Ricochet News

DA's motion for early elections likely dead in the water

Sep 5, 2017
DA's motion for early elections likely dead in the water

The Democratic Alliance (DA) on Tuesday called on all Members of Parliament to support its motion calling for early elections as per Section 50(1) of the Constitution, which will be debated in the National Assembly in the afternoon.

"This is an opportunity for MPs to do the right thing and put the people of South Africa first," said John Steenhuisen MP - Chief Whip of the Democratic Alliance in Parliament.

"On 8 August, 177 MPs, including dozens from the African National Congress (ANC), sent out a powerful message by voting in favour of the Motion of No Confidence in President Jacob Zuma. We call on these brave individuals and those, who have not yet spoken out to put an end to the ruinous Zuma presidency."

Steenhuisen said that South Africa cannot afford another two years of ANC governance.

"We cannot tolerate another two years of the Gupta family’s toxic influence over President Zuma and the ANC government. We cannot endure another two years of unchecked looting and plundering of our state-owned entities," he said.

"South Africa deserves a fresh start and the Constitution makes provision for early elections in instances, such as these, where there is a legitimacy crisis. Public representatives are elected to represent the hopes and aspirations of ordinary South Africans who, through their votes, chose them to serve.

"When they no longer serve those who elected them, but instead serve the interests of the political elite and their criminal associates, they must be removed."

Steenhuisen said that opposition parties also carry the hopes of the millions of South Africans who are unemployed and poor.

"They too should not disappoint the disaffected the way the ANC has.

"The ANC can no longer be trusted to govern. South Africans have had enough. This is why the motion to usher in new elections must be supported," he appealed.

The DA has 89 seats in Parliament and needs a many MPs from other parties - including the ANC, to support the motion for it to succeed.

In August, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), the United Democratic Movement (UDM), the Freedom Front Plus and Congress of the People (COPE) said that they will not support the DA’s motion to dissolve the National Assembly.

It is also highly unlikely that ANC MPs, even those that voted with the oppositon in the failed motion of no confidence against President Zuma, will support the motion.

The motion needs support of Parliament’s 400 MPs to back it in order to pass - the ANC has 249 seats in Parliament, and with the other oppositon parties stating that they will not support the motion, it looks like its dead in the water.