Home Letters The vote of two vs the people and Constitution
It has shown time again that courts have made decisions that goes against all logic and standing precedents in order to achieve a certain outcome.
And in the case of our Court of Appeal, we see this playing out in full force. We cite many of the oldest and largest democracies in the world as a good source for understanding the context of majority votes and how it is applied.
There are three ways that a majority vote works and they are: a simple majority, an absolute majority and a special majority. In cases where the need for an absolute majority is not stated, then we default to a simple majority.
In our Constitution, there is no mention of an absolute majority and as such, a simple majority is to be used.
Therefore, unless the Court of Appeal has the power to rewrite the Constitution, they should follow due process and standing precedents until such time that the Constitution is amended.
In the world’s largest democracies, a simple majority is used for, among other things, the passing of no-confidence motions and it is defined by a majority of one when there is an odd number and a majority of plus one when there is an even number.
Therefore, it would be surprising to many legal minds to find that two of three judges have decided to rule in favour of a scenario relevant to an even number and not in accordance to our present situation of an odd number.
Then the questions are asked, how do we form a Government with a majority of 33 but are not able to pass a motion? And does this mean the 2015 election is a statistical tie and we should go to a runoff? And what is the purpose of 32 seats? Because if we follow what the court ruled, 32 seats is now a phantom number that does not exist.
I smell many things in the air including a fish market.