Courts falling victim as detractors use apartheid tactics to silence opposition – Malema

Courts falling victim as detractors use apartheid tactics to silence opposition – Malema

EFF Leader Julius Malema is seen at the North Gauteng High Court during the matter between Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane and Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan, 23 July 2019, Pretoria. Picture: Jacques Nelles

The EFF leader warns that courts could be falling into the trap of silencing freedom of expression.

“We’ve seen the hypocrisy under President Cyril Ramaphosa,” EFF leader Julius Malema said to media outside the Nasrec Expo Centre on Monday while outlining how the EFF’s detractors were now using courts to fight battles against the party.

At the expo centre to announce the party’s second National People’s Assembly, where its leaders will be elected at the end of year, Malema highlighted how the EFF’s detractors were now using courts and the law as a means to suppress opposition.

There was a danger there, Malema said, adding that detractors had changed the manner of doing battle with the party on the ground and were now using the courts.

“They are using the same apartheid tactics.

“Apartheid used the physical structures of prisons to lock those they disagreed with – they use money now. They take you to court and lock you up [using lawsuits].”

He said the courts were “willingly or unwilling” falling into the trap of silencing freedom of expression and the exercising of political rights, because people who had money “can imprison you by imposing a heavy lawsuit on you”.

He warned that most opposition survived on political expression as a means to “expose the shenanigans of government”.

“All we do is to expose the shenanigans of government so that we can have a transparent government as opposition.”

He cautioned courts to be wary of limiting freedom of expression and political rights.

Using former president Jacob Zuma as an example, Malema said: “If the judges were like they [are] now… Zuma would have been protected and would still be president.”

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