Malema: Do you know who I am?

2009-10-31 16:21

NINE Limpopo traffic officers are in hot water for daring to stop ANC Youth League (ANCYL) president Julius Malema for allegedly driving over the speed limit.

Malema’s Range Rover was allegedly caught on camera speeding on the road between Polokwane and his home town of Seshego a fortnight ago. It is also alleged that the provincial roads and transport department ordered the cops to give written statements on why they had “ill-treated” Malema.

At least three sources, two traffic cops who were at the scene and another employee of the provincial roads department, said nine officers stopped Malema’s racing black Range Rover at the Seshego traffic circle on Wednesday October 14.

When the officers flagged it down the driver started flashing his headlights, suggesting he was in a hurry and could not stop.

The cops, who apparently were not aware it was the Youth League boss’s car, physically moved onto the road to force it to a halt.

The driver stopped in the middle of the road, blocking traffic in the process, the officers added.

Malema and other occupants of the car then allegedly stormed out; leaving all four doors open, and verbally abused the officers.

Malema allegedly asked the officers: “Who do you think you are? Are you not aware that I am Julius, the president of the Youth League? I know that some of you hate me.”

He then allegedly made several calls at the scene to senior ANC and government officials, instructing them to “discipline” the policemen.

The traffic officers said Malema called roads MEC Pinkie Kekana, who contacted departmental head Ntau Letebelele, who then ordered his general manager for traffic, Walter Sathekge, to rush to the scene.

When Sathekge arrived at the scene he asked his officers to give him an account of the circumstances leading to Malema being stopped.

The department reportedly followed up the matter the following day, issuing the cops with letters in which it demanded written statements on their alleged mistreatment of the youth leader.

One of the cops said all nine of them decided to write a joint reply in which they refused to give written statements until the department had produced a written complaint from Malema.

“We cannot just respond to verbal complaints from Julius. If Julius complained, they must show us a ­letter in which he says what happened and how we ill-treated him,” said the officer.

Roads department spokesperson Wisani Ngobeni dismissed the allegations as a “hoax” and “hearsay”.

He said his department had no record of the incident, which meant it “probably never happened”.

“Overall, all the questions posed by City Press with regard to the alleged incident appear to be founded on hearsay… it appears to us that the alleged incident may possibly be a hoax, the intention of which we have no knowledge of,” he said.

Malema yesterday dismissed the allegations as “rubbish”: “I do not care about you. I do not care about City Press,” he charged. “You must never again call me for a comment. I do not want your ugly voice on my cellphone any more.”

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