Policy contradictions in Julius Malema’s rants
The Herald Editorial: Vitriolic insults against communist leaders and anti-communist sentiment in general provided the rallying cry for the pro-Malema victors at the ANC Youth League’s Eastern Cape conference at the weekend.
In his remarks on Sunday, league president Julius Malema declared war on the SA Communist Party, saying the league would “beat the dog until the owner came out”.
This was after Malema’s allies trounced those believed to enjoy the support of communists in the ANC alliance.
Presumably, Malema was responding to statements by SACP general secretary Blade Nzimande, who last week expressed concern at factions within the league, which he said was divided. “The SACP has failed to take over the youth league,” Malema told cheering delegates.
“We will never surrender to Blade. He has never been a member and has no understanding of what the youth league is (about).
“Their people have been receiving serious lashings in the youth league conferences. As we said before, we will beat the dog (SACP) until the owner (Nzimande) comes out ...”
Malema’s comments were in line with those of newly elected Eastern Cape youth league chairman Ayanda Matiti who also criticised communist leaders. If it were up to him, Eastern Cape Health MEC Phumulo Masualle would be fired for under performance. Masualle is national treasurer of the SACP and chairman of the ANC in the Eastern Cape.
Malema and Matiti’s spirited attacks on communist leaders reveal a sad paucity of logic considering they are campaigning for the nationalisation of South Africa’s mines. A call for public ownership of private enterprises like mining operations has its roots in Marxist and communist theory. So does state intervention in private enterprise.
This ideological mismatch exposes Malema and his cohorts’ nationalisation war cry as being purely opportunistic and without substance. More dangerously, it reveals how Malema and his gang are hell-bent on the total annihilation of those who lose in elections – an eerie sign of anti-democratic behaviour.
This youth league battle was not based on a debate about competing ideologies or policies. It was not based on differing views on how best to serve the poor, unemployed and unemployable youth.
It was based on pure factionalism and personal attacks. It was about who gets to feed first from the power trough.