SA’s Malema tells backers to seize white-owned land
South African opposition firebrand Julius Malema told his followers yesterday to seize any piece of whiteowned land they wanted, defying a court trying him on charges of inciting violent property grabs.
Malema addressed cheering members of his ultra-left Economic Freedom Fighters party near the courtroom in Bloemfontein, after a judge adjourned the politically charged hearing.
“When we leave here, you will see any beautiful piece of land, you like it, occupy it, it belongs to you... It is the land that was taken from us by white people by force through genocide,” he said.
Malema has rallied an enthusiastic band of backers through calls for the nationalisation of mines and the curbing of whites’ economic power, building on frustration over the slow pace of economic progress for many blacks since the end of apartheid.
His three-year-old party controls 25 of South African’s 400 parliamentary seats. But there have been signs of growing support since he stepped up criticism of his former mentor President Jacob Zuma.