AFRICANGLOBE – Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema has predicted that President Jacob Zuma will not serve his full five-year term in office.
Addressing the Cape Town Press Club on Thursday, Mr. Malema cited the issue of the R246m security upgrades to Mr. Zuma’s private residence at Nkandla.
He said Mr. Zuma only cared about money and he should “pay back the money” for the upgrades. “Mr. Zuma is in trouble because if he pays the money he would be accepting that he took money that was not due to him and that means he made a poor judgment and he is not fit to be president. I foresee more problems for Mr. Zuma (and the ANC).”
Democratic Alliance leader Helen Zille “is on his neck”, Mr. Malema said. She had to use the so-called spy tapes in the application for a court review of the National Prosecuting Authority’s decision not to prosecute Mr. Zuma.
Mr. Malema was talking to an audience of largely White middle-aged people who laughed with him and seemed to agree with the points he was making. His denunciation of the ANC and Mr. Zuma in particular held the audience’s attention.
At one stage a member of the audience exclaimed: “You’re not as terrible as we believed you were.”
ANC communications manager Keith Khoza described Mr. Malema’s comments on removal of Mr. Zuma as wishful thinking. “How can he say something like that? He is not a member of the ANC,” he said.
Mr. Khoza said there were no grounds for the ANC to remove Mr Zuma from office because he had not been found guilty of anything.
Mr. Malema, who was expelled from the ANC when he was president of its youth league, apologised for supporting Mr. Zuma to become the leader of the ruling party in 2009. “We sold (the SA people) a nothing and we are sorry,” he said.
Mr. Malema singled out former finance minister Trevor Manuel as an example of how the ANC leadership embraced Mr. Zuma. ” I served with Trevor Manuel on the NWC (ANC’s national working committee),” said Mr. Malema, recounting how at the committee’s weekly meetings Mr. Zuma would deliver a speech that Mr. Manuel would praise. “Zuma would stand up saying the same things. At the end of the speech, Trevor Manuel would say: ‘Today Mr. President you gave the best speech. If I were the chair, I would say there is no need for debate,’ and I would say (to myself) ‘How can Trevor say such a thing?’”
By: Paul Vecchiatto