Just hours before President Cyril Ramaphosa is set to face a vote of no confidence in parliament on Thursday, the saga will play out in the Cape Town high court.
The African Transformation Movement (ATM), which brought the application before parliament, was on Wednesday granted the right to argue in court that a secret ballot should be allowed for the no-confidence vote.
Speaker Thandi Modise had denied a request from the ATM for the voice to be secret.
ATM president Vuyo Zungula, in an affidavit given to the high court on Wednesday, argued that the vote should be secret because of the importance of the matter.
Arguing that Ramaphosa had “failed in his constitutional mandate”, Zungula said that the best way for MPs to hold him to account and to be “faithful to the republic and the constitution” was to vote in secret.
“The MPs’ faithfulness to the republic can best be, in my opinion, achieved when testing their personal conscience rather than when the MP acts on the mandate of his or her political party. The applicant believes that the only way to achieve that is by vote by secret ballot which the applicant has sought from the speaker.