Malema: I've never had a formal job
The African National Congress disciplinary committee ruled last week against Julius Malema, 30, for questioning President Jacob Zuma's leadership and support for the government of neighbouring Botswana, which the ANC Youth League had labelled imperialist.
In his first news conference since that ruling, Malema said on Wednesday that "only the wilfully blind can believe that this matter is purely about discipline and not intended to settle political scores and stifle debate."
Here are some of Malema’s best quotes from the news conference:
- "As a a disciplined force, the ANCYL will follow all internal ANC processes to challenge these findings."
- "Our battle cry is unban the ANC youth league to defend the voice of the voiceless."
- "President Zuma is the president of the ANC... I can't have feelings for him... My relationship with Zuma remains a political one."
- "We will decide when the time is right whether there is a need for President Zuma to continue or not continue."
- "I am born African National Congress. I will die African National Congress."
- "Suspended for five years is much better than 27 years in jail... I'll come back in five years and continue the struggle."
- I've never had a formal job. I've never been a garden boy or a factory worker or in government. So how can I influence tenders?"
- "I'm not worried about being locked up by the Hawk or the public protector...I am one person who is not easily intimidated."
- "Hawks must come and tell me what I did wrong. South Africa is not a banana republic. I will not be intimidated. I am not scared of jail. Not even jail doors will stop the ideas we are advocating. Let them lock me up," he said referring to allegations that the Hawks were investigating him.
- "When there is corruption it must be reported."
- "I still want evidence from the City Press that I've accepted R200 000 bribes."
- "Some of those ANC members convicted of drinking and driving should have undergone a disciplinary hearing."
- "Let the enemy celebrate. That celebration will be short-lived," he said about the people celebrating his suspension.
- "Even if I'm on the street for five years I'll come back" to the ANC.
- "Resistance is a part of me. Defiance is a part of me. This is how I was brought up. If I am not convinced, I am not convinced."