After Maimane, head of the Democratic Alliance, calls Bashir ‘a man wanted … for genocide against Africans,” and asks Zuma why he had not kept previous promises to enforce the warrant – as all ICC members are bound to do, Zuma tells paparliament Bashir would have been detained if he had visited South Africa as an individual, rather than as a delegate to an AU summit.
Bashir’s coming to South Africa, it was on the invitation of the AU (African Union). He is the guest of the AU.
Zuma receives support from one of his critics, EFF leader Malema, who tells parliament:
We are not going to agree for the arrest of an African leader in South Africa to polarise Africa and make South Africa an enemy of the whole of Africa.
The Democratic Alliance gives the National Assembly notice of a motion to be debated on August 18 for the impeachment against President Zuma. DA leader Maimane:
The events that led to the escape of Bashir represent a clear violation of the president’s oath to ‘obey, observe, uphold and maintain the Constitution and all other law of the Republic’ and serve as nothing less than grounds for his removal from office in terms of section 89[a] of the Constitution. In blatant disregard of their legal obligations, however, Cabinet granted Bashir immunity while attending the summit of the African Union [AU] in June, and subsequently allowed him to escape the country. President Zuma, as the head of the Cabinet, bears ultimate responsibility for this decision.
The ANC says the proposed motion is a publicity stunt by the DA:
Section 89 of the Constitution states amongst others that the president may only be removed from office for a serious violation of the Constitution or the law. No court of law has ever found the president guilty of violation of the law or the Constitution. In the absence of any constitutional or legal basis, Mmusi Maimane’s motion amounts to political posturing and is not worth the paper it is written on. As we have repeatedly stated, all heads of states and delegates that attended the African Union summit in Sandton were granted diplomatic immunity by the government in line with international standards and practices related to events such as the one held recently in our country.