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Julius Malema has been denied an official slot to address ANC centenary celebrations this weekend – but the ANC Youth League has arranged a number of mini-rallies for him to speak to supporters.
ANC spokesman Keith Khoza confirmed yesterday that Malema would not be featuring on the formal programme.
League spokesman Floyd Shivambu said the three mini-rallies had been convened by the league to mark “the massive contribution of youth and the youth league in the growth and development of the ANC in its 100 years of existence”.
“President Julius Malema will make reflections on the important role of youth in the ANC throughout its history, and contextualise the current struggles of the ANC Youth League within that context.”
Malema is awaiting the outcome of his appeal against his five-year suspension from the ANC for sowing division and bringing the party into disrepute.
Malema has used public platforms to push his political agenda and to ridicule President Jacob Zuma.
Khoza reminded the youth leader that his disciplinary process was still under way, in the hope that it would “assist to restrain” unruly and embarrassing behaviour.
“This weekend is an ANC issue and we expect (Malema) to work together for the success and unity of the ANC,” said Khoza.
“The (disciplinary process) is ongoing and we believe it should assist to restrain the league and encourage them to engage constructively.”
Khoza said the ANC women’s and youth leagues and the party’s allies, Cosatu and the SACP, would run their own programmes to draw crowds to the main event, the rally on Sunday where Zuma will deliver an abridged version of the centennial January 8 statement.
But with tensions rife among ANC factions, it remains to be seen if Malema will heed the words of the mother body and behave.
With the local and international spotlight on the ANC this weekend, party leaders would not want public divisions to tarnish the moment.
ANC national executive committee members have been in the Free State since Tuesday rallying people to attend the celebrations.
Zuma, his deputy Kgalema Motlanthe and party secretary-general Gwede Mantashe will be doing walkabouts as far afield as Bethlehem, QwaQwa and Harrismith today and tomorrow, when guests are due to begin arriving.
A night vigil will be held at the Waaihoek Wesleyan Church, the founding place of the ANC tomorrow night, culminating in a cleansing and restoration ceremony early on Saturday morning.
Dignitaries – among them about 46 heads of state – will arrive on Saturday.
These include Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan, President Ian Khama of Botswana and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
Although invited, US President Barack Obama will not attend, but the Rev Jesse Jackson will be among 24 “eminent persons” there.
Representatives of 80 fraternal parties, including the MPLA, Swapo, Frelimo, the Norwegian Labour Party, Communist Party of Cuba, the German Social Democratic Party and the National Congress of India have confirmed they will be present, as well as 50 representatives from anti-apartheid movements from all over the world and family members of prominent individuals such as the late Father Trevor Huddleston.
Opposition party leaders have also been invited. ACDP leader the Rev Kenneth Meshoe has declined.
Among traditional leaders, royalty and prominent guests attending will be King Goodwill Zwelithini, Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu and leaders of faith-based organisations.
They will be among the 1 500 guests at the lavish gala dinner at Vista University on Saturday night.
It’s likely that former president Thabo Mbeki will make an address. The ANC has confirmed that Mbeki will have a role to play but won’t divulge the details.
At the stroke of midnight on Saturday, Zuma will light the centenary torch that will travel from province to province over the next 12 months
@Melisa Smith: I can't agree more with you Melisa. This has become a habit of the South African media to manufacture stories so their newspapers will sell. Profit-making, rather than the need to inform, is what is driving these vindictive and misleading journalists.
So is the real reason for Zuma & Malema not sharing the stage together teh fact that the stage is too big for there egoes?& all the other speculated reasons just fodder for the media?
Is the president emulating Mbeki who used to remove his gold tooth before letting the poor folk with no teeth see him? What a farce this whole thing is! What is there to celebrate? We have a corrupt government and it wont get any better. As for worshipping the ancestors. Some one has the cheek to say, well, we worship Jesus and he is dead. Yoou are talking of the son of God here. A man without sin or blemish, who died for our sins. Can anyones ancestors compare? The ancestors are sometimes downright scary and something to be afraid of. Calling up evil spirits like this will bring catastrophe. Keep away all you Christians. Rev Meshoe is spot on. He is a true Christian who wont deal in black magic and evil ancestors spirits.
