South African News

Breaking: ANC, DA agree to form Government if National Unity

South Africa’s largest political party, the African National Congress (ANC), reportedly reached a deal to form a unity government with former political foes.

South African media reported on Friday that a deal had been struck involving the opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) and the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP).

Talks on forming a coalition government had gone down to the wire with the ANC having to form a governing alliance after losing its parliamentary majority in elections held over two weeks ago.

Also Read: ANC proposes Government of National Unity With Other Parties Except MK

The ANC won 159 out of 400 seats in the National Assembly. The opposition DA was next with 87 seats, while the populist uMkhonto we Sizwe (MK) party led by former President Jacob Zuma has 58.

The move comes as South Africa’s newly elected parliament holds its first sitting on Friday during which President Cyril Ramaphosa is expected to be re-elected, according to reports by the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) and TimesLive

According to ANC Secretary-General Fikile Mbalula, talks about a Government of National Unity were held with opposition parties.

The DA, the Zulu nationalist Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) and several smaller parties all backed a Government of National Unity (GNU).

Mbalula said the radical leftist Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) had refused to join what he still called a unity government.

“We have engaged in exploratory discussions with the EFF, and we did not find each other on the issue of the GNU,” Mbalula told reporters. “We have engaged with the DA, we agreed on the GNU with them.”

Mbalula said the ANC would continue to engage with the MK party, who disputed the May 29 election results.

Zuma’s party has warned it would boycott Friday’s proceedings.

The leaders of the MK and EFF were former members of the ANC, with Julius Malema being at one point the ANC Youth League president before he was thrown out of the party, and Zuma having been ANC leader for 10 years. –DW

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