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Former South African leader Zuma's political party joins an alliance

17/6/2024 6:11
        South Africa's
        uMkhonto we Sizwe (MK) party will join an alliance of smaller
        opposition parties in parliament in a bid to take on the African
        National Congress and Democratic Alliance-led coalition
        government, it said on Sunday.
        
        The ANC and its largest rival, the white-led, pro-business
        Democratic Alliance, agreed on Friday to work together in a
        coalition it called "government of national unity", a step
        change after 30 years of ANC rule.
        
        Former president Jacob Zuma's uMkhonto we Sizwe party came
        in a surprisingly strong third in the May 29 election which saw
        the ANC lose its majority. MK won 14.6% of the vote which
        translated into 58 seats in the 400-seat National Assembly.
        
        However, MK lawmakers boycotted the first sitting of the
        National Assembly on Friday after filing a complaint at the
        country's top court alleging vote-rigging, which the court
        dismissed as without merit.
        
        Reading a statement on behalf of Zuma, spokesperson Nhlamulo
        Ndhlela told reporters that the MK party will join the alliance
        called the "Progressive Caucus", which includes the Marxist
        Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) and the centre-left United
        Democratic Movement.
        
        This alliance commands close to 30% of the seats in the
        National Assembly, Ndhlela said, sitting next to Zuma - who had
        a cough but answered questions after the statement - and the
        leaders of a number of small parties.
        
        "This united effort is necessary because the 2024 election
        has also resulted in the consolidation of right-wing and
        reactionary forces who are opposed to economic freedom, radical
        economic transformation, racial equality and land repossession,"
        he said.
        
        Ndhlela said that MK had decided to take up its seats in the
        National Assembly after receiving legal advice and that it would
        continue to raise its allegations of a rigged election in
        parliament and in courts.
        
        The Independent Electoral Commission has said the election
        was free and fair.
        Zuma also slammed the unity government - which includes two
        smaller parties, the socially conservative Inkatha Freedom Party
        and the right-wing Patriotic Alliance - calling it "meaningless"
        and a "white-led unholy alliance".
        



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