EFF leader Julius Malema. Picture: SUPPLIED
EFF leader Julius Malema. Picture: SUPPLIED

EFF president Julius Malema dismissed ANC leaders as a group of rogues who belonged in jail and told his party faithful that the red flag would fly high at the Union Buildings after the May 8 vote.

He reiterated his claims that President Cyril Ramaphosa — who he described as a spent force — offered him and his deputy Floyd Shivambu cabinet positions when he ascended to the highest office in the land.

The firebrand leader also warned white people that their “dinner table” risked being destroyed if they continued denying black people rightful ownership of Africa’s largest and most industrialised economy.

PODCAST | All hail Kingmaker Malema!

Malema, mourning the loss of his grandmother Koko Sarah Malema, was delivering the keynote address at the EFF’s last  big rally before the election at Orlando Stadium in Soweto on Sunday.

He told the crowd at the packed 45,000-seat arena that women would be at the forefront of the EFF government, that social grants would be increased, and a truly free education system realised by his administration.

EFF head Julius Malema and other members of the EFF held its election rally in Orlando stadium in Soweto on May 5 2019.

Malema lashed out at the governing ANC for turning SA into what he described as a zombie state and claimed most of Gauteng’s townships as EFF support bases. He said the EFF had shaken the ANC in its traditional stronghold provinces of Gauteng, Limpopo, Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal (KZN), North West and Northern Cape.

Polls have predicted a 17% growth for the EFF in KZN, about which Malema remarked: “That which Natal is doing is unexpected.”

“They thought we are a Mickey Mouse organisation, now they realise we are a force to be reckoned with. You can’t talk about SA’s future without the EFF. We are the future of SA.

“Five years looks like this,” said Malema, scanning the packed stadium, “who would have imagined that today we are finishing five years.”

Malema said he was shocked to see elderly people at EFF events because in the past they did not attend rallies.

“Today they come to EFF events because they know EFF is the future of their children. The EFF gogos know that Mandela is no more, he is resting in Qunu peacefully. They know Mandela handed the baton to a younger generation and that younger generation is in the EFF.”

Malema said his party was not chasing white people into the sea, but was fighting for equality.

“We are fighting against white privilege and white arrogance. We are fighting to sit at the dinner table with white people.”

He stressed that it was no longer viable for whites to continue eating alone. “No one is going to eat in SA until all of us sit at one dinner table,” said Malema.

“In the past 25 years you have been eating alone. It’s enough. No one is going to exclude us here. We are not calling for the killing of whites, (but) it’s dangerous to continue sitting alone, the dinner table may be destroyed.”

On the contentious issue of land, Malema said no one brought land into the country and that those who disagreed with that sentiment should “get on the next flight”.

The beneficiaries of land needed to work it and debunk the narrative that blacks were lazy, said Malema, adding: “All the industries must be opened and must be owned by our people.”

Women, said Malema, would own more than 5% of the land under the EFF government because they were the majority in SA.

“Women are going to be in charge. Even here in EFF women are in charge. Women must lead us from the front,” he said. “They have always been better leaders. If you say you can’t be led by women, you are saying you can’t be led by Winnie Mandela.”

He urged supporters to vote for the EFF on Wednesday, warning that not casting a vote on the day would only serve the ANC. He said the townships of Gauteng would vote overwhelmingly for the EFF in order to restore the dignity of Africans.

“These people failed to restore dignity of African children. On 8th May it’s not voting day, it’s economic freedom day. We must go and get our economic freedom.”

As he neared the end of his address, Malema trained his sights on former president Jacob Zuma and his successor Ramaphosa, describing them as tsotsis who should be locked up in prison.

“That’s where they deserve to be. Ramaphosa is finished, he doesn’t deserve to be in the Union Buildings.”

Malema noted that both leaders were old and should either go to an old-age home or “straight to jail”.

“Send us,” he urged the crowd, “to go and represent you. Let’s stop the tsotsis who have not given you water, electricity and jobs for the past 25 years. We must bring that nonsense to an end on the 8th of May.”

mtenkanel@businesslive.co.za