Mbeki calls on ANC MPs to put SA first in Zuma no confidence vote

Former President Thabo Mbeki has implored MPs to act as a voice of the people and not that of their political parties.

FILE: Former President Thabo Mbeki. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - As Parliament prepares to debate a motion of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma, former President Thabo Mbeki has called on African National Congress (ANC) Members of Parliament (MPs) to put the country's citizens first.

The vote has been set down for next week with the United Democratic Movement approaching the Constitutional Court to force a secret ballot.

Mbeki has written an exclusive article for The Star newspaper in which he implores MPs to act as a voice of the people and not that of their political parties.

The former president says the current controversy in the ANC has imposed on the country the opportunity and obligation to better define the constitutional and moral relationship between people and their representatives.

Mbeki says he agrees with a previous Constitutional Court ruling clarifying that MPs serve in Parliament as representatives of the people.

Speaker of Parliament Baleka Mbete has until Tuesday afternoon to file her response to the Constitutional Court on why she believes next week's vote of no confidence vote must not be a secret ballot.

Meanwhile, the ANC’s Khusela Sangoni has told Eyewitness News she can't comment on Mbeki’s article yet as she has not read it.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)