Axeing Malema was wrong: Motlanthe

JOHANNESBURG — South African Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe has for the first time publicly revealed that expelling then ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema from the governing party was a mistake.

Report by City Press


Even putting Malema through a disciplinary process was “fundamentally wrong”, he explains.

According to a new book, Kgalema Motlanthe: A Political Biography, expected on the shelves by next week, the ANC’s second-in-command wanted the party to find a “political solution” to Malema and the Youth League’s misdemeanours — something Malema also pleaded for.

The book, authored by Ebrahim Harvey, states Motlanthe believed it was wrong for the ANC’s disciplinary committee “to have inflicted the drastic sentence of expulsion on its own youth leader”. He adds that the league’s politics of “bitterness and hatred, and a determination to hurt” President Jacob Zuma were wrong, but also said, “discipline must not be used to vindictively get even and settle scores”.

Motlanthe made various attempts to set up meetings behind the scenes to cool tempers, but these were “in vain”, Harvey wrote. The Deputy President refrained from commenting publicly at the time because he felt “bound by the decisions of the structures of the ANC”.

In the book, Motlanthe admits that some wanted him to remain President instead of handing over the reins to Zuma after the 2009 elections, but he refused.

He at the time told leaders, particularly Zuma, to rein in Malema, but this didn’t happen.

Last week the league affirmed, yet again, that they wanted Motlanthe to succeed Zuma at the ANC’s December elective conference in Mangaung.

Malema has also repeatedly said if Zuma is voted out of power in Mangaung, he would reapply for his ANC membership and make a comeback.

Contacted for comment on the money-laundering charge levelled against Malema, Motlanthe’s spokesperson, Thabo Masebe, refused to speak. He said: “It is a matter for the National Prosecuting Authority and judiciary, and (Motlanthe) will respect the due process.”

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  1. Kgalema Motlanthe is a fool – he should have kept quiet, he has instead added more fuel to the fire. Julius Malema is a menace to any sitting President. Malema runs an unofficial opposition to the ANC. He is a loud mouth. The ANC should not have given prominence to political immature and inexperienced youngsters like Malema. Some ANC offficals have touted Malema as a “future leader” and this has gone to his head. If Motlanthe is going to succeed Zuma then he is going to be in Malema’s pocket or else he is going to face the same problems Zuma is facing now with Malema. Malema did the same to Mbeki. The only way out of this is to do away with the Youth League altogether. Why does a political party need a Youth League? Nowhere else in the world is a Youth League given such prominence as is happening in S Africa politics.

    1. Mnoneleli Mtshixa

      I think Sono himself is immatured to call Motlanthe a fool and immatured, plus the view that youth league is unnecessary in SA is just an individual misbelief coming from a polically challenged individual (I will respect that, and maybe give Sono some political lessons for free). My view on the atticle is that Malema might have been wrong but the decision to expell him was motivated by fear. However Mothlanthe should have publicised his views and opinions if he himself did not fear to devide the ANC and the country even further (which is a good thing that he did not. I think some or many ANC leaders and members of the public in SA can not stand criticism and in most instances tend to be defensive. A political solution was the answer and expalsion was the act of a bunch of cowerds.

    2. Phillip Phogole

      Stop insulting Motlanthe,Zuma was wrong to fire Malema for comparing him with thabo mbeki apple with apple

    3. Can’t you see that Sono is some purpet who bennefitted from the apartheid gorverment and he still wants to go back there. Its sono with you Sono, we are moving forward and Malema is coming back.

    4. u are a puppet sono, ke sono ka wena sure

  2. I agree with Sono, he could have just kept quite. People are always hypocritical when talking about such kind of issues. When malema was acting as if the ANC was his own, insulting, people, causing havoc many cried that something should be done to this unleashed dog. When action is finaly taken people start missing him again. No one is above an organisation, a lesson Malema can’t understand. I admire Motlanthe for being quite and away from the Media headlines and keeping many guessing.

  3. ANC made a huge mistake by firing its youth legue leader(Mr Malema),this man was and is still fighting for economic freedom,we need him back before we loose peoples lives…

  4. It sound vague when a stupid calls our leaders like that, u saying Malema is disrespectful and u fool you are too. this young man, Malema is talking sense. We do not need money but we need some ways to generate it. We need better wages and jobs.

  5. Its a pity that South Africa is falling to the drain due to inpolitical fighting within the party. People should be focused on economic growth for the betterment of the poorest South African. At the same time, engaging on un fruitfull conflicts.

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