- Joined ANC at 9 yo
- President of ANCYL in 2008
- Forbes 10 Youngest Power Men in Africa 2011
- Founded Economic Freedom Fighters in July of 2013
- Supporter of Robert Mugabe
- Member of Parliament with twenty four other EFF members
Julius Malema was born on March 3, 1981, to a single mother in Transvaal province. He joined the ANC when he was nine years old. His primary task was taking down National Party posters outside police stations. At 13 he received military training including handling firearms. He learned how to make petrol bombs and assemble guns for the revolution. His grandmother, Sarah, raised him for the majority of his childhood. His mother died of an epileptic fit.
Malema had a son, Ratanang, in 2006 with girlfriend Maropeng Ramohlale. That relationship ended. He later married his high school sweetheart a woman named Mantwa Matlala in 2014, and the couple welcomed their first son Munzhedzi. Malema divorced Matlala in 2017. Matlala accused him of cheating and threatened to leak nude photos of Malema and his mistress.
In 2012 a man claimed to be Malema’s father. Samuel Manyapye claims he left Malema’s mother to work in a gold mine. Manyapaye is currently a scrap collector. He apologized for leaving the family. Malema did not believe him and said many men claim to be his father just to get government influence.
Malema held many leadership positions in the ANC youth league. At 14 he was ANCYL chairperson for his district. He also was a chairperson in the Congress of South African Students (COSAS). During his time in COSAS Malema said he would burn down a jail to keep Winnie Mandela from being jailed.
At a 2008 ANC rally, Malema said: “We are prepared to die for Zuma. We are prepared to take up arms and kill for Zuma”.  At the time Malema believed powerful forces attempted to remove Zuma from power. He also believes Thabo Mbeki seeking an unconstitutional third term could be detrimental to democracy in South Africa. Winnie Mandela resolved the issue resolved by forcing Malema to vow never to say the word kill in public again. The Democratic Alliance (DA) wanted Malema prosecuted.
ANC suspended Malema for various comments put the ANC at odds with various allies. The specific issues Malema caused controversy over were.
- Calling for regime change in Botswana
- Barging into a meeting with ANC officials
- Calling all white people criminals for taking African land
The ANC found Malema guilty of spreading division and disrepute in the party. The ANC also found Malema not guilty of inciting hatred and racism. He was suspended from the ANC for five years in 2011.
Founding of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF)
Julius Malema founded the Economic Freedom Fighters on July 10, 2013. Malema and twenty-four other EFF members won a Member of Parliament (MP) seat in Parliament. The party gained six percent of the vote. One of the most prominent features of the party is the red worker’s clothing. In Parliament, EFF members dress in red coveralls or red maid uniforms. They do this to remind people they represent the workers of RSA.
The focus of EFF is to nationalized strategic land without compensation. Because whites took the land through genocide, the current occupants do not have a moral claim on the land. Once the land is appropriated the profits from the sale of minerals and crops will be used to fund social programs. The EFF chiefly focuses on improving agriculture and education in RSA. The party is very popular with disenfranchised urban and rural youth in RSA.
Malema was mentored in leadership by Winnie Mandela whom he still maintains a close relationship. Malema claims that this relationship shaped his view on women in power. The EFF has several MPs that are women. Malema hopes more will join and be elected to office.
Malema often uses inflammatory language. One of the most prolific uses of inflammatory speech is singing the song “Kill the Boer”, an old ANC struggle song. The lyrics go: Kill the Boer/the farmer/Kill the Boer/ the farmer/ shoot to kill/ shoot to kill/ burrr ahhh/ burrr ahhh/ burr ahhh. Malema changes the word “kill” to “kiss” because he promised Winnie Mandela to never say the word kill in public again. The song is sung while participants do a stomp in cadence with the music. He has been quoted as saying “We are not calling for an armed takeover of white land…at least not now.”
Malema is known for living a very extravagant lifestyle. Malema owns a R 16,000,000($1.2 M) home and wears costly designer clothing. Many have wondered how he can afford this lifestyle. In 2011 City Press Newspaper claimed Malema set up a trust to launder money from various parties attempting to garner influence.
Specific accusations in the case were:
- Influencing government tenders (contracts) to go to companies close to him
- Influencing government to award tenders to companies he owned
- Influencing government to award tenders to companies he served as board member
- Falsifying information on application to receive tender
Many have said the ANC supported the investigation. Malema was being tried for divisive language at the time and would soon be on his way out. In 2015 the case was struck off the roll due to one of the co-accused not being able to stand trial due to a sickness. The state can recharge him at a later date.
