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By Kyle Zeeman

Digital News Editor

Inside coalition talks: ‘History will judge us for not putting aside our egos and grudges’

The ANC first approached the "black parties" and those "within their home" to form a coalition, but their demands were too extreme. Here's a snapshot of national coalition talks so far.

Patriotic Alliance (PA) leader Gayton McKenzie has slammed the “arrogance” and “egos” of political parties negotiating a new coalition government.

The ANC secured just over 40% of the national vote in the 29 May elections. This means for the first time in 30 years it is now shopping for coalition partners to stay in power.

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It has proposed a Government of National Unity (GNU), the first since 1994, and has held meetings with various parties over the last few days.

ALSO READ: ‘SA needs me’- Gayton McKenzie wants to be police minister

Speaking to eNCA on Wednesday evening, McKenzie claimed the ANC had first approached the “black parties” and those “within their home”, but their demands were too extreme.

He predicted history would judge the politicians, harshly, in this moment.

“I think it is a failure for all of us, and I would include myself. History will be really unkind. It will judge us for not putting aside our egos and grudges to form a government”.

GNU is ANC’s safe place

He claimed a GNU would provide a “cushion” for ANC against suddenly being booted from a coalition.

ALSO READ: GNU: Parties need to ‘tone down’ issues or SA loses – analyst

Still his party will vote with the GNU formation in Friday’s first sitting of parliament, unless their demands to have police ministry are not met.

EFF ‘can’t share power with the enemy’

The EFF rejects the GNU, with leader Julius Malema saying his party would not work with political rivals.

“We can’t share power with the enemy,” he said.

ALSO READ: ‘We haven’t closed the door to the ANC’ – EFF’s Shivambu

The EFF is currently negotiating with the ANC outside of the GNU, after previously calling for the ANC, EFF and uMkhonto weSizwe (MK) party to join forces.

EFF deputy president Floyd Shivambu said the party will field its own candidate for president and speaker if it cannot form a coalition by Friday.

MK party won’t be in parliament

Former president Jacob Zuma’s MK party has said its members will not form part of the sitting on Friday, questioning the legitimacy of the elections.

It took the matter to the Constitutional Court, in an effort to stop the sitting. But this was dismissed on Wednesday evening.

ALSO READ: ConCourt dismisses MK party’s urgent bid to halt Parliament

The court found the decision was not within its jurisdiction to rule on. It also lambasted the party for not bringing the matter to the court when it first questioned the credibility of the elections.

Despite the ANC and Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) claims that it was difficult to meet with the MK party for negotiations, the party said it was open to talking with anyone who wanted to engage with it.

IFP backs GNU

Also on Wednesday evening, the IFP announced it would join the GNU at a national level.

Party leader Velenkosini Hlabisa said the party would work towards forming a coalition government with the ANC, DA and NFP in KwaZulu-Natal.

Hlabisa told 702 he was not too concerned by claims there may be unrest if the MK party is not included in government.

ALSO READ: ‘Zuma will not allow violence or country to deteriorate’ − IFP

“We cannot say it will not explode. Mr Jacob Zuma is a seasoned politician who knows the difficult times of violence in our country and who played a major role in ending violence. I don’t think he would allow our country to deteriorate to where we are coming from,” Hlabisa said.

DA going ahead with coalitions

Meanwhile the DA’s federal council has “unanimously endorsed a resolution affirming the mandate of federal leader John Steenhuisen and the party’s negotiating team to continue with the process towards the formation of governments at national and provincial levels with hung legislatures, in order to safeguard the Constitution, ensure stability, and generate economic growth”.

This means the party will go ahead with GNU coalition talks ahead of Friday’s sitting.

Additional reporting by Faizel Patel, Nicholas Zaal, and Vhahangwele Nemakonde

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