Maimane calls on MPs to unite in removing Zuma

The motion of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma is being brought by the DA following the release of the 'State of Capture' report.

FILE: DA leader Mmusi Maimane. Picture: Supplied

JOHANNESBURG - Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Mmusi Maimane has called for political parties to unite and pass a vote of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma this afternoon.

The motion is being brought by the DA following the release of the State of Capture report.

Maimane has told Members of Parliament (MPs) that it is time to act.

“It’s not so often that we agree in this House. Today we have a chance to make this agreement work for our country because together we can bring an end to this destructive chapter of our history.”

He’s also told the House that state capture needs to ends.

“We can choose to sit back while our state is captured by the greedy and the corrupt or we can stand up against state capture; we can choose to elevate one man above the law or we can fight for every person to be equal before the law.”

Maimane urged MPs to think of themselves not as members of political parties but as South Africans.

“This one man who holds us back from fulfilling the dreams of our people, I think we all know who that man is because many of you have been speaking out against him. We agree with [Mathole] Motshekga who said the ANC leadership must choose between the president on one hand and the ANC and the people of South Africa on the hand.”

The African National Congress’ (ANC) Nomvula Mokonyane fired back.

“The motion we are debating here today is really a phantom to masquerade of essence and nature of opposition politics in our country and their quest to gain power by other than the ballot box using a black face to protect the interest of white minority.”

She added: “This motion against President Zuma, in whichever way it may be put, seeks to have us ignore the fact that the majority remains without access to land and remain spectators in an economy largely controlled by minority elite that is opposed to transformation, masquerading and led by a black face.”

Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba also lambasted the DA’s no confidence motion as an attempt to defend white supremacy.

Gigaba says the DA's motion is without basis.

“It would seem that everything and anything would have passed for this debate today, that the DA was waiting for any excuse to bring to the House this motion so that we assist them in participating their denigration of the president and the ANC.”

He further elaborated on the ANC’s support for President Zuma.

“This motion is clearly spurious and should not be supported.”

Earlier deputy Speaker Lechesa Tsenoli ruled against EFF and UDM appeals for MPs to be allowed to vote by secret ballot on the motion.

Tsenoli told MPs the rules of the National Assembly do not allow for secret ballots when it comes to motions seeking the removal of President Zuma.

Tsenoli said: “There’s no provision for a vote on a motion of no confidence in terms of 10(2) of the Constitution or for the removal of the president in terms of Section 89 of the Constitution to be conducted by secret ballot.”

The EFF's Floyd Shivambu told the house a secret ballot was vital.

“We need to introduce a secret ballot because it is logical. We voted for a president through a secret ballot and when we have to remove such a president, we should engage though a secret ballot.”

But the ANC's Naledi Pandor intervened.

“We would like to call on you to allow the debate to proceed. The Honourable [Mmusi] Maimane is waiting, we are ready to debate the matter and we are ready to vote when the time comes.”

Tsenodi ruled there would be no secret ballot despite an EFF MP objecting.

“We have made rulings on this matter because… Honourable member don’t do that. Take your seat.”

An EFF MP interjected Tsenodi saying: “Don’t you like respectful people? Why don’t you recognise me? Am I not a member of this House?”

The gallery is full of members from different political parties who have been cheering despite being told to remain quiet.

Click here to watch the debate live.