Responding to the ANC's decision, Hill-Lewis said that the destruction of parliamentary structures was “a national tragedy that should bring us together”.
“We should all be willing to do our part to help parliament overcome this, and continue its vital work. In Cape Town we see this as part of our national duty, to help where we can. The offer of our facilities, without a hiring charge, was done in this spirit. And it is in that spirit that the offer still stands — we are ready and willing to help.
“The response of the ANC caucus in parliament is sad and, I think, misses an important opportunity to bring the country together. That is their choice. Our choice is to do what we can to help,” he said.
Mapisa-Nqakula is yet to announce a decision on Hill-Lewis's offer.
The ANC also changed its tune on the relocation of parliament to Tshwane. Earlier, it categorically stated there was no need for parliament to move to Tshwane.
Later, it said the old debate about parliament moving to Tshwane was a matter that has not yet been resolved in terms of the constitution and that it would be premature and wrong to jump on the bandwagon for cheap publicity.
“At the moment, the issue is not a priority for the ANC parliamentary caucus,” it said.
In terms of the constitution, the seat of parliament is Cape Town, but an act of parliament enacted in accordance with section 76 (1) and 5 may determine that the seat of parliament is elsewhere.
Caucus spokesperson Nomfanelo Kota had not responded to requests for comment on the change of caucus positions at the time of publishing.