THE ANC has rejected calls by its youth league president Julius Malema that the goverment nationalise mines.
"It is not ANC policy to nationalise mines but the party does provide for people to question if they need to do so," spokesperson Jessie Duarte said.
On Wednesday, at the launch of the youth league's political school in Krugersdorp, West Rand, Malema said: "At the moment, when the imperialist forces are accepting the failures of capitalism, we should ask whether the time has not arrived for the government to make sure that the state owns the mines and other means of production as called for in the Freedom Charter."
Duarte said: "He didn't say he is going to nationalise. He thinks in the current climate it might be an idea to discuss the idea."
According to a report in Sowetan yesterday, Malema said President Jacob Zuma should fast-track the implementation of the Freedom Charter, which states that "the mineral wealth beneath the soil, monopoly industry and banks should be transferred to the ownership of the people as a whole".
According to the article, Malema also said he understood that not all South Africans would welcome the implementation of some of the charter's aspirations.
Duarte said Malema was only posing a question.
"It doesn't mean that the question will alter ANC economic policy," Duarte said.
"The wonderful thing about the country, unlike the media, is that we have freedom of speech." - Sapa