Will they or won't they - ANC set to make Malema call
Cape Town - Embattled African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL) leader Julius Malema, under fire from the ANC's top brass, will hear on Friday whether the party's national disciplinary committee will go ahead with charges brought against him.
He and five other high-ranking youth league officials have been brought before the committee on charges of bringing the ANC into disrepute and sowing divisions in ANC ranks.
On Wednesday, the committee refused an application brought by the youth league president for the recusal of three of its members.
It found that insufficient facts had been presented to show bias or a perception of bias by chairperson Derek Hanekom, Mining Minister Susan Shabangu and Minister in the Presidency Collins Chabane, a statement said.
Malema recently said the African National Congress Youth League would send a team to Botswana to consolidate local opposition parties and to help bring about regime change, as it believed the government there was "in full co-operation with imperialists" and undermining the "African agenda".
Charged with Malema are ANCYL spokesperson Floyd Shivambu, deputy president Ronald Lamola, treasurer general Pule Mabe, secretary general Sindiso Magaqa and deputy secretary general Kenetswe Masenogi.
All except Shivambu would appear before the committee on Friday. His disciplinary hearing had been postponed to a later date.
The hearing had been adjourned to Friday to give the committee time to decide on Malema's application for the charges to be dropped.
The disciplinary committee would deliver its ruling at 09:00.
On Tuesday, groups of youths supporting Malema and his colleagues threw rocks, bottles and bricks at journalists and police in the Johannesburg CBD, and burnt pictures of President Jacob Zuma.
The violence subsided after Malema addressed them.
A small number of supporters marched in the streets around the ANC's Luthuli House headquarters, where the hearings are being held, on Wednesday.
They whistled, blew vuvuzelas, pointed at the building and shouted "voetsek" at policemen.
The police said they have identified people involved in the unrest.
"Those who were involved in acts of violence have been identified and arrests may be effected while the investigation progresses," Gauteng police spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Lungelo Dlamini said.
The violence had initially caused the ANC to change the venue of the hearings from Luthuli House, but by Wednesday morning it had made an about-turn, saying that it would move to an alternative venue only if the situation didn't improve.