South African opposition Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema says if South Africans give his party the mandate to rule, he will not hesitate to send former President Jacob Zuma to prison.
Speaking at a final campaign rally at Orlando Stadium in Soweto, Johannesburg on Sunday May 5, Malema claimed that President Cyril Ramaphosa and his predecessor, Zuma, were on top of his list of criminals that needed to be jailed. At the same time, he accused the South African Police Service (SAPS) of failing to arrest ANC politicians facing corruption allegations.
“I have a list of criminals. Zuma is number one on that list, followed by Ramaphosa. You left Ramaphosa over the Marikana massacre. Till today, you’re still letting him go over the massacre because he’s your friend,” Malema said, while addressing thousands of supporters.
Malema said Ramaphosa had to be arrested over the Marikana massacre in August 2012, where police killed 34 protesting Lonmin miners. Ramaphosa was a non-executive director at the mine at the time, and a judicial commission inquiry in 2015 exonerated him of any wrongdoing.
Malema said Ramaphosa didn’t deserve to be at the Union Buildings as the country’s first citizen.
“What type of police are you? You look at a criminal going around addressing stadiums. A criminal is sitting at the wrong place at the Union Buildings. He is not supposed to be at the Union Buildings, he’s supposed to be at Sun City prison, that’s where he deserves to be,” he said.
He also called on police to stop shooting at protesters during service delivery protests.
“When people are protesting don’t shoot them. They are not fightig, they want justice. There is a difference between demanding justice and fighting. When we march and barricade roads it is because the criminals in the offices are not delivering to us. If those criminals were delivering, we were not going to block roads and burn tyres,” Malema said.
South Africa goes to the polls on Wednesday, May 8.