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26 July 2011 at 10:36 - Posted by Anonymous

Malema is SA’s own Robin Hood


In Julius Malemas absence, the ANC Youth League leadership presented a united front at a Luthuli House press conference yesterday. From left: spokesman Floyd Shivambu, treasurer-general Pule Mabe, secretary general Sindiso Magaqa and deputy president Ron

Julius Malema claims that his controversial trust fund helps the poor, and his organisation has accused the media of racism and a political conspiracy against its leader.

And if reports that the trust fund is financed through ill-gotten tender kickbacks are true, then the ANC Youth League leader is a self-styled Robin Hood.

The league called an impromptu press conference on Monday, the second in five days, in a bid to defend Malema.

City Press alleged that Malema used the trust fund, named The Ratanang Family Trust, as a slush fund to accept money from businessmen he had helped to secure provincial government tenders. Malema allegedly bought a R900 000 farm in cash in the name of the trust.

But Malema’s lieutenants claim that the allegations were peddled by a lying media funded “by the Broederbond” and “people living in a blue house”. No one knew what the blue house was, but some reporters suspected this was a veiled reference to the DA.

Journalists arrived early in order to secure a seat in the foyer of Luthuli House, the ANC headquarters in central Joburg.

It was lights, cameras, action: but Malema – the star of the last press conference – was nowhere to be found. When one reporter asked where the youth league president was, he was lambasted for trying to attack Malema.

The league’s secretary-general, Sindiso Magaqa, said he and the league’s deputy president, Ronald Lamola, and treasurer Pule Mabe were there in a show of support.

“He (Malema) remains the commander-in-chief of an economic liberation fighter organisation,” said Magaqa, adding that the “wild” accusations came from a third force that was trying to stop the league’s controversial nationalisation of the mines and land-redistribution policy proposals.

Magaqa demanded that the unnamed source who alleged Malema accepted kickbacks come forward and lay corruption charges. They also demanded proof that a R200 000 deposit had been made into the trust’s bank account.

Magaqa said the trust had assisted orphanages, students with bursaries, and bought wheelchairs for the Ikhwezi Lokusa School in the Eastern Cape and school shoes for children.

The league officials made no comment about where the money to support these needy causes was coming from.

Asked if the league had proof that the trust had paid for good deeds and helped the community, the league’s top executive avoided the question.

Last year, The Star revealed that despite Malema promising to provide 200 school shoes for children at Makanyu Primary School in Mphego, Limpopo, and offering Ikhwezi R500 000 for wheelchairs, the school never received the shoes from Malema, and Ikhwezi only received a deposit of R55 000.

League spokesman Floyd Shivambu said it was interesting that the only people asking questions were white journalists – even though that was not the case.

The media conspiracies continued unabated.

Lamola said the media were being funded by faceless people “who continue to suck the blood of African people”.

Magaqa said the media were being controlled by “imperial forces”.

“The person funding you lives in the blue house. You may accept bribes for writing nonsensical stories. The media are owned by right-winged white people,” said Magaqa.

After the various conspiracy theories and Shivambu’s race card came the culture card, or lessons in African tradition.

Mabe explained that Malema’s driving a luxury Range Rover worth R1.2 million owned by businessman Matome Hlabioa was nothing sinister, because it was simply African tradition to borrow from one another.

“I must give this lecture so they can understand,” Mabe said of the journalists.

“We must educate them. In African culture you go to a neighbour to borrow salt.”

Meanwhile the Afrikanerbond, the successor of the Broederbond, said it was very upset to be blamed by the league for the stories on Malema’s finances.

“To play the race card in an effort to hide possible self-enrichment through political connections will, unfortunately, not make the allegations go away,” said the Afrikanerbond’s Jan Bosman. - The Star

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