Malema challenges Trevor Manuel to ‘bring it on’

EFF leader Julius Malema addresses supporters at his party’s manifesto launch at Philippi Stadium in Cape Town. Picture: Lerato Maduna
EFF leader Julius Malema addresses supporters at his party’s manifesto launch at Philippi Stadium in Cape Town. Picture: Lerato Maduna

EFF leader Julius Malema says he will not shy away from doing battle with former finance minister Trevor Manuel, who he claims is part of a group running the country for the benefit of white people.

Responding to a legal threat from Manuel issued earlier this week, Malema told his supporters in Cape Town yesterday that he would not be intimidated by Manuel.

The war of words between the two men follows the announcement this week of Edward Kieswetter as the new SA Revenue Service (Sars) commissioner. The process to appoint the new commissioner was chaired by Manuel.

The EFF has rejected the appointment, claiming that Kieswetter is a known friend of Manuel’s. The party has also called for the process to be started again from scratch with different players.

Manuel subsequently issued a statement demanding that the EFF withdraw the claims of nepotism or face legal action.

Addressing EFF supporters at Philippi Stadium in Cape Town yesterday, where the party launched its Western Cape manifesto, Malema urged the crowd to vote for the EFF in their numbers on May 8 to prevent Manuel and his friends from completely capturing the country.

“Comrades at Sars have hired a commissioner who is a friend of Manuel because this government is run by friends, namely Cyril Ramaphosa, Trevor Manuel and Pravin Gordhan. Those friends are running things from Stellenbosch with the Rupert family. When we said Manuel has hired his friend in Sars, he said he was going to sue the EFF,” Malema said.

“I want to tell Trevor Manuel that we are not like that journalist you beat up with an umbrella in Polokwane; here you have met your match. Bring it on; we are ready for you. We are not scared of anyone, including Manuel.

“You thought [former president Jacob] Zuma was worse. You have not seen the worst. This is just the beginning where the families of white people, the Ruperts, the Oppenheimers with their co-opted black people, are going to be controlling everything unless we stop them on the 8th of May.”

The provincial manifesto launch followed an earlier rally in the Eastern Cape that Malema addressed.

Reiterating the promises made by the party in its manifesto, he told the Cape Town supporters that an EFF government would double social grants, open clinics that operate for 24 hours in every ward, provide free basic and higher education, and build quality RDP houses with flushing toilets and numerous rooms. He also used the occasion to warn against a resurgence of xenophobic attacks, particularly in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal.

Malema said he did not want the vote of any individual who participated in that “nonsense”. He called on black people to stop hating other blacks and to stop glorifying the borders that divided them.

Not forgetting Zuma, whom the party was instrumental in ousting during its first political term, Malema promised that a vote for the EFF would result in the immediate arrest of the former president, who is facing corruption charges.

“If you want to see Zuma arrested, vote for the EFF. And then a cellmate of Zuma, Cyril Ramaphosa, they will be together – that one for stealing money for Nkandla and this one for murder. And then they will be followed by Nomvula Mokonyane for Bosasa ... Then don’t forget Bathabile Dlamini.”

Meanwhile, at his other rally on the same day held in Mthatha, Malema invoked the Marikana tragedy to argue why voters should not vote for Ramaphosa.

Most of the mine workers who were killed by police originated from the Eastern Cape.

“Remember that this ANC is the one that killed your brothers and fathers in Marikana. So, on May 8 when you vote, you must remember the widows and children of those who were killed in Marikana,” he said.

The firebrand leader said that since the Marikana massacre in 2012 until today, no one had been fired, demoted or arrested. Instead, they were all promoted.

“Ramaphosa was a deputy president; today he is a president. He was rewarded for killing the children of the Eastern Cape. We must say enough is enough. We don’t want to see another Marikana in our lifetime,” said Malema.

The EFF leader said there should be a straight swop between Zuma and jailed abaThembu king Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo, with the former being arrested and the latter freed.

Dalindyebo is currently serving a 12-year jail sentence for various crimes, including arson, kidnapping, assault and defeating the ends of justice.

Malema said Dalindyebo was wrongfully arrested and that when the EFF came to power, it would release him and arrest “ANC thieves” instead.

“All of them must go to jail. When you are opening jail, as they enter, our king Dalindyebo will be coming out of jail ... Zuma is going to replace Dalindyebo. Thieves are outside and walking free while innocent people are in prison,” said Malema, to wild applause by thousands of EFF supporters who had painted the Walter Sisulu University Stadium red.

Malema said Mthatha should be industrialised in order to deal with the rampant unemployment there.

“Mthatha must be better than it was during the time of Matanzima [Kaiser Matanzima, a former ruler of the Transkei Bantustan] because now it is worse. Every street has a pothole and all streets are dirty. We want this place to be beautiful and we want to revive its economy so that we create decent jobs for the people of Mthatha,” he said.


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