Mandla Mandela: DA is disregarding the ballot box

ANC MP Mandla Mandela reacts after the speaker announced the results of the no confidence vote. (Pool, AP)
ANC MP Mandla Mandela reacts after the speaker announced the results of the no confidence vote. (Pool, AP)

Cape Town - DA leader Mmusi Maimane's call to dissolve Parliament is just an attempt to do what the party failed to do through the ballot box, said MP and traditional leader Mandla Mandela on Sunday.

"The Maimane mantra has become disruption, disrespect and disdain for the function of Parliament and the critical role it plays in our democracy," said the grandson of late former president Nelson Mandela.

"The DA leader's call to dissolve Parliament is immature, smacks of arrogance and rank opportunism and is an insult to the millions of South Africans who have exercised their right to vote since 1994 and for whom Parliament is the highest expression of their franchise and a symbol of our new democracy," he said.

On Tuesday, 198 MPs voted against a motion of no confidence in Zuma, compared with 177 MPs who voted in favour of the motion. Nine MPs abstained.

Maimane followed this up by announcing on Wednesday that the DA would table a motion to dissolve Parliament on Thursday, to be voted on as soon as possible.

The party wants Zuma to invoke Section 50 of the Constitution and call for early elections if the motion succeeds.

"We need a new government, and a new beginning, now. That's why we need fresh elections and a fresh mandate," said Maimane.

The leaders of the United Democratic Movement and the Economic Freedom Fighters have already indicated that they would not support it.

However, Mandela believes that this and repeated motions of no confidence by opposition parties disregard the ballot box.

"Like his numerous frivolous calls for a vote of no confidence in President Zuma, Maimane must come clean and admit that his antics have been nothing more than politically expedient oppositionism," said Mandela.

He added that the ANC had defended the Constitution and sanctity of Parliament and was allowing "repeated abuse of parliamentary privilege'' by Maimane and his allies.

"The DA should focus on the real work of Parliament, and allow the law to take its course against those who are accused of corruption."

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