READER LETTER | EFF making its mark in SA politics 10 years in the game

EFF leader Julius Malema.
EFF leader Julius Malema.
Image: Denvor de Wee

Eleven years ago, or so the ANC expelled Julius Sello Malema from the party. When the governing party fired Malema, his political obituary was written. Or so it seemed. As they say, its cold outside the ANC. 

However, a few years later, Malema rose like a Phoenix and started a new chapter of his political life – Juju established a new political party and named it the Economic Freedom Fighters, popularly known as EFF. 

Some of the ANCYL members, including Floyd Shivambu (his henchman), joined him in his new political party. Since inception, Shivambu has been – and still is – the deputy president of the Red Berets. This year, the EFF is celebrating its 10th year of existence.

The pertinent question is: do the Red Berets have something to celebrate in the decade of their existence? There is no easy answer. The EFF is currently the third most powerful political party in the country. Thats quite an achievement, given the short period of its existence. It has bypassed old political parties (such as the IFP) that have been there for long.

Parliament has become a dumping place for old ANC MPs. Others even call this important institution a retirement village. During parliamentary proceedings, these oldies sleep and snore. However, the Red Berets have turned the boring parliament into a vibrant institution. Those MPs who used to sleep there do no longer do so. And those who were no longer watching parliament on television now do.

Thanks to the EFF. On the other hand, Malema and his gang claim to represent the poor but live a high life. They drive flashy cars and wear designer clothing. Wearing red overalls in parliament is just a disguise to fool the public and poor masses. 

The other point to note is that the EFF leader is a flip flopper of note. Today, Malema says this and tomorrow echoes the exact opposite of what he said. And he and his followers do not seem to see anything wrong with that. In conclusion, the Red Berets are making their mark in our politics.

They are also a necessary irritant and have shaken the countrys politics to the core in the shortest period of its existence. Happy 10th, EFF. 

Thabile Mange, Mogale City

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