Defiant Malema dangles red flag before Oliphant

2014-09-04 21:16

Cape Town - Julius Malema clashed with Deputy Mineral Resources Minister Godfrey Oliphant in Parliament on Thursday, telling him that he failed to grasp issues and that the EFF would keep on bringing up Marikana because it was a thorny issue for the ANC.

Malema on Thursday took his call for the nationalisation of mines to the National Assembly and urged, unsuccessfully, for it to appoint a committee to probe the plight of mine workers.

"The mineral resources of this country belongs to all South Africans and only through nationalisation will the country enjoy a more democratic and socialised ownership and control of mineral wealth by all including the workers," the Economic Freedom Fighters' leader said in a speech to the assembly.

Malema said most mineworkers still earned between R4 000 and R6 000 a month and politicians needed to ensure they were not paid less than R12 500 - the sum demanded by the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) in this year's five-month platinum strike.

"The problem is that mining companies refuse to shed off their historical baggage, and still exercise authority to continue the pre-apartheid and apartheid project of enslaving Africans in these mines and rejecting them in the land of their own birth."

Malema added that historically mining houses were drawn to South Africa by cheap black labour, "labour that has been, and still is working and living in slave-like conditions".

The mineworkers' community was plagued by occupational disease, and many were driven to suicide because their self-esteem was eroded by their inability to support their families, he added.

Malema therefore called on Parliament to set up a commission to probe the remuneration and working conditions of mineworkers.

It should consider the practice of transfer pricing, the affordability of a minimum sectoral wage of R12 500 and new legislation to impose standards on housing and health care on mining houses.

Malema found support from the Congress of the People's Willie Madisha, who said: "We need to follow the Nordic model of injecting a healthy dose of socialism in a capitalist order of the day. In the complex world of today it is not either/or."

Clash with Oliphant

But the EFF leader was accused of populism by the Democratic Alliance for calling for nationalisation. Oliphant suggested Malema was uninformed and unqualified to plead the cause of miners because he had never set foot underground.

Oliphant said the ANC remained committed to introducing a national minimum wage for all workers and its members could talk with authority on mines, "not you".

"The struggle for better conditions for mineworkers is historical and continues to be of utmost priority to the African National Congress," he said.

"It is difficult to argue with people who have the laws in front of them, they distort them, they come and talk about mineworkers and some of them have never seen an underground mine in their lives."

He said it was a distortion to hold up Marikana as representative of the industry and insisted that implementation of the Mining Charter had led to considerable improvement in living conditions for miners elsewhere.

"There are over 1 700 mines in this country. That one is just one of them."

Malema countered that it was naive to argue that he could not pronounce on the plight of miners because he was not one of them.

"It looks like you are going to be a deputy minister for a very long time because of your lack of grasping of issues," he told Oliphant.

'We will mention Marikana until you become red'

"We are mentioning Marikana because there was killing of people in Marikana and we mention it deliberately because it pains you, and we are going to mention it until you become red.

"We know this country and therefore you are not qualified to tell us that we mention Marikana because we don't know other mines. That is being naive to even suggest that people can only talk about the mines if they have been underground. That is so petty and naive."

When asked to withdraw the statement he refused.

DA parliamentary leader Mmusi Maimane supported Malema's call for the legislature to look into living conditions at mines, but said the EFF and ANC's economic and labour policies were a recipe for further job losses in the sector.

"What is happening in our mining industry is a disgrace. The conditions that existed at Marikana prior to the massacre still exist today," Maimane said.

He added: "The EFF-ANC approach to mining will be disastrous. It will mean more mineworkers will be unemployed; it will result in more cronyism and corruption; it will hurt the very people it is supposedly meant to help."

The DA proposed that a parliamentary committee mull challenges South Africa faced in drawing investment to the mining sector and combating job losses.

Malema retorted to Maimane that "nobody will take away the right of miners to strike".

Both the EFF and the DA's proposals were voted down. The ruling party said there was no need for a parliamentary committee as government was monitoring mining houses' compliance with the charter.

"We don't need this ad hoc committee," ANC Chief Whip Stone Sizani said.

  • Paul Gevers - 2014-09-04 21:23

    Now this nitwit is at it again. What a toolbox.

      Godfrey Welman - 2014-09-04 22:32

      Love him or hate him, Malema is getting the ANC to spell-out their real policy and will not be able to fool the masses, during next election campaign, like "we will fight for living wage (R12,500)'

      Nico de Jongh - 2014-09-04 23:15

      .. 'nationalisation will the country enjoy a more democratic and socialised'.. spelt with a z, tetkop. Anyhow, notice how this spin doctor combines national, social and democracy in one sentence.. of course the dumb and stupid will swallows this crap like passion fruit mixed with malpitte.

  • Jamill Ahmed - 2014-09-04 21:28

    Ahh the clown is back

  • leon.vry - 2014-09-04 21:30

    The gravy from the magic train will clog this clown's arteries soon....

  • Motofogo Mulilo - 2014-09-04 21:32

    .....'You will be deputy minister for a long time'...... LoL.

      Ntumeng Caroline - 2014-09-04 21:44

      I also like that one. Hahahaha huuuu.

      Ntsikei Maphango Gomza - 2014-09-04 21:59

      Oliphant, Oliphant ......

  • Lawrence Sefolo - 2014-09-04 21:44

    News24 please stop giving this boy publicity. We sick and tired of him

  • Vuyani Piti's Zondi - 2014-09-04 21:45

    Juju is exposing ANC day by day that parliament, keep up the good work Juju.

