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South Africa: Malema is Out, What's Next?

South Africa's most controversial character and politician Julius Malema has been suspended from the ANC for five years. Julius Malema is the former president of the African National Congress Youth League.

Last year, Malema led students in singing an old anti-Apartheid struggle song called ‘Kill the Boer’ and a South African judge found him guilty of hate speech because of comments he made about a woman who accused President Jacob Zuma of rape.

In May 2010, Malema was forced into making an apology to the nation and attend anger management classes. He then changed the song ‘Kill the Boer’ to ‘Kiss the Boer‘.

Malema is regarded by his supporters as the genuine voice of the poor in South Africa particularly with his call for nationalisation of South African mines.

Fr Stephen's Blog writes about his suspension:

Former President of the ANC Youth League. Photo released under Creative Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0) by Gary van der Merwe.

Former President of the ANC Youth League. Photo released under Creative Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0) by Gary van der Merwe.

Julius Malema is to be removed as leader of the ANC Youth League (ANCYL) after being suspended from the organisation for five years.

Malema is barred from involving himself in any activities of the ANCYL and the ANC for the duration of his suspension, which came into immediate effect today after Derek Hanekom,the ANC’s national disciplinary committee (NDC) chairman, announced the findings of a disciplinary process against Malema and the league’s top brass in Joburg today.

Malema was not present at the announcement at Luthuli House for the announcement. He was reported to be in Limpopo writing an exam.

The committee found Malema guilty on two main charges. One related to a statement he made on July 31 – that the ANC was no longer dealing with issues affecting the interests of Africa.

….

Malema was also ordered to vacate his position as league president with immediate effect.

He has 14 days to appeal…

Hardspear's post on Malema [af] is a simple expression of fear for the future:

Julius Malema… Ek sidder om te dink watse kak gaan hy nou aanjaag…

I shiver to think what shit he's going to do next.

Looking at events leading up to this point, we have to take a look at the recent “Economic Freedom March” led by Malema. Leaboy's Domain gives us a fitting introduction to this by highlighting Zapiro's cartoon on the event in his post titled, “Zapiro has a dig at Malema's ‘Economic Freedom March”.

The biggest argument in the South African blogosphere about this march was the inherent hypocrisy of Julius Malema who highlights the plight of South Africa's poor while he lives in luxury. One Long Minute gives us his point of view in his post titled, “What are you walking for?”:

First the March for Economic Freedom, well that was lead by Julius Malema, when he wasn't too tired and taking a break in his chauffeur driven beamer [BMW car]. There is just so much irony in that I'm headed for sensory overload. Lazy bastard still letting the masses do all the work for him but taking all the limelight for himself.

Vuilblog takes a satirical approach against Malema's followers with a picture of Malema, which has the following text:

You don't have running water, you live in a shack, you ride in a taxi. I buy expensive cars, I buy expensive houses, I only drink Johnnie Walker. You still like me.
Thank you for being a $%^&ing idiot

Other posts discuss the image and character which Julius Malema portrays. Covering what Malema thinks of himself with a hint of sarcasm is 2OceansVibe:

In his recent address at Walter Sisulu University in Mthatha, Malema said it was the job of the youth to introduce radical ideas, but bemoaned the fact that these days, one is hauled before a disciplinary committee for “telling the truth”.

This from the man who was in the media again this morning for a using a racial slur against Indians. Poor Juju. He really just feels misunderstood and unsupported.

Bibliopolit compares Malema to Lady Gaga:

Of course, here in South Africa, we have the equivalent of Lady Gaga in Julius Malema! Just in the political scene. Should we call him Julius Gaga, or Lady Malema? If it were not for Malema’s outrageous statements and claims, he would not have had a fraction of the attention that he is getting currently. For Malema, if it isn’t going to be controversial, it is not worth saying anything about it, according to how Lady Malema thinks.

Malema thrives on attention, and in my opinion, he falls in the same category as Lady Gaga. Although he is physically an adult, he has not matured mentally or sociologically to becoming an adult, and continues to crave attention like a 10-year old girl. And, the only way he can get the attention he so desperately desires, he acts and says things that are controversial.

The Fire in My Eyes gets straight to the point:

Julius Malema has the makings of a dictator.
He encourages the black population of South Africa to procreate and seems to dream of a country where white people are erased.
The way he speaks makes on think of reverse Apartheid and he constantly speaks of white people as the enemy.
He has a huge youth following in South Africa even though he is facing allegations of corruption.
The bad press he has received seems to fuel the fire of his followers and he's become something of a ‘saviour’ figure for many.

The Property Mag summarises the current state of South African politics in light of recent events:

“The dismissal of two cabinet ministers, the firing of the police chief, the enquiry into the arms deal and the fact that whatever the outcome, Julius Malema has had to go on trial, have all sent out a positive message that South Africa will not be allowed to drift into a chaotic Third World state. These moves by the President along with the financial minister's new mini-budget, have very definitely restored confidence in a leadership which appeared to be losing control.

So we know where we are now, we still have yet to see what the future holds for Malema and South Africa.

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