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Johannesburg - The Freedom Front Plus has petitioned the Independent Electoral Commission to stop Julius Malema’s political party from participating in the country’s 2014 national elections.
The FF+ has lodged a “strongly worded” objection letter with the IEC to the registration of Malema’s political party, the Economic Freedom Fighters.
According to Pieter Groenewald, the FF+’s chairman, the commission has been requested to decline the application on constitutional grounds, citing that Malema’s past conviction for hate speech and his party’s policy of nationalisation clashed with the letter and spirit of the country’s constitution.
“The EFF propagates the nationalisation of land, mines, banks and other assets without compensation and in particular on a racial basis. It is unconstitutional,” Groenewald said in a statement on Tuesday.
Malema was convicted of hate speech in March 2010 and again in September 2011 after singing the controversial song Dubul’ iBhunu (Shoot the Boer).
Groenewald said that with the singing of the song, Malema had created a racial polarisation and incited emotions against a specific race and ethnic group, which was unconstitutional.
“To date, Malema, as the leader of EFF, has not shown any remorse. The FF+ believes that he will continue with his unconstitutional actions and that he will abuse his party as a vehicle for similar discriminating actions and policy directions,” he added.
He stated that the word “fighters” was not suitable for a democratic system, where “political parties compete in elections in an orderly and democratic fashion”.
When contacted for comment on FF+’s objection to the IEC, Malema said: “I think that should be left to the process. It’s part of the democratic process for people to oppose based on their argument. We knew when we started that there’d be some objections. Let’s just let the IEC do their work and decide.”