Monday saw the vice president of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), Floyd Shivambu, reiterate his party’s support for people without land to establish settlements. Shivambu’s comments were made in the wake of party leader Julius Malema’s appearance in the Bloemfontein Magistrate’s Court. Malema’s latest controversy involves two violations of the Riotous Assemblies Act.
“All the struggles of the landless people must be supported actively by the EFF,” the party rallied. “There are people who have proper houses because they identified land and occupied it.”
Prosecutors claim the EFF leader knowingly encouraged the supporters of his party, as well as others, to go out and commit criminal activities. More specifically, Malema faces charges for commanding landless masses to trespass onto self-deemed unoccupied land and occupy it illegally.
“We reaffirm the conference resolution that were are going to support land occupation,” Shivambu said, speaking outside the court.
Shivambu voiced his thoughts on the grounds on which the prosecution chose to charge Malema for sentiments shared two years ago. The VP highlights the use of an apartheid-era act.
“Then they take the 1956 act,” Shivambu asserted. “It was an act that was going to deal with the riot of black people. That law which the commander-in-chief is charged with is about protecting Europeans against non-Europeans.”
The EFF’s defense opposed the Riotous Assemblies Act’s constitutionality in court and Shivambu is confident about his party’s ability to beat the prosecution.
“We assure you we are going to emerge victorious,” Malema claimed. “We are going to annul that Riotous Assemblies Act. We are going to reverse all apartheid legislation that exists.”
The vice president of the EFF pointed out that there are numerous laws which were set in place during apartheid that are still active today. Many of them still refer to black South Africans as non-Europeans or natives. Shivambu promised that the EFF will not be stopped by pre-liberation legislation.
“One thing for sure is that our programme is not going to be stopped by Apartheid laws. That is the reason why the EFF was formed to take forward the struggle that was not completed by liberation movement. We are going to reclaim the land in our lifetime.”