Julius Malema and Floyd Shivambu at the EFF Africa Day celebrations at Jubilee Park, Sunnyside, Pretoria. Picture: Jacques Naude/African News Agency/ANA
Pretoria - EFF leader Julius Malema has chastised President Cyril Ramaphosa as a person who only took up the presidency of the country “to clinch business deals” with world leaders.

“Cyril Ramaphosa is a deal-maker,” he said

Malema made the remarks during his party’s celebration of Africa Day which attracted thousands of his supporters and migrants from various parts of Africa in Sunnyside, Pretoria, on Friday.

He also launched a scathing attack on Ramaphosa for his decision to contribute half of his salary to the Nelson Mandela Foundation as part of the International global icon’s celebrations.

“Why take money to where the money is?” Malema asked.

His supporters cheered as he said that Ramaphosa was never interested in the presidency of the country, saying his only interest “as a billionaire” was “to have access to world leaders to clinch deals with them”.

“Cyril Ramaphosa is worth billions. Why is he giving money to where money is?

“Why is he not sharing half of his billions with the poor people of the country?

“Why is he not giving it to the people of Diepsloot? Why is he not giving it to the parents of the children of Mamelodi who are struggling to rehabilitate their children from nyaope,” Malema said.

He dubbed Ramaphosa’s Thuma Mina plan, which forms part of the celebration of Nelson Mandela and Albertina Sisulu’s centenary - as a “useless plan”.

Malema said Ramaphosa should have instead used his wealth towards assisting those HIV patients receiving treatment. He also used the Afrika Day celebration to lodge a tirade against the Independent TV station eNCA for its alleged bias in favour of Ramaphosa. 

In his address, Malema was highly critical of the TV station’s 8pm slot As it Happens -The Ramaphosa Administration which airs Monday to Friday and is hosted by TV journalists Vuyo Mvoko and Cathy Mohlahlana.

According to Malema, in the TV programme Ramaphosa is depicted as “an angel and saviour” but said the primary motive of the TV station managers was to “to promote Ramaphosa”.

“Not even the Gupta TV did that. Despite knowing Jacob Zuma’s relationship with the Guptas, they never had his face in the background of their broadcast.

“Why would an Independent media house put a face of a politician on their programme? They want to impose Ramaphosa on us. We must reject the programme,” he said.

According to Malema, South Africa “is led by cowards” who were allegedly failing to improve the public health system and to fight crime”.

He also put the blame for the spiralling cash-in-transit heists squarely on Ramaphosa’s doorstep.

“We are poorer than before. Crime is committed by soldiers and police who are supposed to protect us. We’ve had more than 100 cash-in-transit heists in 2018. These criminals are committing these crimes because the government is asleep.

“How can you expect Police Minister Bheki Cele to do something about crime when the president is silent about crime and these criminals,” Malema said.

“No police officer will be killed during the EFF government,” he added.

Presidential spokesperson Khusela Diko was not available to react to Malema’s comments.

The EFF leader also vowed to change all colonial street names and change South Africa’s name to Azania.

“South Africa is not a direction,” he said. He would change its name when his party took over in 2019.

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