As early as a few weeks ago, the very notion of a successful no confidence vote against Jacob Zuma was unfathomable. Now, it is a very real possibility.
Speaker Mbete’s decision to conduct the vote via secret ballot might be the final nail in Zuma’s coffin, following the allegations of corruption, state capture and bizarre cabinet reshuffles that have lead him to this point.
The president needs 199 votes or more to retain power (from a vote share of 400 MPs), but what happens if he falls short of the mark?
Well, apart from enjoying the idea of this JZ having 199 problems, Parliament will act fast to stablise its government…
What happens if Zuma loses the no confidence vote?
- If Zuma fails to secure the votes he needs and loses the vote of no confidence, he AND his cabinet will all be forced to resign.
- After his resignation, the politically neutral Speaker, Baleka Mbete, will assume the presidency for the next 30 days. As the acting president, she will have all the powers and responsibilities of a leader and must take an oath of affirmation to the republic and the constitution.
- Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng must then choose a date within the 30 days for the National Assembly to elect a new president from it’s members.
- Mogoeng or a judge of his choice will preside over the vote – held via secret ballot – and the winner will become president, relinquishing their MP status.
What time does the no confidence vote start?
Parliament will take their seats for the vote from 2 pm onward. It’s difficult to predict when exactly the results will be declared, but it’s wise to monitor the situation from the beginning.
The ANC caucus is meeting at 10:00 on Tuesday, where the party’s line to vote against the motion would be made clear to the caucus.
Gwede Mantashe – the ANC secretary general – will be at the meeting. JZ is likely to stay home today, however; he’s fairly confident that he doesn’t have to Watch The Throne.