The Deputy President of South Africa is the acting President of South Africa when the President is outside the country's borders, unable to fulfill the duties of the office, or when the Presidency is vacant. The Deputy President is also a member of the National Assembly and the Cabinet. The Deputy President is constitutionally required to 'assist the President in the execution of the functions of government,' and may be assigned any government portfolio by presidential proclamation.
The current Deputy President as appointed by President Jacob Zuma on 10 May 2009 is the former President of South Africa, Kgalema Motlanthe.
Inception and expiry of term
The Deputy President's term of office is not fixed by law. The Deputy President's term begins when he or she is appointed by the President from amongst members of the National Assembly and takes a prescribed oath.
The Deputy President's term is ended by one of four constitutional mechanisms: dismissal by the President, a successful 'motion of no confidence in the President' by the National Assembly, a successful 'motion of no confidence excluding the President' by the National Assembly, or a newly-elected President's assumption of office. Presumably, a statement of resignation would also be sufficient to end a Deputy President's term of office. The Deputy is the most powerful member of the National Assembly.
List of Deputy Presidents of South Africa, 1994–present