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Zuma's 'derelict leadership' main reason for no confidence vote

Aug 08 2017 09:53
Liesl Peyper
Cape Town – The precarious state of South Africa’s economy under the reign of President Jacob Zuma is the principal reason why opposition parties have pushed for a motion of no confidence in the country's leader, which will be debated and voted on at 14:00 this afternoon.

According to the Order Paper of the National Assembly the motion, brought by Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane, resolves that the “House” (National Assembly) has no confidence in Zuma as president of South Africa on the grounds that his leadership is irrational, irresponsible and reckless.

“His decision to recall former minister of finance Pravin Gordhan and former deputy minister of finance Mcebisi Jonas from an international roadshow which was aimed at increasing investor confidence had the exact opposite effect, which led to the plummeting of the rand,” the motion reads.

In addition, Maimane claims that Zuma’s “continued reckless and irrational behaviour” surrounding the position of minister of finance had resulted in an economic crisis, which was previously seen when former minister Nhlanhla Nene was summarily fired from the position in December 2015.

“These actions resulted in job losses and would thus be most profoundly felt by the poor and most vulnerable citizens in South Africa and his derelict leadership has resulted in a collapse of public confidence in the president … and ultimately undermined efforts to restore confidence in the South African economy.”

Speaker Baleka Mbete is, in accordance with the rules, entitled to permit a discussion of the question of procedure and may limit participation in the debate of the motion as she deems fit.

Procedure for no confidence vote

  • After political parties have debated the motion this afternoon, proceedings will be suspended to allow for the preparation of a secret ballot vote.
  • The bells will ring to alert members of the National Assembly that proceedings will resume and the doors to the House will be locked for the voting process.
  • The speaker will announce procedure to be followed for the casting of votes.
  • The question that will be voted upon will be printed on the ballot paper, with the following options: YES, NO or ABSTAIN.
  • There will be two ballot boxes and four voting booths.
  • Members will be called in alphabetical order to collect ballot papers from the voting table.
  • Each ballot paper issued will be stamped before being given to a member.
  • Names of members issued with ballot papers will be crossed out on the control sheet.
  • Members will proceed to one of the four booths, and vote by making a clear mark or cross alongside the YES, NO or ABSTAIN option. 
  • Each member present must vote and may only vote once.
  • Once all members present have voted, the speaker will direct that the ballot boxes be closed and sealed.
  • The opening slit on the lid of the ballot box (for insertion of ballot papers) will also be sealed after the ballots are cast.  
  • The speaker will request each party to designate one whip or representative to witness the counting process.
  • Proceedings will be suspended for the counting of the votes.
  • A counting room will be set aside and monitored by the serjeant-at-arms (parliamentary official responsible for order) and the Parliamentary Protection Services. 
  • The counting of the ballot papers will take place under the supervision of the speaker and in the presence of the whips or party representatives.
  • All ballot boxes will be opened in the presence of the speaker, whips or party representatives.
  • Votes will be sorted, counted and audited in the presence of the speaker, whips or party representatives.
  • The secretary to the National Assembly will sign off the result before handing it over to the speaker.
  • No one is allowed to disclose the results, in any way whatsoever, before the speaker announces the results in the assembly.
  • No one is allowed to use any electronic devices in the counting room.
  • A ballot paper is invalid if it is not stamped, unmarked or if a member has signed his or her name, or made more than one mark in recording his or her vote.
  • Once business resumes, the speaker will announce the results in the chamber.

Afterwards

The ballot papers will be stored in archive boxes, which will be sealed with cable ties and wax, and stored in a safe.

The archive boxes may only be opened by order of the speaker or a court of law. 

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