Cope wants probe into 'thug' Malema
Johannesburg - Cope on Monday called for an urgent police investigation into ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema.
"News that ANCYL boss Julius Malema has a secret trust fund that is possibly bankrolling his lavish lifestyle is a serious cause for concern," spokesperson Dennis Bloem said.
He called for a special probe by the South African Revenue Service (Sars) into Malema's lifestyle, as the allegation amounts to corruption and warrants a police investigation.
"The fact that Malema and his lawyers tried unsuccessfully to stop City Press from publishing the story on Sunday can only mean there is a lot to hide."
He said Malema's behaviour suggested he was "a thug who is quick in attempting to stop those who are willing to expose him, as he has for years portrayed himself as untouchable".
It was disgusting that he was a man who claims to be poor and a champion of the struggle of the poor and working class when he was doing the contrary, "spitting in their face," Bloem said.
He also called for a probe into the finances of the businesspeople who were found to have deposited money into Malema's trust account.
"Despite the fact that he always argues that he is not rich, Cope believes it's time Sars launch an investigation into Malema as we strongly believe that a sinister motive lies behind his dealings.
"Malema must also disclose businesspeople and politicians allegedly regularly donating money into his account."
He said police should also investigate to what extent Malema influenced businesspeople securing lucrative government tenders.
Cope further said those who were calling the report by City Press a political ploy only wanted to protect their friends who were "involved in shady dealings".
"Cope believes it is high time Malema is exposed for the liar he really is," Bloem said.
Earlier on Monday the Congress of SA Trade Union (Cosatu) in Limpopo backed a call by Cosatu's national office for an investigation into Malema's secret trust.
City Press reported that Malema was the sole trustee of a secret family trust, registered in the name of his 5-year-old son, which he allegedly uses to finance his lavish lifestyle.
According to the newspaper, the Ratanang Family Trust was registered at the Office of the Master of the High Court in Pretoria in 2008, weeks after Malema was first elected youth league president.
Citing two “independent, well-placed sources with knowledge of Malema's financial dealings”, City Press reported the trust was being used “by the youth leader and his benefactors” to fund his lifestyle.
ANCYL secretary Sindiso Magaqa said on Monday the trust was used for various charitable causes.