No-confidence votes: How politicians faced the music

14 December 2018 - 08:35 By Ntokozo Miya
Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga smiles after surviving two votes of no confidence on August 30 2018.
Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga smiles after surviving two votes of no confidence on August 30 2018.
Image: Thapelo Morebudi

The most unsettling words for a politician are, perhaps, “vote of no confidence”.

They can result in a person being without a job almost as soon as the results are announced.

Here’s a list of politicians who have been affected this year.

Theresa May

UK Prime Minister Theresa May recently won a no-confidence vote with a majority of 83. She remains leader of Britain’s Conservative Party.

In SA, we are no strangers to politicians being told: “We no longer have confidence in you.”

This year, the country saw several prominent leaders go through the unpleasant process. Some survived; others are no more.

Jacob Zuma

After surviving eight motions to remove him from office, former president Jacob Zuma faced the threat of a ninth no-confidence vote in February 2018. 

The motion was brought by the EFF. 

Not long after the motion, Zuma resigned

“I fear no motion of no confidence or impeachment. They are the lawful mechanisms for the people of this beautiful country to remove their president,” he said in his exit statement.

Patricia de Lille

The internal battles between Patricia de Lille and the DA made headlines for months before she became the subject of a no-confidence vote in April 2018.

The DA intensified its efforts to part ways with De Lille after she publicly declared that she would resign from the party.

The odds seemed to be stacked against De Lille, but she survived the no-confidence vote by a single ballot. 

De Lille had no intention of staying where she was not wanted, however.

She resigned from the DA on October 31 2018 and, the following day, launched a new political party.

Athol Trollip

The former Nelson Mandela Bay mayor was a casualty of a no-confidence vote in August 2018.

Adding salt to Trollip’s wounds was the fact that fellow DA politician Mbulelo Manyati was among those who wanted him out. 

Manyati was shown the door by the DA for voting against his own and publicly stating his intention to resign.

Trollip took his grievance to the courts, hoping the results of the vote would be set aside. It wasn’t to be.

The UDM’s Mongameli Bobani is the current NMB mayor. 

Solly Msimanga

Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga overcame a no-confidence vote in August 2018.

It was the second such attempt to oust the DA mayor.

Two motions were filed, by the EFF and ANC, after details of a R12bn consultancy tender emerged.

Katlego Matheba, speaker of the council, rejected the EFF’s motion because it didn’t show consideration for the rules. 

The ANC withdrew its motion shortly thereafter, handing victory to Msimanga.