The Democratic Alliance says that the Speaker of the National Assembly, Baleka Mbete, has agreed in writing to a request for a debate on a motion of no confidence in President Zuma.
It follows the President’s decision to fire Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene in December last year, which sparked a collapse in the rand.
Mbete confirmed that her office is in the process of consulting with the Leader of Government Business and the Chief Whip of the Majority Party to schedule the motion ‘within a reasonable period of time’.
A letter penned by the speaker said that the motion will be published on the first available Order Paper in 2016.
“This is a welcome move by the speaker, and in light of the President’s comments last night, I once again appeal to the speaker to ensure that the motion is treated with the urgency it deserves and a debate is scheduled as soon as possible. It is now absolutely imperative that Parliament is afforded the opportunity to debate a motion of no confidence in President Zuma,” said DA leader, Mmusi Maimane.
“The initial decision to fire Minister Nene was reckless and irrational, and the reaction – both domestically and internationally – was predictable and justified,” the opposition party leader said.
“President Zuma’s leadership on the economy is non-existent, and he is incapable of leading us out of the crisis of low growth and high unemployment that we face. The reality is without a strong and growing economy, jobs cannot be created for the millions of South Africans who simply cannot find work.
“It is for these reasons that Parliament ought to remove Jacob Zuma as President once and for all.”
On the weekend, Zuma stood by his decision to sack Nene, adding that the markets overreacted and people exaggerated the situation.
Subsequently, the rand tumbled to record highs against the dollar, reaching R17.99, before recovering somewhat. In midday trade on Monday, the rand was at R16.56 against the greenback.