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Parliament sets date to debate dissolution

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Parliament sets date to debate dissolution

Photo by Reuters

31st August 2017

By: News24Wire

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Parliament will debate the Democratic Alliance's (DA's) motion to dissolve the National Assembly on Tuesday, September 5, its programming committee heard on Thursday.

Recent events showed it was time to hold early elections, as a record number of MPs, including those from the African National Congress (ANC), voted to remove President Jacob Zuma in the failed motion of no confidence on August 8, the Democratic Alliance said in a statement.

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"The reality is that South Africa cannot afford another two years of ANC governance," DA chief whip John Steenhuisen said after the meeting.

"With over half of South Africans living in abject poverty, 9.3-million of our people without work and our economy showing no signs of being able to recover from the recession, we need a new beginning."

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He said the drafters of the Constitution included a provision to allow for early elections for that very purpose.

According to section 50 of the Constitution, the president must dissolve the National Assembly if the majority of its members, 201, adopt a resolution to do so. This can be done three years after the previous election.

Vindicated

The ANC's parliamentary caucus said it felt vindicated after DA leader Mmusi Maimane first called for Parliament to be dissolved and early elections be held earlier this month. It showed the DA did not respect democracy and the electorate of SA, who voted the ANC into power, ANC chief whip Jackson Mthembu said.

The majority of the DA's opposition partners rejected the call. The Economic Freedom Fighters said the motion was disingenuous. The United Democratic Movement said it was impractical, as the Electoral Commission of South Africa was not ready to hold early elections.

The Inkatha Freedom Party said the idea required a lot of consideration and money, and should not be taken lightly. The Freedom Front Plus said the DA's motion was opportunistic and would not succeed.

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