LOOK: EFF's Julius Malema denies bribing King Dalindyebo with R1.8m Mercedes Benz
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Cape Town – EFF leader Julius Malema has denied bribing AbaThembu King Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo when his party handed him the R1.8 million Mercedes Benz as a gift.
Malema, who was addressing the king and other guests in the ceremony in the Eastern Cape on Saturday, said they have been with the king from the time he was in prison.
At some point the king went on a hunger strike after his imprisonment on a range of charges, but the EFF got him to eat again.
He said they were not in the business of bribing the king.
Malema had promised the king a Mercedes Benz, during his party’s campaign.
He said they have been respecting king Dalindyebo all along, and would not abandon him as most others had done when he was imprisoned.
Dalindyebo was sentenced to 12 years in jail for kidnapping, assault and arson, but was released after serving just four years in prison, when the president granted some prisoners early parole last year.
“We are not here to bribe the king, like the former national chair (Dali Mpofu) said, because we were with the king in prison. Why didn’t they say we were bribing him when we were with him in prison, when they had all abandoned him and they decided to imprison the king,” said Malema.
He said it was not correct to send Dalindyebo to jail. This was taboo, said Malema.
“We insisted that there should be a middle ground and the king must be released. We tried everything in our power and even bringing on board the best legal brains to make sure that the king is well looked after. When he engaged in a hunger strike we were the ones who convinced him to eat,” said Malema.
He said they were with the king when it was not fashionable to do so.
They continue to be with him today and the EFF will stick with him for a long time to come, said Malema.