In pictures: Mngxitama escorted from press conference

Chaos erupted at the Southern Sun Hotel in Cape Town between two factions of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), ahead of the State of the Nation address. The EFF’s party commissar for land Andile Mngxitama, who had called for a press briefing at the hotel, was chased by a group of EFF supporters loyal to Julius Malema.

EFF Malema supporters attack Andile Mngxitama at the press conference he called #sona2015

A photo posted by Mail & Guardian (@mailandguardian) on

Mngxitama, who recently spoke out about the cracks within the party, arrived at the briefing only to find a group of Malema loyalists waiting for him. The chaos started when the EFF's provincial chairperson in the Western Cape Bernard Joseph accused Mngxitama of speaking without a mandate from the party. According to media reports, Joseph started speaking while Mngxitama was moving to the podium to begin his briefing. “We are here to stop this press conference. It won't happen. You don't have a mandate to hold a press conference,” said Joseph. The two groups shouted at each other, while others pushed Mngxitama out of the hotel. Before speeding off in a car, Mngximata said the reaction by the EFF was "thuggish behaviour". Malema supporters stood chanting outside the hotel. Meanwhile, EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi tweeted that his party had not organised the press briefing. Watch the attack here:

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