Letter: Old habits will die hard for Juju
The same ego and immaturity that led to his expulsion from the ANC will lead to the EFF’s demise, say Walter Mothapo and Sam Koma.
Johannesburg - Analysts and journalists alike have praised the EFF’s performance in the elections. Some commentators went so far as to cite history in the making.
But there is something these commentators are either failing to realise or not telling us. Julius Malema’s victory is temporary and he must gear himself up for the demise, split or breakaway of the EFF as a result of his dictatorial tendencies, poor judgement and intemperance.
Everyone is aware of how he ascended to ANC Youth League presidency in 2008 – through disruption, undemocratic process and mudslinging.
Surely, by the 2019 national elections, he will be the only one representing the EFF in Parliament. Then his resilience will be tested.
Infighting, squabbles and disunity will creep in after this victory. These problems will require leadership maturity to solve and Malema is far from mature if his conduct at the EFF press conference is anything to go by.
That he intends to set up a youth wing is laughable – he himself is just 33. Malema, the man who used the Limpopo government as his fiefdom to the extent of bankruptcy, has never been in public office, let alone worked for an employer. His inexperience coupled with his amateurish behaviour will collapse the EFF or split it.
He has already demonstrated it’s a one-man show in the mould of the UDM, IFP, Cope, APC and AgangSA.
In his leadership book, collective leadership does not exist.
Look at the way he answered the questions by himself – bar the terse input of Dali Mpofu at the election centre on Saturday.
The best the others in the panel could do was nod, throw in a sound bite, remind him of questions and take notes for him.
His characteristic style of mocking his opponents saw him not sparing Nkeke Kekana of the ANC a tirade by saying he is usually forward but during the ANC Gauteng press conference, he was timid.
And he ridiculed the eNCA journalists. He went on with his usual verbosity saying some parliamentarians hide their stupidity by dressing in suits. He sounded unreformed – the same guy who was kicked out of the ANC for disrespect and ill manners.
He further demonstrated his undying ego when he asserted that the ANC kicked hard workers out for political expediency which smacks of a man who thinks he is God’s gift to politics.
He forgets his conduct while president of the ANCYL cost the organisation votes in the local government elections.
EFF members’ withdrawal from the parliamentary list is the tip of the iceberg in expected divisions.
And it’s not “because of studies and desire to serve the party outside parliament” as Malema would have us believe. It’s a sign of discontent.
Observing the seeds of a potential fall-out, Malema is in a quandary on whether to commit to parliamentary politics by assuming the role of an MP or crack the whip as full-time party president.
The same ego and immaturity that led to his expulsion from the ANC will lead to the demise of his own party.
Taking on a tried, tested, experienced and well-oiled organisational machine such as the ANC is not child’s play. You may win the battle, but not the war.
The EFF’s excitement about its performance will likely be followed by a steady march to oblivion.
Walter Mothapo, Sam Koma
* The views expressed here are not necessarily those of Independent Newspapers.