Durban - “Fighters, defend yourselves!” This was the clarion call by EFF leader Julius Malema to his party members and supporters ahead of their planned protest action on Monday, urging the red berets to respond with twice the intensity to those who mete out violence against them.
Malema, accompanied by the EFF senior leadership, was on Wednesday briefing the media on the state of readiness ahead of Monday’s national shutdown at the party’s Winnie Mandela House headquarters in Braamfontein, Johannesburg.
The march is aimed at pushing President Cyril Ramaphosa into resigning following his Phala Phala farm corruption scandal in which millions of dollars were stolen during a break in at the farm in Limpopo in February 2020.
Malema insisted that his party’s action would be peaceful, however, he urged his party’s members, supporters and South Africans who would be joining the march not to take any provocative action from opponents of the march lying down and instead respond in kind to anyone who uses violence against them.
“Anyone who comes with nonsense, do not tolerate that nonsense from anyone, it doesn’t matter who they are. We are not scared of them and we are not scared of Fidelity, I’ve never been scared of Fidelity,” Malema said.
The EFF leader’s hardline stance comes after former KwaZulu-Natal Hawks boss Johan Booysens, now working for private security firm Fidelity Security Services Group, reportedly wrote to National Police Commissioner General Fannie Masemola offering Fidelity’s security personnel to assist with maintaining law and order during the march.
The red berets’ leader did not mince his words when explaining that they would not be intimidated by anyone.
“The fighters have got a responsibility to isolate agents provocateurs and outside forces who want to hijack the march and give it a bad name. Anyone who threatens the rights of the fighters, and fellow fighters, including Fidelity, defend yourselves.
“We are not scared of Booysen, he is nobody, he is just another human being. He’s got no authority over violence, that he conducted himself the way he did in KZN doesn't give him a right. This is not KZN, this is South Africa. We are not scared of Fidelity, we are not scared of any private security,” Malema said.