Saturday, 19 August, 2017

Cat with nine lives: Jacob Zuma survives secret no-confidence votes

SA President Zuma faces no confidence secret ballot Social media reacts to Zuma no confidence vote
Howard Terry | 10 August, 2017, 00:08

It was the belief of opposition parties that MP's from the governing African National Congress would be more likely to vote against the president should their vote be held in secret.

But several powerful ANC members, such as former Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan - who was controversially sacked by Zuma earlier this year - deserted him and had urged MPs to vote with their conscience. More ANC members voted for Zuma to be removed in this motion of no confidence than on the previous seven occasions when a vote took place. Yesterday's vote marked the ninth no-confidence vote that the South African President has survived.

Both Mr Zuma and the Gupta family deny wrongdoing.

According to the head of State, no one has ever received so many votes in South Africa as the ANC (which won more than 11 million votes in the 2012 election). "It is their own imagination", an exuberant Zuma told a cheering crowd outside parliament in Cape Town after the result was announced.

Following a two-hour debate and lengthy voting process, 198 MPs voted against the Democratic Alliance's bid to remove the 75-year-old Zuma, while 177 voted in favor.

The no-confidence motion needs 201 votes to succeed, or a simple majority of parliament's 400 seats.

Mr Zuma easily survived an impeachment vote in 2016 after South Africa's highest court ruled he had breached the constitution over government funds spent renovating his private home.

Divisions between MPs and the party executive "could lead to instability and even open warfare", he said.

Some party members denounced those who voted against Zuma as sellouts, and chief whip Jackson Mthembu said the party would consider disciplining them.

South Africa's main opposition party is accusing President Jacob Zuma of "derelict leadership" in its draft resolution in parliament asking for his removal from office.

"They believe they could use technicalities in parliament to take over the the majority from the ANC". "We will vote this afternoon to make sure he leaves", he said.

". Today's vote shows that support among ANC MPs for Mr. Zuma is on the wane". Against this background, the Rand seems destined to weaken further, particularly if worries over the central bank's independence grow and/or Moody's decides to follow its rivals by downgrading the country's credit rating to junk.

The ANC parliamentary party celebrated victory over what it described as an attempted "soft coup". He also has been accused of mismanaging the economy.

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