Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema was confronted at a press conference in Braamfontein on his recent defence of the party’s secretary general, Godrich Gardee, after a video emerged showing him involved in a fist-fight at the party’s headquarters last year.
At a June 16 lecture at the University of Fort Hare, Malema defended Gardee, saying he was “performing his revolutionary duty” and that he would have done worse himself.
“In terms of the video, I reiterate, I would have done worse. Those who have served with me know that I do not take any nonsense,” he responded on Tuesday afternoon when questioned at the presser.
“Any one who comes here who wants to threaten the peace of this nerve centre of the revolution is not welcomed. Our constitution says we will use any means necessary to protect the revolution.
“For the revolution we do anything. If you are a member and you do not like it, go join ACDP.
“Our members know that what the [secretary general] did is consistent with what the leadership of the EFF would have required when the headquarters are put under threat,” Malema said.
He then justified his party’s use of violence under certain circumstances.
“We must define the EFF’s morality and not the white man’s imposed morality on what the revolution should be,” he began.
“Where there is a need to use violence, to stop violence; we will do it. We never start violence, we are always provoked,” he continued.
In June, CCTV footage of the fist fight was widely circulated. The video footage turned out to be from July 11, 2018.
Watch the video below:
News24 reports that the individual that Gardee is seen fighting with is a former EFF member and that some have linked the scuffle to divisions within the party’s students command.
It was reported that Gardee defended his actions by saying that Abednego “Msholozi” Mathole was being provocative because he had been declared persona non-grata at the party’s premises.
Gardee reportedly said that people would reach their own conclusions because the video footage did not have audio and so they would not know what had transpired.
The EFF SG reportedly did not want to give clarity on the issue and was quoted as saying “silence is golden”.
(Compiled by Daniel Friedman. Background reporting, Makhosandile Zulu)