No confidence case against Zuma dismissed

ConCourt ruled Parliament has no veto power to decide if a motion of no confidence can be heard.

The ConCourt has found Parliament’s rules on motions of no confidence are unconstitutional. Picture: RSC Inc.

JOHANNESBURG - The Constitutional Court has found Parliament's rules relating to motions of no confidence are unconstitutional and should be changed.

But the court has dismissed the Democratic Alliance (DA)'s case, which arose from a motion of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma.

In November last year, Democratic Alliance (DA) Parliamentary Leader Lindiwe Mazibuko supported by seven opposition parties, tabled the motion in the National Assembly and requested an urgent debate.

But when Members of Parliament (MPs) could not agree on when the debate should be scheduled the issue was taken to court.

A ruling on the matter was handed down earlier today.

Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke says the rules of the National Assembly are inconsistent with the constitution and does not provide for a political party or an MP to have a motion of no confidence in the president scheduled for debate.

Moseneke has given the National Assembly six months to adjust these rules to ensure a motion of no confidence debate can take place within a reasonable time.

The Constitutional Court further ruled that the speaker of Parliament has no veto power to decide whether a motion of no confidence should be heard.

The DA's Parliamentary Leader Lindiwe Mazibuko was ordered by the court to pay for the cost of the speaker's legal representation in both the High Court and the Constitutional Court.