Douglas Gibson |
10 August 2023
Douglas Gibson writes says the EFF leader will not become president of SA, he is just an empty man
I am sick of Julius Malema, “Ju-Ju” to his friends, and Commander-in-Chief of a pseudo-army called the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF).
The people who have not wearied of Julius, are his mini-me, Floyd Shivambu, and the 1,193,985 voters who supported him in 2021. Contrary to all the propaganda, the EFF vote declined from the 1,882,480 he polled in the 2019 general election.
Some people with stars in their eyes about the EFF, and there are some of those around, almost swooned at the TV and media coverage of the birthday bash at FNB Stadium. It reminded one of a combination of the Golden Buzzer on America’s Got Talent and a Mussolini extravaganza before and during the Second World war.
Most EFF supporters are young. Many may not even have heard of Mussolini, who invented Fascism, plunging Europe into the darkness of war, death and destruction on a huge scale. He provided the firm leadership and stability many Italians yearned for, but at the same time, his word and that of the Fascist state was law. Fascists typically aim to strengthen and focus on the dominant group and persecute minorities. Does all of this sound a little familiar?
The tragedy of the EFF is that Julius is not an idiot. He might be a sociopath or even a psychopath, the former being compulsive and aggressive without caring about the consequences and the latter being charming and manipulative, but he cannot and surely does not believe most of the ridiculous claptrap he feeds to young people, desperate for a future that holds some promise for them.
What a tragedy it was and is that people in the ANC were too busy looking after their own careers, often including looting precious resources and dealing ruthlessly with those who got in their way. His seniors did not attempt to mentor him and groom him for the future (as has been done so assiduously for many years in the Democratic Alliance).
Jacob Zuma predicted that Julius would be the president of South Africa but he seems not to have lifted a finger to see to it that if this happened, Julius would be properly equipped for the job. Zuma was, of course, looking for cheap support from young acolytes and busy growing rich by giving the South African state away to the Guptas and other friends.
But Julius will not become the president of South Africa. He has proved himself to be an empty man. Imagine letting your own vainglory take over to the extent that the huge FNB moment when he looked like a cross between Queen and Jesus Christ, he descended to the level of singing “Kill the Boer.” Instead of a message of hope, of unity, of inspiration for the future he used a banal and grossly dated “struggle song” that denies our Constitution, and denigrates, targets and belittles a whole section of our people.
Julius was born in 1981 and he was only 8 years old when President FW de Klerk announced the end of apartheid. He acted as a tea-boy for older members. It is this that makes him yearn to be the Commander-in-chief; the brave, uniformed, beret-wearing, soldier. In other words, everything he is not.
He will be dumped by the young people of South Africa (as he has been dumped by Mr Snuki Zikalala, president of the ANC Veterans League) and may have to find his future course as a seller of illegal cigarettes.
Douglas Gibson is a former opposition chief whip and a former ambassador to Thailand. His website is Douglasgibsonsouthafrica.com
This article first appeared in The Star newspaper.