After failing to convince African National Congress MPs to vote to remove President Jacob Zuma previously, the Democratic Alliance is hoping the general public will have better luck.
The party is calling on all South Africans to write to ANC MPs and lobby them to support a motion of no confidence in Zuma, which will be debated in Parliament on Tuesday, March 1.
DA Chief Whip John Steenhuisen said this would be an opportunity for members of the ruling party to do “what is right for South Africa”.
“We can no longer allow one man to lead our country down the path to further joblessness and poverty,” he said.
The party has also called for Cabinet ministers and their deputies to recuse themselves from the vote, a notion which the ANC has labelled “fanciful”.
The DA also called for a secret ballot vote.
Steenhuisen said in a statement on Thursday the party had created an online toolkit to make it easier for South Africans to write to the MPs.
The toolkit included all the email addresses of the ANC MPs, as well as a prewritten message calling for them to vote with their conscience.
“South Africa is no longer the beacon of hope to the world that it was at the dawn of our democracy; our economy is in crisis; and the constitution, the foundation of our democratic state, is increasingly coming under threat from a government that appears to have lost respect for the Rule of Law,” the online letter reads.
It can, however, be edited.
The party has also created an online petition calling for South Africans to support the motion of no confidence.
Earlier this week, the office of the ANC chief whip in Parliament said the DA’s calls for ministers to recuse themselves and the secret ballot was a “desperate attempt to divert attention” from the problems within the party.
“Both his calls are based on neither the Constitution nor the rules of procedure that govern the proceedings of the National Assembly, and it would thus be difficult for anyone to dignify with serious consideration. We find the thinking behind such bizarre propositions illogical,” spokesperson Moloto Mothapo said.
In March 2015, the DA unsuccessfully brought a motion of no confidence against Zuma.
At the time, they also called for ANC MPs to “vote with their conscience”. The motion was unsuccessful when a total of 221 MPs voted against it, 113 supported it, and eight abstained from voting.