• Tuesday, Nov 29, 2022
  • Last Update : 09:54 am

S Africa's Ramaphosa faces no-confidence vote after request by small party

  • Published at 11:16 am November 26th, 2020
Cyril Ramaphosa
File photo: South African President Cyril Ramaphosa gestures as he delivers the opening address during the 3rd South Africa Investment Conference at the Sandton Convention Centre, in Sandton on November 18, 2020 Reuters

Ramaphosa's predecessor, Jacob Zuma, survived many no-confidence votes before being ousted by Ramaphosa's allies in the ANC in February 2018

The speaker of South Africa's lower house of parliament has authorized a vote on a motion of no-confidence in President Cyril Ramaphosa, a parliamentary official said on Thursday.

The request for the vote was made by a small political party, the African Transformation Movement (ATM), which has only two seats in the 400-member National Assembly, meaning it has little chance of succeeding.

"There had been a request by the ATM for a motion of no-confidence in the president that came through several months ago. The speaker has approved that request, and our recommendation is that it be dealt with next Thursday," the official told the National Assembly's programming committee.

A spokeswoman for the parliamentary caucus of the governing African National Congress (ANC) party, which Ramaphosa leads, declined to comment.

The ANC has 230 seats in the National Assembly.

Ramaphosa's predecessor as head of state, Jacob Zuma, survived many no-confidence votes before being ousted by Ramaphosa's allies in the ANC in February 2018.

According to the constitution, a motion of no confidence in the president needs to be supported by a simple majority or at least 201 lawmakers in the National Assembly to pass.

The constitution also makes provision for the removal of a sitting president for serious violations of law, misconduct or an inability to perform the functions of the office, but this requires a two-thirds majority in the assembly.

The ATM's leader was not immediately available to say why the request for the no-confidence vote had been made.

The two largest opposition parties, the Democratic Alliance and Economic Freedom Fighters, said they would respond later when asked whether they supported the ATM motion.

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