The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) celebrated its 10th anniversary with an extravagant event at the packed 90,000-seater FNB stadium in Johannesburg. The party’s leader, Julius Malema, delivered a passionate speech, campaigning for votes in the upcoming national election. He emphasized that the EFF aimed to be the future government and was born from the blood, sweat, and tears of South Africans, stemming from the Marikana tragedy in 2012.
During his address, Malema revealed that he had been continuously targeted by law enforcement agencies, particularly the South African Revenue Service (Sars), dating back to his days as the ANC Youth League president. Sars accused him of failing to submit tax returns and wrongfully declaring his income for several years, as well as failing to register or submit tax returns for his family trust, Ratanang. Malema expressed resilience against intimidation and stated that his family supported him through these challenges.
Malema also criticized Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi’s Nas’iSpani initiative, which allegedly exploited desperate, unemployed youth by offering letters of appointment as a means to gain votes. He accused the ANC of corruption and called President Cyril Ramaphosa a criminal responsible for the Marikana killings, vowing that the EFF would hold him accountable and ensure he faced justice once they took over the government.
The event was attended by leaders of various South African political parties, including the UDM, Azanian People’s Organisation, African Transformation Movement, Build One SA, and the PAC, who delivered messages of support. The SA Federation of Trade Unions also expressed its support during the celebration.
Despite facing ongoing challenges and criticisms, the EFF demonstrated its commitment to becoming a significant force in South African politics and asserted its determination to bring about change when given the opportunity to govern.
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