Ultimately, the validity of the accusations has never been tried in court. Also, the investigation started at the time the ANC had him under disciplinary review. Julius Malema had to sell his mansion in Sandton and his farm in Limpopo due in part from the financial strain of fighting this case.
Marikana Mining Massacre
Malema first called for the nationalization of mines in 2010. His call for nationalization angered the other members of the tripartite alliance, The South African Communist Party (SACP) and the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU. Many say this added to his opposition from the ANC.
The Marikana massacre happened August 10, 2012, resulted in the death of 34 striking miners. The miners were striking for a pay increase from R4,000 ($500) to 12,500 Rand ($1,500) per month. The miners carried traditional tribal weapons during the protest. The carrying of traditional weapons is legal in South Africa even during a protest. The South African Security Force was brought in to ensure order. An altercation began. Some witnesses say the police started the altercation others said the protesters started the altercation.
Cyril Ramaphosa was an ANC and Union leader that had left politics to become a business consultant. Malema accuses Ramaphosa of selling political influence to companies. Ramaphosa was on the board of Lonmin, the mining company that owned the Marikana mine. E-mail evidence showed Ramaphosa advocated for the SA Security Force to come down to keep order. According to Malema, Ramaphosa used his influence to persuade the Security Force to use violence against the protesters.
Malema re-entered politics after the massacre to advocate for the striking miners. Specifically to:
- Lay criminal charges on Ramaphosa for conspiring to kill protesters
- Lay criminal charges on all directors of Lonmin for conspiring to kill protesters
- Lay criminal charges against various actors in government and Lonmin for their part in the massacre
- Force Lonmin to pay reparation to victims of Marikana massacre
- Report Lonmin to tax authorities for aggressive tax avoidance.
- Follow previous cases against police that killed mine workers.
In 2014, Julius Malema accused the ANC of killing protesters in Parliament. He was asked to retract the statement by the Premier (Leader of Government in a Province). Malema would not retract the statement and was kicked out of parliament. The other EFF members voluntarily left with him.
Jacob Zuma’s Home Improvement
Zuma received what was supposed to be security upgrades to his home in 2013. An investigation by the Public Protector showed that improvements such as a swimming pool, chicken run, cattle enclosure, visitor center, and amphitheater were added to the contract. The Public Protector ordered Zuma to pay back the money for the improvements out of pocket. Zuma will need to repay around R 6.6M ($500,000).
Malema called for an early election so the South African people could choose a better leader in 2014. Another election was not due until 2019. Malema also called for the impeachment of Zuma with fellow opposition leader Mmusi Maimane.
Malema and the EFF were thrown out of the 2015 State of the Nation Address (SONA) for interrupting Jacob Zuma’s speech by asking when he would pay back the money. Security guards forcibly removed the EFF from the building. A small scuffle ensued. After the EFF had been removed, Mmusi Maimane protested that the use of force was unconstitutional. Maimane and his Democratic Alliance walked out also. Zuma maintains that the security guards action was constitutional and needed to promote democracy.
After the 2016 SONA, Julius refused to participate in the debate. He referenced Zuma’s bad judgment regarding the Guptas, the home upgrades, and the sex scandal. Malema voluntarily left parliament.
Malema was kicked out of parliament in May of 2016. He expressed concern that Zuma should have to face some punishment in Parliament after the Constitutional Court ruling on the home upgrades. The EFF broke out in song in protest of Zuma being allowed to speak. The speaker would not change procedure, and Malema was kicked out. A scuffle broke out between security and Malema.
Malema insulted Zuma in their native language Zulu in September of 2016. Malema’s objection was that Zuma should not be allowed in the Parliament after a criminal conviction. The Premier threatened to shut Malema’s microphone off because he was disruptive. Malema voluntarily left. Numerous EFF members protested after Malema left Zuma’s admission in Parliament. The other EFF members also left the house.
Malema and the EFF were also kicked out of the 2017 SONA for bringing up the fact that Zuma’s conviction he could not speak at Parliament. Malema also objected to the presence of soldiers in the chamber and the security guards having zip ties as restraints. The constitution does not allow a person convicted of a felony to address parliament. Malema would not allow parliament continue until Zuma and two soldiers left. The constitution does not allow soldiers in Parliament. Zuma and the soldiers refused to leave. The head of parliament then asked Malema and the EFF to leave because they were obstructing proceedings. Malema and the EFF refused. The head of parliament then orders security guards to remove the EFF. A scuffle then ensued.
