Although some people in Zambia admire South Africa Economic Freedom Fighters leader Julius Malema, the outspoken young politician is a divisive demagogue who does not practice what he preaches. He cannot speak for poor South Africans because his wealth seems to be a loot off government contracts
|Malema is a dangerous Demagogue (source telegraph)|
By Nyalubinge Ngwende
Malema is a tax evader. When he talks of economic liberation, he does not speak for the poor but for himself and his cohort of the Economic Freedom Fighters.
In February this year his household goods went under the auction hammer in an attempt by the sheriff office to recover R16 million in tax debt he failed to remit to Sars (South Africa Revenue Services). This is after a report by audit firm PwC (Price Water House Coopers) revealed that the former ANC Youth League leader spent R291 000 on clothes at an Italian boutique store and more than R31 000 on Louis Vuitton designer clothes.
Apart from under declaring taxes to the South Africa tax authorities, Malema is highly believed to have made his fortune through corrupt activities involving Limpopo government contracts.
Malema is powerful and influential, but his political objectives are misplaced; mostly driven by the selfish of improverished upbringing which has not yet matured to understand that poverty cannot be blamed on those who work to build their businesses.
Julius Malema is divisive figure and wants to emerge as a Madiba for South Africa’s economic emancipation. What he is to South Africa is not the asset Mandela was, has been and will remain to be in posterity, but a true replica of Adolf Hitler to German. Robert Mugabe in the neighbouring Zimbabwe could even be dwarfed by the damage Malema might wreck in Subsaharan Africa’s most developed country.
While Malema brings the question of what the South African liberation struggle was all about into public debate, his answer does not seek the political tact and wisdom of Mandela to build a united or Rainbow nation out of South Africa, instead he may cause a serious eclipse that may permanently stagnate the progress in South Africa.
He has got the youth into his wings, most of them who are following blindly trying to blame all the poverty among blacks as the legacy bequeathed by apartheid.
“While he reminds us of the promises of the liberation struggle he also scares us of a possible fascist future, perceived or real. This is why Max du Preez simply cannot understand what attracts nice people to the EFF,” wrote the South Africa Media at one time.
Malema does not qualify to speak for the poor. He has a huge buggage of things that show he does not fit in the poor’s needs—evading tax and living a ravish life off an icing of corrupt deals.
Malema wants to afford wealth without working for it.
The City Press report in 2010 acused Malema’s company SGL Engineering of taking contracts worth at least R140 million in government tenders. It was reported that:
“Malema (28), and his business partner at SGL Engineering, Lesiba Cuthbert Gwangwa, 31, are multi-faceted young businessmen. Their company has won tenders for road construction, street paving, sewer reticulation, bulk water supply, landfill sites, cemeteries, central business district upgrades and provision of drainage systems.
City Press also reported last year that at least three of several multi-million-rand bridges and roads built by Julius Malema’s company in Limpopo were washed away within weeks of their completion.
So Malema become rich off public money while the public were left with nothing. It is clear that Malema is a multimillionaire through unjust means. He is the man who gains riches by unjust means. He is like a partridge that hatches eggs it did not lay.
Malema now faces corruption charges involving R4 million and is appearing in a Limpompo Court, alongside his business partners Kagisho Dichabe, Lesiba Gwangwa, Helen Moreroa, and Makgetsi Manthata.
However he denies stealing from the public coffers and was quoted telling his supporters at the recent appearance at the Limpompo court grounds: “I will never betray you. I did not steal from you. I will never steal from you. I will never do that to you. In my family, I don’t have a history of criminals.”
These stories and many more of corruption and racketeering do not make Malema a figure that black South Africans need. His thinking is not theirs and if they follow him without developing own social consciousness it may be too late to realise that they put a demagogue in power.
Some sections of the media have described him as:
“an idle leech who lives off government tenders – lots of them – and is exceedingly rich. People like Malema raise the cost of delivery in South Africa – to the detriment of the poor — because they cannot do the work they win tenders to do”.
Malema talks of economic liberation or empowerment for blacks but his so much ill gotten riches are spent ravishly on expensive clothes and is hardly reinvesting to create employment for the youth in poor shacks
|Malema (source Namibian)|
Just as he is a charlatan, his policies come to challenge the progress in South Africa that, those who have failed to tap into that progress, think creating the easy way out is the formula. The Boers never used political power to create empires of their businesses, they worked hard and still do. Malema wants to revenge the injustices of the apartheid era.
Land redistribution and nationalisation are as bad as having Malema takeover the running of South Africa. It is not the poor who are going to have the land or the companies, but Malema and his business friends, not to build, but completely collapse all that has been built over years to rubble.
The Boers run businesses that employ black South Africans, Malema makes it by tenderprising—what has become as a legal way of taking money from taxpayers and the poor and spending it ravishly on clothes, women and Champagne.
He has never taken any business risk, but he is stinking rich and can hardly give a television interview on how to run a successful business.
The wrong end of the handle about his nationalisation is that the people he wants to grab businesses from are not foreign investors and do not repatriate profits to their countries in Europe. South Africa white owned companies have invested in Botswana, Namibia, Angola and Congo DR and bring money home into South Africa. What Julius wants to do is revenge against the apartheid era injustices against the Boers.
No matter how bad Malema’s message is to sensible people, it shocks how it still settles well with others. It gives hope to the desparate people that things could get better if government took over mines, banks and white farms. People have something else to listen to than the many promises of ANC that are yet to deliver. But that does not make Malema any angel, he still is a charlatan and demagogue.
Malema is not as stable as people might be made to think. He is and completely stands for nothing. He is a person who has made wild statements that can inflame any society and is even more dangerous to post apartheid South Africa, something that does not fit his claims to have been schooled by the Madiba institution of politics.
Malema is ill educated and and young men follow him because he is of their kind. He plays on their minds because they do not have the education or the background to find jobs. Seeing others getting rich, they are bitter and think Malema, who shares their profile but has used his political fortunes to acquire wealth, could be the help they need.
His appetite for racist remarks is also unbriddled, at one time he denounced a BBC journalist Jonah Fisher about as a “bloody agent” and a “bastard”.
In March 2010 - Malema Malema burst in hurt speech, singing the liberation struggle militant song ‘Dubula Ibhunu’ (Shoot the Boer) at a rally on a university campus, a mark of approach late former President Nelson Mandela would not agree with not even in an inch.
He is tracing Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe socialist trajectory, accusing white farners of stealing land from indigenous people and wants the land seizures that has left the neighbouring country’s farming paralysed to be transposed into South Africa.
The EFF's founding manifesto, released in July this year demands that all land should be transferred, without compensation, to the state. He also wants to nationalise the mines.
Malema has been recently quoted saying the next step after political liberation for South Africa was "nationalisation of mines, banks and strategic sectors of the economy, including seizure of land."
When asked whether his plans would scare off foreign investors, Malema said:
"You see when you say foreign investors, you want to say white people, because, I mean, there's no black foreign investor. There’s no African foreign investor. If they go, let them go."
In August this year Agang leader Mamphela Ramphele compared Julius Malema to Hitler and Mussolini.
Delivering a lecture at a Polokwane high school, Ramphele said Malema was a desperate leader making dangerous promises on land expropriation to desperate people, like the Nazi leader Hitler and Italian Fascist leader Mussolin.