Parliament has confirmed that it will consider the postponement of the State of the Nation address to accommodate for a new motion of confidence against President Jacob Zuma.
In a statement released on Wednesday (31 January), parliament said that speaker of the National Assembly, Baleka Mbete, had received correspondence from the parliamentary leaders of the Democratic Alliance (DA) and the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF).
“The one letter requests that the State of the Nation Address (SONA) scheduled for 8 February 2018 be postponed and the other that a motion of no confidence in the President be scheduled before the State of the Nation Address,” it said.
“As SONA is a joint sitting of both Houses of Parliament, and the request directly affects them, both the Speaker of the National Assembly and the Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces will consider the correspondence and reply accordingly.
“A joint sitting of Parliament on the State of the Nation Address is called by the President of the Republic in terms of the Constitution, through the presiding officers, and is scheduled by the multiparty joint programme committee.
“The presiding officers will therefore take into consideration all these factors,” it said.
The rand made strong gains against the dollar in mid-day trade on Wednesday amid the news that the ANC’s top officials will meet president Jacob Zuma to discuss “options” to avoid him being impeached or voted out by Parliament.
“There is no decision or instruction to recall him, but there is a debate on what is in the air, the question of what is the best option, better than (the) possibility of impeachment and a vote of no confidence, or we do something different,” ANC chairperson Gwede Mantashe told News24 after a meeting of the party’s national working committee (NWC) on Monday.
Mantashe said Zuma’s fate would be decided after the meeting.