Pretoria - The African National Congress were the major losers in the 2014 national and provincial elections, Economic Freedom Fighters leader Julius Malema said on Saturday.
Briefing media at the Electoral Commission of SA's (IEC) national results centre in Pretoria, Malema said the ruling party was putting on a brave face publicly, while internally it was concerned.
“The ANC has reduced. If there is any reality, the ANC has lost... they have lost in Gauteng. Whatever tactics they used, they lost... Whatever shenanigans they used, that is part of the game,” Malema said.
“In the ANC language, that is a big problem. They are showing a brave face.”
He said that anyone who voted for the ANC was contributing to corruption, and degradation within the country.
“Anyone who voted for them (the ANC), they are contributing to corruption, they are contributing to the rot.”
President Jacob Zuma had missed an opportunity to get a two thirds majority for the ANC, as his presence at the top of the party has done more harm to the party than good.
“Zuma missed an opportunity...instead of uniting forces, he went to paralyse them... You remove hard workers for political expediency.
“The ANC will never recover from this mess. The only way the ANC will get two thirds will be to arrest Zuma.”
Malema said he had no regrets about leaving the ANC.
While others said life would be cold outside the ruling party, he had found it to be “warm”.
“How can you feel cold when you are surrounded by one million people?”
EFF was pleased with the election results, especially as it had only been in existence for eight months.
“Only in the Olympics they announce the top three,” Malema said, with the EFF having finished third on the national ballot with 6.35 percent of the vote, having received 1 169 259 votes.
“We are the winners and are taking something home...”
He said given Parliament's propensity to avoid issues relevant to the poor, the EFF would make sure “ordinary people” would serve among its caucus.
“We want ordinary people who come from the poorest of the poor to be leaders in this organisation (the EFF). We are sending ordinary people to Parliament,” Malema said.
“The material conditions on the ground (have) dictated we take such people to government... We don't want lazy people here who just (want) glory.”
In Parliament, Malema said the EFF would bring its own brand to the national legislature as mandated by those who voted for it, from dress code to policy, with the party's principles paramount in this regard.
“We are not going to bed with anyone who doesn't stand for what we stand for. We are going to put substantial issues on the table and debate them.
“They are no longer going to be sleeping in Parliament...We are going there, some of us, with overalls. We are not going to create the impression that we are better than others (by wearing suits). We want a Parliament that reflects South African society...Our people are still suffering.”
Malema congratulated all parties on the elections, and particularly thanked those who voted for the EFF, given his party did not have the resources other parties had.
“We have (been) voted by more people who want more money in social grants...mine workers, and those who want a R4500 minimum wage,” he said.
The party accepted the election results, as “no election was perfect” and called on people in Alexandra, in Gauteng, to do the same after 59 people had been arrested in connection with protests in the area.
“We accept defeat and life goes on. People in Alex, we call on you to accept defeat. This is not the end, this is the beginning...We are all winners. No one has lost here....We are not going to disappoint the people the same way Cope (the Congress of the People did) .”
This followed Cope losing a substantial amount of support, where they won only 0.67 percent after winning 7.42 percent in the 2009
elections, their first as a party.
“We have done very well. Indeed, it looks impossible until its done...” - Sapa