South Africa’s parliament has decided to postpone a debate and a motion of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma, officials said. The decision on Wednesday followed a request by the opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) for postponing the motion pending conclusion of the Constitutional Court application by the United Democratic Movement (UDM), Parliament spokesperson Moloto Mothapo said.
The motion was originally scheduled for April 18, as requested by DA leader Mmusi Maimane, Xinhua news agency reported. But the UDM approached the Constitutional Court (ConCourt) on Monday, asking for an order to vote on the motion of no confidence conducted through a secret ballot.
The ConCourt on Tuesday granted the UDM access to argue its application for a secret ballot when a motion of no confidence in Zuma is conducted. While agreeing to the postponement, South African Parliament Speaker Baleka Mbete did not say when the debate would be conducted, according to Mothapo.
The DA submitted the motion in the hope of ousting Zuma, who has been criticised for re-shuffling the cabinet on March 31, with the sacking of Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and nine other ministers. The move has prompted international rating agencies Standard and Poor’s and Fitch to downgrade the country’s credit rating to junk status.
For a vote of no confidence motion to be successful, it requires 201 of the 400 National Assembly MPs to vote in favour. If the motion is successful, then the president, his deputy, cabinet ministers and all their deputies must resign as provided for in section 102 of the Constitution. In 2016, Zuma survived two no confidence motions(THE INDIAN EXPRESS,2017).