Malema bans amaBhungane and Daily Maverick's Scorpio from EFF events: 'We shall treat them as enemies'

Similar to US President Donald Trump, EFF leader Julius Malema has taken to targeting news organisations who expose alleged wrongdoing by himself and some of his colleagues. (Sarel van der Walt, Netwerk24)
Similar to US President Donald Trump, EFF leader Julius Malema has taken to targeting news organisations who expose alleged wrongdoing by himself and some of his colleagues. (Sarel van der Walt, Netwerk24)

EFF leader Julius Malema has banned investigative journalism units amaBhungane and Daily Maverick's Scorpio from attending party events.

Malema said this on Thursday during the EFF memorial service for former Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe. 

Speaking to party supporters, Malema said the two publications should be treated as the enemy, much like the EFF did when it banned Gupta-owned The New Age newspaper and broadcaster ANN7. 

The ban comes after the units published an exposé on Malema, party deputy president Floyd Shivambu and Shivambu's brother Brian, as well as Malema's cousin, implicating them in the illicit flow of funds.

Mapping out the VBS money trail, Scorpio uncovered a R16.1m transfer from VBS to Brian Shivambu's company Sgameka Projects – effectively a shell company. Scorpio found that at least R5.3m of the R16.1m flowed to Mahuna Investments, according to official Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) documents.

Scorpio reported that Malema used Mahuna Investments' business account as his "personal slush fund and alter ego".

"Our people will never be told by Daily Maverick and amaBhungane who their leaders are," Malema told attendees. 

'Let them write any nonsense'

He described the two publications as frauds, designed to pursue the interest of Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan.

"We declare them as an enemy of the revolution, they should never participate in our events, we should never answer any question from amaBhungane, Daily Maverick from Scorpio. Let them write any nonsense they want to write about us. We know [the person] who writes their questions is Pravin."

He said he did not fear any reaction from the media, adding they already made him out to be a pariah.

"We shall treat them as enemies. Anyone who wants to go into solidarity with them in the media houses, you are more than welcome. Anyway, we are not getting any coverage. It's not coverage what you are giving to us. It's nonsense."

He accused news channel eNCA of manipulating stories against him to portray him as a gangster. He further claimed the media had an agenda to distort pictures, to darken his likeness, in order to make him appear undesirable.

"We must never rely on the media to wage a revolution. We must rely on the ground, we must do door to door. We just do person to person. We must spread our message. We must be rooted to our people. House by house, brick by brick, our people will get our message. 

"We don't need to go between, because they distort what we stand for."

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