EFF leader Julius Malema. File picture: Thobile Mathonsi/African News Agency (ANA).

Johannesburg - EFF leader Julius Malema has refuted claims that he was blocking the creating of the party’s lower structures and leagues in order to maintain his control of the party.

Malema was addressing the media at the Nasrec Expo Centre, where the party will hold its second elective national conference between the 13 and 16 December.

Malema said he would argue at the conference that there was no need for new structures in the party, despite the proposals that were being made by some with the party’s rank and file.

“There is absolutely no need. If anything, we should be talking about reducing structures. I don’t see anything wrong that these structures of the EFF have done in the past five years,”Malema said.

He said the introduction of other lower structures in the party, including sub-regions, would create unnecessary bureaucracy and compromise the nature of the EFF as a unitary organisation.

“The EFF is one. There is no EFF of Gauteng or of Limpopo, but this regionalist mentality and tribalistic mentality of wanting to create a lot of structures is myopic and not political and not consistent with what the EFF seeks to achieve,” he said.

Malema has been accused of opposing establishment of structures and giving them constitutional powers because of wanting to prolong his grip of the party, which he dismissed.

He however remarked that the creation of lower structures within the party created a wrong impression that they had some powers to oppose decision of the party’s national leadership under him.

 “There is one EFF and it is being commanded from a central point. I make that point all the time so that those who joined without reading…let is repeat it more often so that they can hear that there is only one centre, the central command team (CCT). The rest are helping,” he said.

He said the party was also not prioritising the creation of leagues, as it was still at the formative stage.

He said even the party’s student wing, the EFF Student Command (EFFSC), was wholly dependent on the mother body because it was created prematurely due to pressure from within.

Malema said the EFFSC was losing elections if the EFF national leadership were not present at campuses to campaign for the student body.

“For them to win, we have to be there. Why, because there is no organisational history, tradition and culture because we are a new organisation. They have got nothing to learn from. Instead of us being patient and not suffer from political excitement, we got ourselves into trouble. Now we have a student command which can’t do anything,”Malema said.

Malema said the EFFSC was so toothless that it had only between 10% and 15% of branches in the total of campuses of tertiary institutions in the country.

“Why, the mother body must go and launch those branches,” he said.

Political Bureau