17 April 2018

South Africa: Supra Mahumapelo Motion of No Confidence Postponed

Photo: GCIS
North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo.

Speaker of the North West Susan Dantjie has postponed a motion of no confidence debate against the province's premier Supra Mahumapelo.

The postponement was to allow for the unfolding of court processes, which the Economic Freedom Fighters - the party that tabled the motion - had lodged.

On Monday the EFF approached the court on an urgent basis for an interdict to compel the speaker of the North West legislature to hold the no confidence vote by secret ballot.

Dantjie indicated in a memo to members of the legislature, which News24 has seen, that she was postponing the vote for the "finalisation of their intended legal proceedings".

The EFF, which is the official opposition in the province, has five seats in the 33-seat legislature. It would need a least eight African National Congress MPLs to vote with them, along with the Democratic Alliance's four votes and the Freedom Front Plus's one vote, for the motion to succeed.

Pressure

EFF North West chairperson Betty Diale told News24 that the party remained confident that the legal process would go well but raised concerns that those known to support the motion would be targeted.

"It's a 50/50 situation right now. This may give them a chance to get rid of those who were supporting us," she told News24.

Diale said the red berets would also use the opportunity to continue to engage with ANC MPLs to try to sway them to rid the province of Mahumapelo.

Pressure has been mounting on the premier in South Africa's platinum-rich province, as voices calling for his removal have grown louder over the last few months. Many have levelled claims of corruption against him.

The Hawks raided the North West director general's office in March, looking for documents related to a multimillion-rand IT contract with Nepo Data Dynamics, which was tasked with aligning all government IT systems in the province.

The Hawks also raided Mahumapelo's offices on March 8 as part of an investigation into corruption.

The legislature has also laid a number of complaints with the Hawks. This includes complaints over a multimillion-rand Mediosa contract - a Gupta-linked company that said to have received a R30m advance from the North West health department, a day before it started operating its mobile clinic in the province.

Last week, ANC Youth League president Collen Maine accused Mahumapelo of introducing him to the Gupta family.

Some leaders in the North West have called for intervention from the ANC's national executive committee.

The party's deputy secretary general Jessie Duarte said the NEC would visit the province on Wednesday.

Source: News24

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