Latest on the proposed motion of no confidence against President Cyril Ramaphosa

Latest on the proposed motion of no confidence against President Cyril Ramaphosa

Latest on the proposed motion of no confidence against President Cyril Ramaphosa

The proposed motion of no confidence against President Cyril Ramaphosa, his first since he became president, is not just about his leadership but could be a test for a perceived fragile ANC unity.

Although Ramaphosa was likely to survive the motion on Thursday, the need to display unity could be overwhelming for the governing party.

With the local government elections on the horizon, the factions would be forced to swallow their pride and show brave faces amid their divisions.

Coming just weeks after ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule was released on R200 000 bail on corruption charges, just before former president Jacob Zuma walked out of the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture, the ANC unity is in danger.

At the centre of the motion, which is sponsored by the African Transformation Movement (ATM), is the party’s argument that Ramaphosa has failed to provide leadership for the country.

ATM president Vuyo Zungula blamed Ramaphosa for the rampant corruption in the procurement of personal protective equipment, the abuse of the SA National Defence Force (SANDF) aircraft by ANC officials and the sealing of CR17 campaign bank statements, among others.

“It has become untenable not to have the motion debated in parliament,” Zungula said.

After much delay by National Assembly Speaker Thandi Modise, Zungula increased the pressure, including the threat of legal action, to put the matter on the agenda, which she finally did this week.

The Democratic Alliance (DA) will have a cautious interest in the matter, as it was the party that raised the issue about Ramaphosa’s campaign funding by Bosasa to the tune of R500 000.

The question remains if newly elected DA leader John Steenhuisen will continue with the anti-Ramaphosa posture of his predecessor, Mmusi Maimane, who brought the Bosasa issue on to the parliamentary agenda.

Although the ATM is a newcomer and two-member party in the National Assembly, it has made a lot of noise.

This year alone, the party raised important issues, including a demand that the public protector must probe Ramaphosa’s role in authorising the controversial trip by an ANC delegation who used an SANDF aircraft for a party meeting in Zimbabwe earlier this year.

Zungula also put tremendous pressure on Eastern Cape authorities and Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Naledi Pandor to repatriate the remains of South African medical student Sibusiso Qongqo who died in Cuba after the government was reluctant to pay for the costs of transportation back home.

In addition, he asked parliament to initiate a debate on the human rights violation that occurred during the recent protests in Zimbabwe under the Zanu-PF.

The ATM also took a clear stand on illegal immigrants, saying South Africans must be prioritised on jobs and Covid-19 benefits over immigrants.

However, the ANC’s test lies on whether Zuma supporters in parliament will back the motion and could reflect a repeat of the similar motion against Zuma sponsored by the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF).

The ANC was divided until the party caucus begged members not to support the EFF.

Zuma survived at least four no-confidence motions and narrowly escaped the last one in 2018 after ANC MPs closed ranks at the very last moment.

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