Melissa Smith, wrote
@Michael Smith, the headline you suggest is still incorrect and misleading unfortunately. Even if you says "Zuma will not be sharing the stage with Malema" it is wrong because looking at the facts, and reading the quotes attributed to Keith Khoza and Baleka Mbete on other news platforms, nowhere does it say that Malema will not be allowed on the stage. To repeat a point i made earlier, the ANC said NO ONE will be making a speech besides Zuma. The ANCYL, ANCWL, Cosatu, SACP and other affiliates will have their speeches in a booklet. My point is that using "not sharing a stage" whether u put Zuma or Malema before in that statement is misleading and wrong. Looking at the facts, nowhere does the ANC say this so what is the basis for this headline in the first place if not to have a Malema jab by IOL?
I wonder how long it will take before the populace will see how the ANC has been hi-jacked by tenderpreneurs and other crooks and how it has ditched it's noble principles for greed and theft.
Michael Smith, wrote
@Melissa Smith - the headline is misleading and seems sensationalist (and could therefore be misconstrued), but not incorrect. I would've preferred 'Zuma will not be sharing a stage with Malema' as it is more proper. But judging by all the spelling errors in the online edition of The Star I'm not surprised that their overall standard is this low. Online Editor please! Sort the spelling errors out. It's embarrassing!!
parties and parties spending our tax monies. but service deliveries the walk lyk chamelions
james brady, wrote
Wow what a gathering it would be. I hope their security arrangements are good, this gathering of the worlds greatest dictators and despots, tenderpreneurs and tyrants would be a great target for anyone who wished to rid the world of these undesirables in one easy move. I sure hope they check the food and water for possible poisoning, the halls and meeting places for bombs etc. We would hate for anything to happen, wouldnt we, what a terrible black mark on SA if anything does happen. Then again everyone loves these morons so of course nobody woul think of doing anything, or would they ?? The question is the answer
You cannot expect us to believe that all these events are being paid for by the ANC .. I am willing to bet any amount that they are being paid for with the Taxpayer's money .. THis is wrong !!! I would rather the money was spect on building houses rather than parties for the ANC royalty and people like Mugabe
Ms. Michelle Pietersen, in your article you refered to Vista university, there is no univresity with that name in SA currently, secondly it used to be in SOWETO, which was in Transvaal province, not in OFS province. Maybe you meant Free State University which is in the Free State province.
The indespensable President Cde Jacob Gedlayihlekisa Zuma...
Melissa Smith, wrote
Its always those who are cowards and don't want to declare their own names who express opinions such as "anonymous" @ 12:08. Still no comment from Ms Pietersen i see. We are waiting for you to justify this non story you have created..
Whatever you say, whatever you do, Zuma will remain your president and the ANC remains your government. And the good people of South Africa will keep the ANC in power. So, accept the things you cannot change!
Malema or no Malema sharing the stage,my concern is the the tax payers money spend on parties.....while there is no job stability in the country.
The ANC has lost its direction since it was invaded by the "tenderpreneurs." The politics of Steve Biko has become more relevant today than he was before... Poor man, you are on your own!
Has Malema not been expelled from the ANC?
naked eyes, wrote
Now these two thugs (Juliaas and The Zooo wish to prove the proverb incorrect Birds of a feather flock together. I mean without being flamboyant they are both rogues and cheap ones too.
The Week-End of the Wallies beckons, all the corrupt thieves together in one place. Wow what an incrediable collection. Outside of the borders nobody cares, so just get on with it. The true historical ANC movement of Good People is Shamed with these meaningless persons.
Spot on Melissa Smith,why single out Malema.This is one of media obsession with Malema.I wonder what Michelle Pietersen is trying to create.