Parliament to hold no-confidence vote on speaker

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Parliament to hold no-confidence vote on speaker

South Africa’s National Assembly is set to hold a motion of no confidence against Speaker Nosiviwe
Mapisa-Nqakula amid allegations of corruption against her. This marks the second time Mapisa-
Nqakula has faced such a motion since being elected Speaker in 2021.

Deputy Speaker Lechesa Tsenoli has accepted a request from Democratic Alliance (DA) chief whip
Siviwe Gwarube to table the motion for Mapisa-Nqakula’s removal. Gwarube cited various
allegations of improper conduct in the motion submitted last week under Section 54(2) of the
Constitution.

In a statement, Parliament confirmed that Tsenoli deemed the motion “substantively in order” and
will schedule it as a priority after consulting with the African National Congress (ANC) chief whip, as
per the rules. “A motion for the removal of the speaker must comply, to the satisfaction of the
deputy speaker, with relevant laws, rules, and directives,” the statement read.

The move comes as Mapisa-Nqakula faces accusations of receiving over R2 million in bribes from a
defense contractor during her tenure as Minister of Defence between 2016 and 2019. She is
currently on special leave from her role as Speaker.

On Monday, the Gauteng High Court in Pretoria heard Mapisa-Nqakula’s application to interdict the
state from arresting her. The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) argued that the Speaker, who
may face 12 counts of corruption and bribery, is not immune from arrest, describing her move as “an
abuse of court processes.”

Judge Sulet Potterill reserved judgment on the matter until April 2, after the Investigating
Directorate (ID) conducted a search-and-seizure operation at Mapisa-Nqakula’s home last week.

In March 2022, Mapisa-Nqakula survived a previous no-confidence motion tabled by the Economic
Freedom Fighters (EFF) in the National Assembly.

The upcoming vote will be a significant test for the Speaker, who has denied any wrongdoing. The
date will be announced after consultations between the Deputy Speaker and the ANC chief whip.

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