The Indianpost

Malema mobilises his foot soldiers

As Malema and his treasurer general, Pule Mabe, turned to God to seek divine intervention ahead of what is expected to be a bruising two-day hearing, hundreds of league members were being mobilised around the country to show support for their leaders.
Bus loads of supporters were being ferried from at least three provinces and are expected to gather outside Luthuli House, the party’s headquarters in Johannesburg, tomorrow.

ANC spokesman Brian Sokutu yesterday called on ANC and league members to refrain from “staging protests outside Luthuli House” because it not only “hinders” the disciplinary process but also “undermines the party’s constitution, values and traditions”.

He said marching outside the party’s headquarters would be unprecedented and that the ANC would decide how to deal with the situation.

As hundreds of youth league representatives held provincial meetings in Johannesburg, Bloemfontein, Polokwane, Kimberley and Emalahleni yesterday morning, Malema told the African Methodist Episcopal Church in Soweto that the league should not be suppressed – seemingly likening himself to former president Nelson Mandela when he was still in the youth wing during apartheid – and took a swipe at ANC leaders for charging him.

“You can’t have a youth league that does not speak . [we are] where we are today because of the youth league.

“President Mandela [during apartheid] went to the elders and said to them, ‘This strategy you are using of sending letters to the queen will never liberate our people. We must fight for our own freedom’.

“The elders at that time accused him of disrespect. They said he was influenced by communists. His disrespect and influence of communists gave us this freedom today. It is because of the energetic youth [that we are free].

“The responsibility of the elders is not to suppress that energy – you must nurture that energy, you must give it direction,” Malema said.

Malema’s sermon from the pulpit came as the ANC’s allies, the SA Communist Party and trade union federation Cosatu, welcomed the ruling party’s decision to take action against Malema and his spokesman, Floyd Shivambu, for bringing the party into disrepute “through his utterances on Botswana and for sowing divisions in the ranks of the [ANC]”.

Facing similar charges are Malema’s deputy, Ronald Lamola, secretary-general Sindiso Magaqa, deputy secretary-general Kenetswe Mosenogi, and treasurer-general Pule Mabe.

Malema, who is being charged for the second time by the party for ill-discipline, will be represented by two senior advocates, Patrick Mtshaulana and Terry Motau, from Duma Nokwe Group Advocates.

On Friday, Malema spoke at the Young Women’s Assembly, in Irene, near Pretoria, and said that the ANC was not a “pig” that devoured its own children.

“Why would we today want to fire people who have stood with us during difficult times as an organisation?

“We would like to agree with the elders that the ANC is a big elephant. But we need to remind the elders as well that the ANC is not a pig, it does not eat its own children,” he said.

In Soweto yesterday, Malema asked church leaders to pray for politicians.

“The church must protect successful black people because today every successful black person is a criminal.

“When one of our own is under attack, instead of protecting that person, we join the chorus. And you don’t know that actually, in joining the chorus, you are undermining the work of God, because these are the products of God,” he said. – Additional reporting by Charl du Plessis and Sapa

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