The Constitutional Court is ruling on whether a parliamentary vote on a motion of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma should be conducted by secret ballot.

The United Democratic Movement (UDM) approached the court last month asking it to order that the vote be conducted by secret ballot.

The UDM relies on Section 102 (2) of the constitution.

This section states that if the National Assembly‚ by a vote supported by a majority of its members‚ passes a motion of no confidence in the president‚ the president and the other members of the Cabinet must resign.

The party had argued in court that members of parliament are entitled to vote according to their personal conscience.

It contended that National Assembly Speaker Baleka Mbete is mistaken in saying that she has no discretion to decide on a secret ballot.

The actual debate on the motion of no confidence was postponed by Mbete to allow for the court application to be finalised.

Opposition parties have been calling for a secret ballot as they believe there are members of the ANC who are tired of Zuma’s troubles with the Guptas and the manner that his administration is handling state-owned entities.

If there is a secret ballot‚ these ANC MPs will get an opportunity to vote against their party and the president without the possibility of facing any disciplinary action.

Former president Kgalema Motlanthe has said in the past voting against Zuma could not be considered by the ANC as misconduct.