League in disarray
DESPITE his suspension and subsequent expulsion from the ANC, it appears that Julius Malema's ghost still looms large in the affairs of the ANCYL.
This was evident yesterday as a war over the control of the ANCYL in Limpopo raged. Two parallel youth league conferences were convened at separate venues.
Later on, close to 2000 ANCYL members from the conference and surrounding areas in Polokwane were bussed to Malema's house in Flora Park where he warmly welcomed them.
The conference had to adjourn for delegates to go and meet their expelled leader who was also recently banned from attending or addressing any ANC or ANCYL gathering. This after labelling President Jacob Zuma a dictator.
Malema told the crowd that he was not angry but was punished for what he believed. He again took a swipe at Zuma without mentioning him, saying: "I will not change my mind about them and their leadership style. I am not intimidated, neither am I scared. If I am not wanted I will never impose myself".
Malema told his supporters to feel free to come to his house for political advise at anytime. He boasted that he was banned for five years from politics at high school but still chosen as president for the student representative council.
The delegates found Malema with ANC leaders including Mopani chairperson Joshua Matlou, ANC provincial secretary Soviet Lekganyane and other PEC members. Jovial delegates sang "Uphi uJuju, uphi uJuju [Where is Julius, where is Julius] while waiting for him to address them.
Speaking to the Sunday World on the sidelines, ANCYL provincial secretary Jacob Lebogo, said: "If Matome cannot go to the mountain, then the mountain must go to Matome."
While the legitimate conference was graced by the presence of league secretary-general Sindiso Magaqa, the parallel conference was attended by North West league secretary and NEC member Wesley Khang. Limpopo Premier Cassel Mathale, who took to the podium alongside Magaqa, was warmly received by delegates. They sang in praise of Malema, calling on Mathale to lead them into the future.
Malema's ally and long-time friend Jacob Lebogo is fighting bitterly to retain his position as secretary while the other group, led by Malema's friend-turned- enemy Boy Mamabolo, are adamant that Lebogo must go.
The legitimate conference seems to have received Malema's blessing.
Malema, who's fighting for his expulsion to be overturned by the ANC and may know his fate before the end of the week, could not attend the conference due to his suspension. The legitimate conference, which was held at the Oasis Lodge outside Polokwane, was yesterday expected to elect the new leadership.
The league has been in disarray since Malema's expulsion.
"Where is Juju. We are not complete without Majuju," sang the delegates as Mathale and Magaqa entered the conference during the opening session on Friday night.
But Mamabolo and his crew were adamant that the conference held by Malema's allies was illegitimate.
"We are protected by the constitution of the ANCYL, which stipulates that members of the youth league shall convene by annual provincial congress and not conference to elect the provincial executive committee. The constitution does not say the PEC shall convene a conference but its members shall convene a congress."