Juju's dictatorship may implode EFF

Julius Malema at EFF headquarters in Braamfontein.
Julius Malema at EFF headquarters in Braamfontein.

Things are falling apart in the country's second-largest opposition party, Julius Malema's Economic Freedom Fighters.

The centre is no longer holding, and the radical commander-in-chief Malema is battling with allegations of imposing his preferred leaders on conference delegates.

The EFF is undergoing its biggest democratic test as provincial structures hold elective conferences.

Provincial leaders are involved in nasty fights which is threatening to tear apart the party and damage its prospects in the 2019 national polls.

What's going on here, why would leaders of such a young upcoming party suddenly decide to engage in open warfare against each other, especially with so much at stake?

The unseemly spectacle that unfolded at the provincial people's assembly gathering in Midvaal is deeply worrying, with leaders in the party alleging that the vehicle carrying Malema was the source of gunshots that followed the meeting.

It seems this may have been in response to Malema's vehicle being stoned after one faction had accused him of imposing his preferred candidate on the delegates.

The EFF should take lessons from the Congress of the People (Cope), about what infighting can do. When Cope launched, the party inspired with messages of hope and change. However, this did not last for long due to infighting which destroyed its support base.

Contests for power and position are always welcomed, however, what happened in Midvaal points to what could be a crisis within the EFF. Malema's security unit was allegedly called in and ended up beating up and shooting live rounds at EFF members.

The road to the 2019 national elections should be treated with caution or we will see things falling apart for the young lions of the EFF.

David Maila

Cosmo Creek

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