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IN QUOTES | From racism to Covid-19: 10 times Julius Malema spoke out in 2020

23 December 2020 - 07:00 By cebelihle bhengu
EFF leader Julius Malema has been vocal about a lot of issues this year.
EFF leader Julius Malema has been vocal about a lot of issues this year.

EFF leader Julius Malema did not hold back this year on speaking his mind on various issues, including gender-based violence, the government's response to Covid-19 and racism.

When SA went into lockdown in March to arrest the spread of Covid-19, Malema was vocal about the state of the South African health-care system and access to education during a pandemic.

Other issues to shake SA this year were allegations of racism and gender-based violence, which Malema spoke out on.

The murder of 21-year-old farm manager Brendin Horner in the small town of Senekal in the Free State and allegations of racism at Cape Town's Brackenfell High School also drew a response from the leader of the red berets.

Here are 10 quotes Malema gave us this year:

The EFF is for the people 

“The EFF wants to restore life back into the black bodies. That's why they shoot us with ease because there is no life in black bodies. They respect life in Europe. They don't use stun grenades and teargas in Europe. They don't use violence against protesters in Europe. Why? Because there is life in the body of white people in Europe, but when they come here, they use rubber bullets, stun grenades and teargas,” Malema said after EFF members clashed with police during a protest in Brackenfell.

EFF loves patriotic white South Africans 

“Everywhere we meet racists, we deal with them decisively, but where we meet patriotic white South Africans who love their country, who love their constitution and who want to share the land with their own people, they are more than welcome," Malema said amid a backlash for hiring white lawyers to represent him and MP Mbuyiseni Ndlozi in an assault case.

Accountability for rapists

“Rape and abuse of women and children should be crimes against the state. So much that even when the victim withdraws the case, the state must proceed with the case against the perpetrator. Anyone who suspects a case of rape should lay a complaint even if they are not a victim,” Malema said in a Women’s Day address.

Inequality in access to health care 

“When we warned the private health-care sector to either play a progressive role in fighting the coronavirus or face nationalisation, Ramaphosa giggled. Today our people are fighting each other for oxygen in public hospitals, and health-care workers are dying because of the lack of PPE,” Malema said of the government's response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Investigate living conditions of farmworkers

“All living conditions of the farmworkers, including their salaries and where they stay, must be looked into. People who live in worse conditions are found in the farms. They have no electricity, yet the boss has electricity, no toilets and no schools. We need to investigate the conditions of the farmworkers and come up with clear, binding recommendations,” he said shortly after the party protested in Senekal in the Free State.  

Alcohol is not the answer 

“The youth of today must learn from that of 1976 and not turn to alcohol when confronted with problems that require principled activism and innovative political solutions. The youth of today must be at the forefront of saving our people from destructive dependency on alcohol, which dulls the consciousness of the country and creates empty shells with no appetite to change their conditions,” Malema said in a virtual Youth Day rally address on June 16.

Social grants increases must be permanent 

“We fully welcome the increase of social grants and the introduction of the basic income grant for unemployed people. Our demand in this regard is simple, these increases must be made permanent. The old age grant must never be reduced and [instead] be increased to R2,800, the child support grant to R800 and the grant for the unemployed to R1,000 per month,” Malema said of the government's relief grants for those most affected by the economic fallout from the Covid-19 pandemic.

What farm murders?

“There is nothing in our law called farm murder. Murder is murder. It is criminality and should be attended to as such. A criminal must rot in jail once found guilty. We have no interest in people who go around killing innocent people, particularly civilians who are trying to make an honest living,” Malema said on the topic of farm murders.

Confronting racism 

“If standing up to a white man, makes me a thug, I'm a proud thug. If standing up to a white man makes me a fascist, I'm a proud fascist,” he said, after being criticised for his calls to march on Senekal in “defence” of the country's democracy and public property.

Pretenders voted ANC and not EFF

“Shame on all of you who didn’t go out to vote during the by-elections and those who took our T-shirts and went with our transport only to vote for the ANC,” Malema said after the November by-elections.