I am the ANC, I can’t take myself to court, Says Malema

By IndepthAfrica
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May 14th, 2012
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Embattled African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL) leader Julius Malema, Friday, Feb. 10, 2012, near Pretpria, South Africa, during his first public appearance since an appeals ruling to dismiss him from the ruling party was upheld. Malema said he is preparing for life outside the ANC and that his address Friday, may be a farewell speech, to his supporters. (AP Photo/Denis Farrell)

Johannesburg – Expelled ANCYL president Julius Malema said on Monday that he would never challenge his expulsion from the ANC in court, saying “I am the ANC, I can’t take myself to court”.

Malema said he still considered himself a member of the ANC, albeit an “expelled member”.

He said he would never challenge his expulsion in court.

“I am the ANC, I can’t take myself to court.”

Malema said ANCYL leadership had been politically targeted during the disciplinary hearings, and said it was unfair they had not been allowed to disagree on policy issues.

It was his first media briefing since he was expelled from the ANC on April 24. The event was arranged by the National Press Club.

Targeted

He said he and his grandmother had not sat in her kitchen and made a resolution on Botswana – it was an ANCYL decision.

Malema said there had been no sanctions against the people in the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal who had threatened to kill him.

It was because the ANCYL wanted radical economic change that it was targeted.

He thanked ANCYL supporters for their support and called on them to stay behind its leadership.

Malema said ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe had sent a letter to branches saying he could not speak there or on a public platform.

He would still travel to branches, but he would not force himself in places where he was not welcome, he said.

‘A’ leader, not ‘the’ leader

“I will lead this ANC. You must put it on the archive. I am going to be a leader of the African National Congress,” he told reporters.

“It doesn’t matter what time it takes, I will lead the African National Congress,” he said.

“For a diamond to shine it goes through a thorough process of being polished.”

Asked what he meant by “leader”, Malema said he was speaking about being on a structure like a provincial executive committee, as he was before in his home province of Limpopo.

“That’s why I’m saying: ‘a’ leader, not ‘the’ leader.”

Tending cattle

He said he had returned to Johannesburg, not only because he was interested in reclaiming the presidency of the ANCYL, but because it had summoned him from Limpopo, where he had been tending cattle.

It was not his call to decide whether he would become president.

“It is for the membership of the youth league to make that call at that time,” he said.

Malema was expelled from the ANC for unfavourably comparing the leadership style of President Jacob Zuma to that of former president Thabo Mbeki, and for remarks on bringing about regime change in Botswana.

Malema was flanked by Floyd Shivambu, the ANCYL’s spokesperson, who was suspended from the ANC for three years for swearing at a journalist and for issuing a statement calling for a change of government in Botswana.

My blood is black, green and gold

Also with him was ANCYL secretary general Sindiso Magaqa, who was also suspended from the ANC, but whose period of suspension was reduced from three years to one year on appeal. He made derogatory remarks about Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba and the ANC’s stance on nationalisation.

He would also not start a breakaway political party.

“It has never crossed my mind. I will never do that,” Malema said.

“My blood is black, green and gold. I will die in the ANC. I will stay and sleep here, outside the gate of the ANC. My umbilical cord was buried here in the ANC.”
– SAPA

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