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Malema blames white people for xenophobic attacks

September 05 2019: EFF leader Julius Malema talks to journalists during a press conference at their offices in Braamfontein, Johannesburg.
September 05 2019: EFF leader Julius Malema talks to journalists during a press conference at their offices in Braamfontein, Johannesburg.
Image: Veli Nhlapo

EFF president Julius Malema came out guns blazing against the violent xenophobic protests that have seemingly pitted African countries against South Africa.

Speaking at a media briefing on Thursday, Malema said his party would not be part of the protests which he said are clearly criminal. He said he would not support such acts as they are likely going to lead to South Africans turning on each other.

“… when you are done with Nigerians, when you are done with Mozambicans and Zimbabweans and Zambians, you are going to go for Shangaans from Giyani, I have to stop you now before you come to me,” said Malema.

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He said allegations that foreigners were stealing jobs from locals were misinformed. He blamed whites for creating animosity among black people, which he said have led to the unrests.

“There is no one who takes a job from South Africans, no one. They [foreigners] are being offered jobs, they don’t take [them]. The owners of means of production are white people. When you say private sector, it’s a polite way of saying white people,” said Malema.

“There is no government that employs foreign nationals, it is the private sector, simply put it is white people who prefer foreign nationals over South Africans and after employing foreign nationals they come to you and say, ‘don’t you think these borders are being let loose? It has led to foreigners taking jobs and as a result South Africans don’t have jobs’, that’s what they say.”

He said white people employ foreign nationals at their restaurants, farms, retail and hospitality sectors. Malema said that this was a way of planting self-hate among black people.

“… and because we’re unemployed, and because we’ve got government with no solutions to crisis of poverty and widening gap between the rich and the poor, we begin to start believing like that,” he said. “So the private sector, the white monopoly capital, must take full responsibility for this mess we are faced with.”

He said job-creation must first prioritise people living in that specific area  before looking externally. He said this is one way of averting violence and attacks.  

South Africans, especially around Gauteng, have been on the rampage attacking foreign nationals and looting their shops. This has angered countries whose nationals have been on the receiving end.

Malema has cautioned EFF members against taking part in the xenophobic attacks, which he says are total madness.

“Anyone with an EFF T-shirt must play very far from that madness. We’re not part of madness, we’re part of the solutions to the madness confronting our people on the ground.”

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