Mbete urged to set no con­fi­dence de­bate date

The New Age (KwaZulu-Natal) - - Politics - DEN­NIS CRUYWAGEN den­nisc@the­newage.co.za

THE DA has urged na­tional Assem­bly speaker Baleka Mbete to sched­ule a no con­fi­dence de­bate in President Ja­cob Zuma for Au­gust 1.

The call was made in a state­ment re­leased yes­ter­day by DA chief whip John Steen­huisen.

He said he had asked for an ur­gent meet­ing with the speaker to dis­cuss the mat­ter. Steen­huisen said he had writ­ten to Mbete a week ago call­ing for the DA-spon­sored mo­tion of no con­fi­dence in President Zuma to be sched­uled at the ear­li­est avail­able op­por­tu­nity.

“This fol­lowed the June 22 Con­sti­tu­tional Court ruling on the mat­ter of the se­cret bal­lot. South Africans have, how­ever, been treated to a deaf­en­ing si­lence by Mbete save for a state­ment by Par­lia­ment not­ing that the speaker ‘will en­sure the judg­ment is given ef­fect’.”

Steen­huisen said Par­lia­ment’s third term was sched­uled to start on July 31 and the mo­tion of no con­fi­dence could and should take place the next day on Au­gust 1.

“It ap­pears that Mbete is pri­ori­tis­ing the ANC pol­icy con­fer­ence and her role as ANC chair­per­son, in­stead of her Con­sti­tu­tional role as speaker of the na­tional Assem­bly, for which she is paid R2.716 798 a year.

“NA Rule 129 is clear that the speaker alone has the re­spon­si­bil­ity to sched­ule the mo­tion and in do­ing so she must ac­cord it ur­gent pri­or­ity. She can­not drag her feet on this any longer.”

Steen­huisen urged Mbete to pri­ori­tise her role as speaker and act in the in­ter­est of the coun­try by sched­ul­ing a mo­tion of no con­fi­dence with­out de­lay.

PRESSURE: Speaker Baleka Mbete, left, is un­der pressure from DA chief whip John Steen­huisen, right, to sched­ule the no con­fi­dence de­bate.

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