EFF leader Julius Malema faces charges of contravening the Riotous Assemblies Act after calling for land invasions. File picture: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency/ANA

Bloemfontein - Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema is expected to appear in the Bloemfontein Magistrate's Court on Friday, where he is facing charges relating to his calls for illegal land occupation.

Malema faces charges of contravening the Riotous Assemblies Act after calling for land invasions.

In 2014, at the EFF elective conference in Bloemfontein, Malema told party members that they should occupy the land. 

When appearing in court in Bloemfontein on those charges in 2016, he again told supporters who had gathered outside the court to take any “beautiful piece of land” they saw because it was taken from blacks “by genocide”.

Read: Malema’s vision of a revolutionary path

Malema in KZN court for calls to occupy land

Malema’s legal team is disputing the constitutionality of the Riotous Assembly Act. The EFF has accused the State of using “apartheid era laws” to try to silence its critics.

In a separate case, Malema appeared in the Newcastle Magistrate’s Court in July, on common law charges of incitement to commit a crime.

The charge sheet indicates that he is accused of trespassing in contravention of “Section 1(1) Read as Section 2(1) of Trespass Act 6 of 1959 as amended by Criminal Law Amendment Act 59 of 1983”.

In June 2016, Malema told supporters in Newcastle to occupy land because it belonged to blacks - whites could not claim ownership of land.

He appeared in the Newcastle Magistrate’s Court under the Riotous Assemblies Act and after the postponement, Malema stepped outside the court and told his supporters to “occupy the land because they have failed to give you the land”.

“If it means going to prison for telling you to take the land, so be it. I am not scared of prison because of the land question, but I am scared of prison if I go to prison for corruption. I don’t want to go to prison for corruption, but I want to go to prison for the land,” he said at the time.

African News Agency/ANA