WATCH | Attacks are inevitable if economy does not favour locals: Malema
The ongoing attacks on foreign nationals in the country are not xenophobia.
That's according to EFF leader Julius Malema, at a news conference on Thursday.
Malema said economic development should favour locals. If this was not the case, incidents such as the ongoing attacks were inevitable.
Malema said this preference for locals must also apply among South Africans. As an example, he said, Polokwane should prioritise Pedi-speaking people ahead of Nguni speakers.
He added that employers should only hire outsiders if the skills they had could not be found locally.
"It is not even about foreign nationals. Any economic development must benefit the locals first," said Malema.
"It is not xenophobia, our brothers have a right to work here but preference must always be given to locals. If not, it is a recipe for disaster. But the private sector in South Africa prefers foreign nationals so that we can fight among each other."
Malema also criticised the strengthening of the rand during the ongoing chaos in the country.
"How can the rand strengthen when people are killing each other, someone is enjoying somewhere," he said.
Malema also weighed in on calls for the return of the death penalty, saying it was a no-go area despite the frustration from people on the ground.
This, he said, was a populist call which should not be entertained.
According to Malema, the death sentence would only favour the privileged while many of the poor who could not afford legal fees would suffer the most.
"Anyone who says we must support a death penalty must submit evidence of where it has worked," he said. "We do not support the death penalty because the legal system in SA is very expensive, we need a system that is self-correcting.
"In a system that hates black people, our sisters and brothers are the ones who are going to be hanged. Our laws are there, we are failed by the police."
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