Malema’s Zim appearance called off over xenophobia

2015-05-05 16:56
Julius Malema. Picture Nasief Manie/Foto24

Julius Malema. Picture Nasief Manie/Foto24

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Johannesburg - EFF leader Julius Malema’s speaking engagement at a conference in Harare on Wednesday was cancelled at short notice after delegates boycotted the event due to the xenophobic attacks in South Africa. 

Malema was set to speak – xenophobia was one of the topics he was going to address – at a Game Changer series event in Harare on Wednesday. 

The organiser, Alpha Media Holdings Publisher Rita Chinyoka, said on Tuesday: “Unfortunately, a large portion of the delegates who had registered for this event started pulling out following the xenophobic attacks on foreigners in South Africa. 

“It is most unfortunate that the timing of this event coincided with this situation and, therefore, we could not ignore the sentiments expressed.” 

It is understood that the delegates objected to the fact that there was a South African speaker – Malema – set down for the event. 

She said AMH’s readers represented a “broad cross-section of Zimbabwe” and had to be respected. 

“We always plan to carry out events that represent our brands proudly and that enable discussions which are challenging and thought provoking,” she said. 

She said AMH hoped to host the event at a “more appropriate time in the near future”, and it believed that Malema was “a worthy Game Changer that is pushing the limits of our thinking about democracy and citizen activism in Africa”. 

Chinyoka apologised to Malema and his delegation about the cancellation. 

EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi referred queries to AMH, which is owned by Zimbabwean entrepreneur Trevor Ncube, who also owns the Mail & Guardian. 

The event was widely advertised in Zimbabwe’s media and about 250 to 300 people were expected to attend the event, where they would have paid $100 (R1 200) each to listen to Malema. 

Malema has been outspoken against xenophobic attacks. 

When he was president of the ANC Youth League, Malema visited Zimbabwe at the invitation of President Robert Mugabe.

Read more on:    eff  |  robert ­mugabe  |  julius malema  |  zimababwe  |  southern africa  |  politics  |  xenophobia

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