years old. I serve as the provincial chairperson of the Congress of South African Students in the Free State. On 21 May, we came to Parliament to be acclimatized with all the process; namely of what’s expected of us,” Ntsube said.
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Header Image Credit: Nthakoana Ngatane/EWN