A group of brothers (Ajay, Atul, and Rajesh) that have the last name is Gupta came to South Africa to start various businesses in 1993. Their businesses include computing, media, manufacturing and mining firms.
The Gupta’s used Waterkloof in Force Base for a private wedding in 2013. The Guptas were allowed to land 270 guests from India at the Air Force Base.The Minister of Defense did not approve using the base in this manner. At this time it appears that a high-ranking State Department official, Bruce Koloane gave permission to use the airfield. Malema calls for the National Prosecuting Authority to charge the Gupta’s with treason for using the Air Force base.
The Gupta’s are under investigation for attempting to influence Zuma’s cabinet picks. The first and most covered cabinet position possibly influenced by the Gupta’s was the Finance Minister position. However, many other cabinet positions are under scrutiny due to various e-mail leaks.
Mcebisi Jonas says the Guptas offered the position of Finance Minister to him before his predecessor’s firing on October 23, 2015. The Guptas offered Jonas R 600,000 in cash that day and R 600,000,000 in installments over time. Jonas claims to have turned the offer down. Zuma gave no reason for firing then Minister Nhlanhla Nene. David van Rooyen who had little experience replaced Nene. Zuma fired Van Rooyen in a week. His replacement was Pravin Gordhan who served for two years. Zuma did not contact senior ANC members before making these decisions.
RSA’s Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan found billions of Rands in suspicious transactions involving the Gupta family. Malusi Gigaba replaced Gordhan after Gordhan’s investigation went public. Malusi Gigaba has been connected to the Guptas through his adviser. Malema and the EFF commended Gordhan for finding and exposing the malfeasance. The affidavit contained 72 transactions worth R 6.8 billion.
Malema coined the term “Zupta” to describe how connected the Gupta’s were to Jacob Zuma. According to Malema, Zuma sold out his country for personal gain. The Gupta’s recently arrived and feel they can run roughshod over the country. Malema calls for the deportation of the Guptas and will make good on this promise if elected as president in 2019. Malema has also opened a criminal case against the Guptas, the Gupta company directors, and Zuma’s son Duduzane.
In June of 2017 Malema opened a case against the Guptas, Zuma, and Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba for working to raise rail fair for personal gain and circumventing contract procedure when procurement trains. Malema accused a rail contractor of illegally purchasing trains in addition to price inflation. Malema has a letter in which Gigaba instructed a government entity, Transnet, to buy trains while circumventing the normal contracting process. Malema calls on companies that lost the contract to aid him in the lawsuit.
Fees Must Fall
The EFF advocates for free education up until a person obtains the first degree. Recently a group of protest colloquially known as #FeesMustFall began and the EFF joined many other groups in the protest. The goal of the protest is to force the government to make college free.
Bonginkosi Khanyile is a leader in the EFF Student Command. He was arrested on February 4, 2016, for various charges centered around disturbing the peace. He has arrested again on September 27, 2016, for similar accusations. The charges were convening or attending an illegal gathering, interference with police, and trespassing. Malema petitioned the court to release Khanyile of R20 bail. Khanyile spent five months in jail. Malema said this shows the EFF does not abandon its soldiers.
Video List on Youtube “SD Julius Malema”
- “One on One with Julius Malema” by V.Pillay from News 24 Archive
- “The Story of My Life” Interview with J. Malema on My Africa (Youtube Video)
- “Julius Sello Malema” http://www.sahistory.org.za
- “Malema defends lavish lifestyle” http://www.news24.com
- Julius Malema, champion of South Africa’s poor, flies business class to Mauritius wedding
By A. Laing http://www.telegraph.co.uk
- Things you may not know about Julius Malema http://www.sowetanlive.co.za/
- Julius Malema slams man who professes to be his father https://www.all4women.co.za
- Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema and wife Mantoa have welcomed their first child together. By J.Madibogo http://www.sowetanlive.co.za
- BREAKING : Julius Malema Divorces His Wife Of 3 Years,Mantwa Reveals EFF Leader’s True Colours ! By M. Ndaba http://imzansi.co.za
- Malema faces arrest by M. Mofokeng http://www.iol.co.za