The Guard

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Horse trading ahead of national coalition govt

By Libuseng Nyaka

QWAQWA – Sunday’s formal announcement of general election results has set the stage for political parties to cobble up a coalition government within 14 days.
This is the first time that South Africa will be governed by a coalition since the advent of the democratic dispensation 30 years ago.

Although formal negotiations have yet to start after the ruling ANC failed to garner the 51 percent it needed to retain power, many political parties are already disclosing their preferences and interest should they be approached.
This was also confirmed by ANC General Secretary Fikile Mbalula, who stated there is no formal engagement regarding the matter.
Mbalula, however, emphasized that demanding the removal of their president is a deal breaker.

“If you come to us with the demand that Ramaphosa must step down as the president of ANC, that is not going to happen.
“We are not arrogant, but we will not be pushed around and forced to agree to terms we do not agree with.

“In the previous years, we were made to write an examination as part of coalition talks for municipality governance. The EFF is the party that requires ANC leaders to sit for an examination before coalition talks.”
He, however, admitted that the era of coalition has kicked in and that they will be guided by their ideology to form a government.
Mbalula was also reacting to the demand by Mk party that it can work with ANC but without Cyril Ramaphosa.

Sitting at 40 percent ANC needs 11 percent to form a government; horse trading has begun in earnest and some parties have already raised their hands.
With EFF raising its hand with 9 percent, the ANC will still need another political party to form a government.
EFF leader Julius Malema also disclosed his party’s keenness to be awarded the ministry of finance.

“We have just outlined our cardinal pillars and issues that we will be demanding from the ANC, and we can’t say now as we are prepared to let go or not. Like you said negotiations of this nature need you to compromise on certain things. We want to work with the ANC because it cannot grow again.”
Outlining his party demands, Malema said there are fundamental issues that they won’t back down on such as the issue of land.
“It is not something you can compromise on. But we will go and engage open-mindedly, and we will take it from there. We want to work with the ANC if there is any party that we can work with properly because when cornered it is not arrogant. Also, it is a party that will not grow from here.”

There are 17 political parties that will be represented in the national parliament , ANC leading with 159 seats, followed by DA 87, on the third and fourth newly formed MK party 58 and EFF with 39 seats respectively.
Speaking to the media DA’s Hellen Zille disclosed that the option of forming a government under multi charter pact is out following their failure to garner enough votes.

“So, we’ve got to take all options that are on table, analyse them all and take the least bad.”

Despite being members of the multi-party charter that formed by opposition parties with the aim of unseating ANC and form a coalition government, Inkatha Freedom Party president said he is also open to discussion on a coalition government.

“Tomorrow we will be looking at an option with the ANC as to what role can we play as IFP and which political parties we can work with in a coalition in order to rebuild South Africa.”