Statement issued by UDM President, Bantu Holomisa
22 June 2017
The United Democratic Movement (UDM) has been vindicated with the Constitutional Court’s ruling that the Speaker of the National Assembly could facilitate a secret ballot in a no-confidence motion in President Zuma. We thank our legal team, as well as political parties and civil society organisations who supported us all the way.
The risk of Members of Parliament (MPs) being victimised if they don’t vote according the Party-line is very real. In fact, the President has unequivocally stated that ruling party MPs who vote for his removal will do so at their own peril.
The Constitutional Court has today recognised the seriousness of this threat and have made it possible for MPs to vote according to their conscience. The ball is now in the Speaker’s court and Ms Baleka Mbete is obliged to uphold her oath of office and prove that she’s not a ruling party toady.
We therefore call on the Speaker, irrespective of her political affiliation, to do the right thing and grant a secret ballot for a vote of no-confidence in President Zuma.
The proof is however in the pudding and the mettle of MPs will be tested in a vote of no-confidence. The UDM hopes that those ruling party MPs, who recognise that their party and president have lost the plot, will help us to take the first step to free the Country from “state capture”.
The DA has today written to the Speaker of the National Assembly,
Baleka Mbete, to request the DA-sponsored Motion of No Confidence
be scheduled at the earliest available opportunity.
SAnews.gov.za – PRETORIA
Parliament has welcomed and affirmed to abide by Thursday’s Constitutional Court decision regarding the application for a secret ballot in a vote of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma.
This as the Court in Johannesburg ruled that the Speaker of the National Assembly Baleka Mbete has the Constitutional power to determine if motions of no confidence should be conducted by way of a secret ballot or not.
“Parliament wishes to reaffirm its commitment to give effect to the decision of the court. The Speaker of the National Assembly had no personal or in-principle opposition to the use of a secret ballot in a vote of no confidence in the President. The Court confirmed this fact,” said Parliament on Thursday afternoon.
Parliament further added that the view held by the Speaker was that she had no powers to grant the secret ballot in motions of no confidence, as informed by the prevailing factors such as that the Constitution provides for the use of secret ballot in respect of the election of a President, but is silent regarding the removal.
Other prevailing factors are that:
- Section 102 of the Constitution, which outlines the procedure for motions of no confidence, makes no provision for voting to be conducted through a secret ballot.
- The rules of the National Assembly do not provide for secret voting.
- In 2015, the Western Cape High Court dismissed an application which sought to force the National Assembly to vote on a motion of no confidence by secret ballot. The court ruled, among others, that there was no implied or express constitutional requirement for voting by secret ballot in motions of no confidence in the President.
“The Constitutional Court in this regard was called to intercede to provide authoritative Constitutional clarification and guidance on the matter. The Speaker’s view was a cautious one. As a creation of the Constitution, she has to ensure that all her decisions are firmly in line with the Constitution, the law and the Rules of the National Assembly,” said Parliament.
Parliament added that now that the Court has clarified that the Speaker has the powers under the Constitution to conduct motions of no confidence by way of a secret ballot, she will, accordingly, ensure the judgment is given effect.
The Court decision stems from opposition party the United Democratic Movement’s (UDM) application asking the court to give Parliament the go ahead to allow Members of Parliament (MPs) to vote in secret in a proposed motion of no confidence against President Zuma.
But CJ Mogoeng stresses that Speaker herself has said she is not opposed to #SecretBallot – orders her to make fresh decision
— Karyn Maughan (@karynmaughan) June 22, 2017
ANC welcomes Concourt’s Refusal to be abused by oppositon parties wanting to co-govern with no popular mandate
22 June 2017
The African National Congress welcomes the Constitutional Court’s refusal to be abused by opposition parties with no popular mandate wanting to co-govern with the democratically elected government of the people. The United Democratic Movement (UDM) and others brought before the court a frivolous and vexatious application which sought to call on the Constitutional Court to disregard the Doctrine of Separation of Powers and direct the National Assembly Speaker how to direct the business of Parliament.
As the final arbiters in any contested manner, the Court has clarified that the Speaker may decide on a secret ballot. The clarification is welcome. The Court however will not decide for the Speaker, the Head of the another arm of State, as to how she exercises her discretion despite the mischievous and adventourous exercise of the UDM to force this point. We are confident that hte Speaker will apply her mind to the decision before her and we will respect the decision taken in this regard.
The African National Congress has full confidence in our Members of Parliament and do not doubt their revolutionary discipline and commitment to the decisions and directives of the organization. Members of the ANC will not be dictated to by the unprincipled, undemocratic oppositionist coalition which when given an opportunity to remove the racist Helen Zille from office as Premier in the Western Cape failed to do so and subjected their own who voted with their conscience to humiliating lie detector tests in Mogale City.
Regardless of whether a secret ballot is granted or not in this matter, this motion of no confidence – like countless others before it – is nothing but an exercise in political posturing and is condemned to failure.
Issued by the African National Congress
EFF welcomes the unanimous judgment handed down today by the Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng on the Secret Ballot. It must be embarrassing again for the Constitutional Court to correct the Speaker of Parliament on an incorrect decision she took relating to whether she has the power to order a secret ballot or not. That it has to take a Constitutional Court to interpret the rules to the speaker is a statement of no confidence in her capacity to be in the position of Speaker of Parliament in the first place.
In as much as the Constitutional Court did not order the Speaker to prescribe the secret ballot, there is no confusion anymore as and when requested by MPs to do so, she has the power to determine that voting in a motion of no confidence shall be by a secret ballot.
As the EFF, we have no other interest but that a motion of no confidence in Zuma be held by a secret ballot. We shall therefore watch with keen interest what Mbete’s decision shall be. From the judgment of the constitutional court, the Chief Justice is very clear that such a decision must be based on rational reasons. We therefore warn Mbete that should her decision be to not grant the secret ballot, her reasons must be very sound and based on the law. Otherwise, we shall take her decision on review.
It is high time that as MPs we exercise the vote of no confidence in secret to best express our consciences. This is because Zuma’s cabinet reshuffle was not only irrational, but it represented a constitutional bridge in that it was decided not by himself and elected representatives, but by his business partners, the Gupta family. His decision was also based on a non-existing intelligence report that minster and deputy minister of finance were betraying the country.
Zuma singlehandedly caused the economic regression of junk status and recession by his irrational decisions which only privilege his corrupt interest; thus he must be removed.
Issued by the Economic Freedom Fighters