ANC: Peace-loving South Africans should not allow EFF's 'warmongering'

EFF leader Julius Malema. (Delwyn Versamy, M&G)

EFF leader Julius Malema. (Delwyn Versamy, M&G)

The African National Congress (ANC) on Monday lambasted the country’s third most powerful party, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), and its leader Julius Malema for alleged “warmongering” during the latter’s electioneering in Gugulethu, Cape Town on Sunday.

“Malema’s careless and dangerous discourse of violence and war talk must sound alarm bells to all peace-loving South Africans ahead of the upcoming local government elections to never allow such demagogues to take our country back to the era of political violence and bloodshed,” said ANC national spokesperson Zizi Kodwa.

On Sunday at the Gugulethu Sports Complex, Malema lashed out at protesters – such as those in Vuwani in Malema’s home province of Limpopo – who chose schools and government buildings as the targets for their anger. Instead, he said, they should target ANC buildings.

“Julius Malema’s latest outrageous and disturbingly irresponsible public outburst calling for communities involved in protests to burn the offices of the ANC rather than public property once again proves that the EFF leader lacks the necessary maturity, wisdom, and temperament to lead anything,” said Kodwa.

Stating that this was not Malema’s first incitement of violence, Kodwa referred to the EFF leader’s recent threat that he and his party would overthrow the ANC-led government “through the barrel of a gun”. This type of call for anarchy, said Kodwa, began with the formation of the EFF in 2014 and has included disruption inside and out of Parliament as well as the violent occupation of land.

“South Africans must be careful of excitable peacetime revolutionaries who are incapable of proffering any solution to society other than to exploit public platforms to agitate for destruction, violence, and war,” said Kodwa.

Kodwa referred to Vuwani, which in recent weeks has been a hotbed for violent unrest with some 20 schools being burned down and four left damaged, saying Malema’s call for residents to direct their anger at ANC buildings was “reckless and a shameless demonstration of [a] lack [of] patriotism”.

The ANC spokesperson said that the “reckless utterances” by Malema – the former ANC Youth League leader and the man who famously declared he would kill for Jacob Zuma – contravened the Electoral Commission’s Electoral Code of Conduct which was signed by party leaders on Monday, ahead of local government elections.

“The Code of Conduct prohibits language that provokes violence, intimidation of candidates or voters; publishing of false information about other parties; plagiarising a party’s systems; [and] abusing power, privilege, or influence to influence the outcome of the election,” Kodwa explained.

“Malema’s reckless comments fly in the face of this Code and the noble pledge to tolerance and campaigning free from intimidation.” – African News Agency (ANA)


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