Every now and then, between interpellations, white papers, green papers, motions, members’ questions and parliamentary speeches, emotions boil over and honourable members are drawn into physical battle. Citizens from around the world have watched in dismay as their public representatives get drawn into fisticuffs, some more serious than others. Although the drama at our State of the Nation address involved security services and not altercations between opposing members of parliament, the scenes were as worrisome as witnessed by voters in many other countries. The Journalist brings you some pictures from around the world that show the world’s political elites in scenes they themselves would certainly want to forget.
Cape Town, South Africa
Security services in the process of evicting parliamentarians from the opposition Economic Freedom Fighters during the State of the Nation address earlier this month.
Claudio Barbato (L), a member of the opposition FLI party, fights with Fabio Ranieri (R) from the Northern League in Parliament in Rome October 26, 2011. A debate over tough economic reform preceded the conflict.
Seoul, South Korea
Lawmakers of opposition parties help their fellow lawmaker (top) who tries to escape as they scuffle with lawmakers of the ruling Grand National Party (GNP) at the National Assembly plenary session hall in Seoul December 8, 2010. The opposition MPs were trying to prevent certain bills from being passed.
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) MP Idris Sami Tandogdu (R) and an unidentified CHP MP (rear R) hit Turkey’s ruling Ak Party MP Alim Tunc (2nd L) as others try to stop the fight during a debate in the Turkish parliament in Ankara May 28, 2007.
Pictures show opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislator Kuo Wen-chen falling off the podium while scuffling with ruling Nationalist Party (KMT) legislators at the Legislative Yuan in Taipei July 8, 2010. Taiwan legislators threw objects, splashed water and kicked one another, sending two to the hospital in the brawl.
La Paz, Bolivia
Bolivian opposition congressman Fernando Rodriguez battles with an unidentified indigenous deputy of President Evo Morales’ party during a congress session in La Paz, April 9, 2009.
Ukrainian deputies scuffle during a session in the national Parliament in Kiev March 19, 2013. The Parliament was scheduled to debate the date of a mayoral election in Kiev.