  • Warren Beard - 2014-09-04 21:59

    I disagree that Mr Malema understands politics as mentioned here. The reality is that in Australia Rock Drillers earn 10-times that of Rock Drillers in South Africa because they are highly mechanized. A single Rock Driller in Australia can do the work of a 100 men in South Africa. The mining sector has deliberately been kept mining ‘manual’ to keep employment numbers up. The real issue is the inability of the ANC to set policy that leads to economic growth and ultimately jobs!

      Sanelisiwe Myeni - 2014-09-04 22:10

      You making a good point here bt den if it was da australian way den dat means 99 of these RDOs wd be unemployed if 1 guy can do a 100 mens job..

      Deepandsoulfulhouse DjVido Buka - 2014-09-04 23:26

      Warren, well articulated Cow Manure

      Lethukuthula Maphumulo - 2014-09-04 23:34

      I concur with you on the point of the mining sector keeping mining manual, should we continue fighting these companies in the manner we are doing!! They will definitely introduce such technology in the sector and thousands will loose jobs and the few left behind will score on their Salaries. On the Policy issue.... Iyooh that's a tough one, you may not agree with me on this one, What his Excellency Robert Mugabe is doing in Zimbabwe is what we should be practising in SA. The policy that make sure that the "Private Sector" leaves more profit in the country than it takes out..... Once sanctions are totally removed from ZIM, their economy will grow more than any other country in the SADC countries. South Africans will be looking for jobs there.

      Mashai Joannes - 2014-09-05 06:17

      One would ask whether u hv been in australia,researched the labour dynamics there.did face to face interview with workers there.if not I dismiss your statements as baseless and inherent on heresay.

  • Robert Magaya Cele - 2014-09-04 21:59

    I don't think that anc is there for the majority, but they are there for keeping zuma in comfort, defending for only him. People should wake-up

  • Pogiso Mekgwe - 2014-09-04 22:09

    freedom of speech,@least this one didnt take it personal,Mbete must learn,

  • Goodman Vusi - 2014-09-04 22:18

    I am not an EFF man but I will be happy if Juju can be the president of SA and bring freedom to ppl not to friends .or RDP houses. ANC is have sold the country just for few individuals. Really blacks are not free at all. Juju take it easy u will get there. ppl of the soil are behind u.

  • - 2014-09-04 22:18

    What happened to the freedom charter?

  • Senolo George - 2014-09-04 22:20

    First Oliphant ws mildred,nw its godfrey&others,dis surname is running de parly,&none have logic,watch dis nepotism space...

  • Lucky Tiva - 2014-09-04 22:21

    Thn commander was in an uncompromising mood today.its either you're with him or at the recieving. end.

  • Bucho Lecious Tladi - 2014-09-04 22:22

    The value of GOLD and DIAMOND is very,very,very high,but the people who are digging this minerals are treated badly by this FAT CATS(POLITICIANS-MINE OWNERS) AND CAPITALISTS.This must come to an end.

  • Romeo Randy Cruise - 2014-09-04 22:22

    "You will be deputy minister for a long time".loll this guy can poke u till ur feet sweat.

  • Gratitude Ncube - 2014-09-04 22:26

    juju juju jujunation

  • Chimzy Waha Nekhavhambe - 2014-09-04 22:29

    I can't see likes on my comments

  • Dan Skosana - 2014-09-04 22:31

    It is hot in there! One can argue as much as he want but what counts at the end is the number of hands.

  • Micheal Mafunisa Nethononda - 2014-09-04 22:33

    We will mention marikana until you become red. I like that Asijiki

  • Lucky Tiva - 2014-09-04 22:34

    Doesn't Oliphant has the ambitions of being a minister kanti?lol#Juju taking this man to the cleaners!

  • - 2014-09-04 22:35

    Minority can't control the majority...Ezwelethu!!!

  • Hennis Le Roux - 2014-09-04 22:44

    Educated. ..I think not

  • Xivuri Travor - 2014-09-04 22:45

    No system is perfect, so don't be afraid if new systems are tested. It's just a fear for change.

  • Goodman Vusi - 2014-09-04 22:45

    ppl who think that Juju can bring this country on knees he might from another world . This government have already finished it. What is left now is to be on fire. just watch. Juju and his party don't need to spend Millions in court to bring the country to everyone equally they just have the ball.

  • Lums Zindela - 2014-09-04 22:55

    Ehhmm, honourable deputy minister, .... It looks like you are going to be a deputy minister forever because of your lack of grasping of issues. We will mention Marikana until you become red' wow did you see that one coming?

  • Everton Bouwer - 2014-09-04 23:24

    I must commend Mr.Malema on his boldness to address thorny issues.SA politics has never been so shaken up!I am enjoying it while it lasts,because history teaches us that there are only 2 roads for Juju to take.There can be no middle-path for him.Either he goes for gold and takes it,or he dies trying.Men like him only come once in awhile and they are destined to leave a mark on this world.In parliament,his mark is already evident.

      Molefi Leviy Motshabi - 2014-09-05 00:24

      this majority rule is boring cause even if real issues are raised as long as its not anc members raising them they will be voted out.

  • Trueza Mhlaba - 2014-09-05 00:53

    It is Parliament who is defiant no EFF, Mr Ramaphosa, Parliament and the ANC must pay for ordering the shooting of the Marikana mine workers, the Police were only following orders and nothing more... SA will never be the same until the Marikana Indaba is resolved....

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