Zimbabwe yesterday predictably reacted angrily to South Africa’s Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) party leader, Julius Malema’s call for President Robert Mugabe to step down, describing the former African National Congress youth leader as “an ignorant puny politician”.
By Staff Reporter
In a statement, Media, Information and Broadcasting Services minister Christopher Mushohwe said Malema’s statements were irritating, insulting and uncalled for.
“What made Malema’s statements irritatingly despicable, was an informing presumption that in spite of his threadbare prodigal political career, he visualised himself as important enough to comment and pass judgment on the leadership credentials and political career of so an iconic figure as President Robert Gabriel Mugabe,” he said in a statement laden with verbosity.
“His preposterous claim that his treacherous, pro-white, neo-colonial politics finds inspiration in the figure and politics of President Mugabe is a hard-to-suffer insult.”
The EFF leader, formerly a darling of Zanu PF, chided the party’s members for being cowards and failing to be honest with Mugabe that his time was up.
Malema said he was prepared for a strong response from the Zimbabwean ruling party and Mushohwe did not disappoint.
“This side of the Limpopo, Julius Malema shines as a loudmouthed Gucci revolutionary, who acquired the infamy of deserting and betraying politics of liberation, as espoused by the ANC,” Mushohwe said, adding no amount of “invoking the name of our leader and President will grant him even a patina of respectability”.
Incidentally, the term Gucci in the Zimbabwean context is often associated with First Lady Grace Mugabe, a nickname that arose from her reported penchant for shopping.
Mushohwe went on to describe Malema as political charlatan, “who seeks to make up for his inner political deficiencies by projecting himself as a trans-border, continental politician, who fancies himself big and cute enough to pass judgment on developments elsewhere on the continent”.
The Information minister was not quite done yet, describing Malema as an ignorant youth trying to “punch above his life-long weight”.
He said Malema’s EFF only survived on political patchwork with disguised, “resurgent apartheid political formations and, of course, childish histrionics in Parliament”.
Malema was bound to earn the wrath of Zanu PF and the Zimbabwean government after he challenged Mugabe’s continued stay in power, saying the veteran leader was a threat to Zimbabwe, Sadc and the African revolution project.