Malema row shows 'discord' in ANC

2011-03-29 17:08

Johannesburg - The Democratic Alliance says the controversy over ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema's alleged criticism of President Jacob Zuma regarding the government's stance on Libya is the latest sign of "discord" in the ANC, "underscoring yet again that the ANC is at war with itself".

"There has been a significant increase in the public airing of grievances among members of the tripartite alliance of late," DA MP Wilmot James said.

"The consequences of a party at war with itself is that it is incapable of delivering to its constituency."

The Star newspaper reported on Tuesday that Malema had criticised Zuma in reference to the situation in Libya at a weekend conference in Limpopo, a move that could land him in hot water with the ANC.

'Bad advisers'

"South Africa voted in favour of imperialists, and we cannot smile about that.

"The ANC of Nelson Mandela would never have voted for the killing of fellow Africans imposed by our former masters," he reportedly said.

"Since he got into power, comrade Zuma has been surrounded by bad advisers.

"I'm dismayed and shocked at the way our country makes its decisions. How can they vote for the interests of the [United Nations] and the United States of America, a country which clearly wants control over oil reserves?"

In May, Malema had to make a public apology to Zuma after criticising him in public.

An ANC disciplinary committee also warned him that, should he be found guilty of contravening rule 25.5 (i) of the ANC constitution within the next two years, his membership would be summarily suspended.

Rumours

Earlier on Tuesday, the ANC questioned why it should take disciplinary action against Malema based on "rumours".

"Why would we be taking disciplinary action on the basis of allegations that are made? We don't act on rumours," said African National Congress spokesman Jackson Mthembu.

"All we are saying is, even if we were to take disciplinary action, we won't tell you," said Mthembu.

ANC Youth League spokesperson Floyd Shivambu questioned the accuracy of Tuesday's newspaper report.

Shivambu said Malema had criticised the government's support of a UN no-fly zone resolution in Libya, where leader Muammar Gaddafi's rule is under attack.

He said Malema had not personally attacked Zuma.

"He [Malema] never said that. He never said anything about all those things," Shivambu said of the report in The Star, claiming that The Star reporter was not at the conference.

"The ANC Youth League is in possession of an unedited video footage of the address by [the] ANCYL president and it shows that there was no mention of President Jacob Zuma on the address."

The Star defended its report, saying that three journalists worked on its story and that one of them attended the conference and had made notes of Malema's comments.

- SAPA
Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  ancyl  |  jacob zuma  |  julius malema  |  politics
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