Malema hits the campaign trail in Cape Town townships

2016-05-16 21:21
EFF leader Julius Malema hears the story of Sinoxolo's death in Khayelitsha from her brother Lonwabo Mafevuka and his wife Iminathi Mafevuka. (Jenni Evans, News24)

EFF leader Julius Malema hears the story of Sinoxolo's death in Khayelitsha from her brother Lonwabo Mafevuka and his wife Iminathi Mafevuka. (Jenni Evans, News24)

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Cape Town - EFF leader Julius Malema hit the campaign trail on Monday with a whirlwind tour of three of Cape Town's townships.

Sitting in a worn floral armchair in the small shack once home to 19-year-old Sinoxolo Mafevuka, who was found murdered in a nearby communal toilet in March, he listened as her brother Lonwabo recalled the day she was found dead.

He asked questions gently and offered his sympathy and support as people stood against the turquoise-washed walls.

Some EFF members quietly left a few gift-wrapped household items and a carpet for the bare floor as Malema followed the Mafevukas to the toilets where she was found.

He scanned the secluded outdoor toilet area where Sinoxolo's body was found and watched the women sharing a few taps to get water. The toilet had since been demolished, but in the distance, three leaning portaloos remained.

“We are going to use this case to put a fight that you get toilets, all of you in your yard. A toilet isn't supposed to be a dream,” Malema said.

“Even this thing of bringing the washing here, into a communal area, it's wrong,” he said as women did their laundry in the open around taps in the veld.

“We are not going to rest until all of you get proper houses and electricity,” promised Malema as flies buzzed and the air reeked of faeces.

A separate contingent of EFF supporters broke away to travel to the Khayelitsha Magistrate's Courts where two cousins appeared again in connection with her murder.

The court heard that a witness had seen Mafevuka being dragged to the toilet the early hours of the morning on March 2. He hid in the shadows so they would not see him.

The two are cousins of the dead girl's boyfriend. The court heard previously that before her death, they had confronted her for speaking to another man.

In Langa, Malema visited an orphanage for 25 young girls and women where housemother Nomute Fubhane has made a place away from drugs and other debilitating influences. Bunk beds were crammed into her tiny shack.

The group presented a few musical items to Malema as neighbours crammed into the narrow alley leading to the orphanage to get a view.

On his next stop, he pledged the party's support to Sivuyile Mkaza who was caught up in a dispute over ownership of a house he had lived in until retirement. Mkaza thought he had paid the house off but was then evicted and the bank sold the house on auction.

Locals set up a fund to raise money to help Mkaza and his family. So far, they had raised R10 000.

Malema told the elderly Mkaza, sitting in a garden chair set up for him in the street, that the EFF would meet the new owners and discuss the dispute with them.

Nontando Nolutshungu said the community had contacted all political parties they could think of, but that the EFF was the only party to respond.

When Malema wanted to leave, he was besieged by shrieking girls who laughed as he elbowed his way back to his car.

‘The EFF will be with you’

Malema ended his visits with a speech in Dunoon, outside Table View, where he encouraged people who had been trying to occupy vacant land in the area, to keep at it.

''Don't be tired. The struggle is like that until you get your freedom. Everywhere else where there is land to be occupied, take your chance. 'What are you waiting for? You've got the power, the EFF will be with you.''

In March, people in the area protested when officials removed a group which had built houses on unoccupied land.

The N7 which runs past Dunoon was blocked and the Dunoon MyCiti bus station was damaged.

''You must never get tired of occupying. And don't occupy with expensive material. Take old material, occupy, and when they remove you, after two weeks come back.''

He delighted about 1 000 people who had gathered on a dusty, litter-strewn field with jibes at President Jacob Zuma, whom he called a ''thief'' and Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane, ''a puppet''.

Malema said they must not be fooled by people who played on Nelson Mandela's heritage and handed out food parcels and T-shirts to get votes.

''You are not voting for the Congress of Madiba, you are voting for the congress of Zuma.''

Read more on:    eff  |  julius malema  |  cape town  |  local elections 2016

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