Malema not a scapegoat - ANCYL
Johannesburg - The ANC Youth League denied on Wednesday that its president Julius Malema had cost the ANC minority votes, and said there was no need to find "scapegoats" for the drop in ANC support in last week's elections.
"It is a reality that, like in all the previous general and local government elections, the ANC has not enjoyed massive support from minorities, particularly white people," African National Congress Youth League spokesperson Floyd Shivambu said.
"The racial prejudices and stereotypes planted and cultivated by apartheid ideology of racism amongst many white people is a reality which should be confronted openly and not searching for scapegoats on the outcomes of the recent past local government elections.
"Looking for immediate scapegoats is neither helpful, nor visionary."
ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe conceded on Tuesday that there were communities which would be "switched off" by ANC leaders' comments which "appeared racist", but he said that South Africans remained "too over-sensitive to each other".
Asked about comments made by Malema, specifically, Mantashe replied: "Comments that are a departure from ANC policy, do not do good for the ANC."
Shivambu dismissed reports about Mantashe's statement as "media sensations".
"The decline of the coloured and Indian votes for the ANC cannot in any way be linked to the utterances of the ANCYL leadership.
"The view that white people do not vote for the ANC because of the utterances of the leadership of the ANCYL is the view expressed by the Madam [Democratic Alliance leader Helen Zille] in an attempt to divert our attention from real economic and social transformation issues," said Shivambu.
He said the ANCYL supported efforts by the ANC to investigate why it was losing support amongst the coloured and Indian communities.
"This should extend to efforts that seek to properly understand why an absolute majority of white people in South Africa have never supported the ANC."
The ANC lost about three percent support in local government elections last week, compared to 2006.