South African President, Ramaphosa, to face motion of no confidence

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa will face his first motion of no confidence in the National Assembly next Thursday.
House Speaker Thandi Modise, on Thursday, approved the motion by the African Transformation Movement (ATM).

“The motion is scheduled in terms of Section 102 of the Constitution, which provides that, if the Assembly, by a vote supported by a majority of its members, passes a motion of no confidence on the president, the president and other members of the Cabinet and any deputy ministers must resign,” noted parliamentary spokesperson Moloto Mothapo.

The ATM lodged its motion with Mr Modise in February, listing 15 reasons Mr Ramaphosa should be removed from office.

The ATM argued that there are concerns over the funding of Mr Ramaphosa’s presidential campaign funding and his disputed disclosure of this in Parliament.

ATM leader, Vuyolwethu Zungula, also said Mr Ramaphosa had presided over economic devastation, unemployment, poverty and inequality.

The motion will be debated and then voted through an open ballot.

Mr Modise declined the ATM’s request to have a secret ballot.

“Section 1(d) of the Constitution sets openness as a fundamental principle for our democracy. The Constitution also instructs the Assembly to conduct its business in an open manner,” said Mothapo.

He said the Constitutional Court had indicated that a secret ballot becomes necessary, where the prevailing atmosphere is toxified or highly charged, but the Speaker found that the ATM “had not offered any evidence of a highly charged atmosphere or intimidation of any members in the motivation for their request.”

The last motion of no confidence was brought against former president Jacob Zuma in August 2017 and it was voted for in a secret ballot.

While several members of the ruling African National Congress broke ranks and voted in favour of the motion, it was not enough to remove Mr Zuma.

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