ANC Youth Leader with Extravagant Lifestyle Pleads Poverty

Bill Corcoran, The Irish Times, July 22, 2011

The Youth League leader of the African National Congress has refused to answer journalists’ questions about how he funds his extravagant lifestyle, saying his finances were none of their business and that he is in fact a poor man.

The controversial firebrand Julius Malema, who in the past has said he earns about €2,000 a month from the ruling party as leader of their youth wing, hit the headlines in recent days when it was reported he was building a house worth over €1.6 million in Sandton, one of the country’s richest suburbs.

Since his rise to power in the Youth League in 2008, Malema (30) has continuously lambasted rich white South Africans who, he claims, hold most of the wealth in the country. He has also heralded himself as a champion of the poor.

As part of his plans to redistribute wealth, Malema has been calling on the ANC to nationalise the mines and introduce land expropriation without compensation.

The furore over his new house has prompted a number of opposition parties to ask the South African Revenue Services to investigate how he could afford his luxury home and cars and if he was paying tax.

At a press conference he called in Johannesburg on Wednesday, Malema denied building an expensive house and owning a Mercedes Benz C63, insisting instead he was poor.

When asked to explain how he could be poor when he had such possessions, he replied: “Because my definition of rich is those who own the means of production, I do not own . . . ”

He added: “That house you always make noise about in Sandton is owned by Absa [bank]”.

When pressed further about his extravagant lifestyle, he refused to elaborate, saying his personal affairs, salary and business interests were “none of anybody’s business” because he was not a public representative.

“A house costing R16-million [€1.62 million] to construct only exists in the imaginations of right- wing, narrow-minded and obsessed white people, who always think Africans cannot and should not build houses of their own.”

When asked how he justified his lavish lifestyle to those he claimed to represent, he said his supporters did not care about his wealth. “Our people don’t care about our money. What they care about is political consciousness, the will to liberate them . . . Our people want the political will and the ability to act and that is what we are doing.”

He added: “One of the things I have learned in my short life in politics is the ability to live in the conditions of capitalism while fighting it and defeating it. I don’t exploit people.”

Malema boasted that he was the only ANC leader who could go into any informal settlement in the country, an outburst that observers say is a swipe at South African president Jacob Zuma.

He has always had a difficult relationship with the South African media. In yesterday’s daily Times newspaper, an editorial called him the true face of a 21st- century post-apartheid revolutionary.

“In post-apartheid South Africa, revolutionaries have transformed themselves. Now they use the language of liberation, and lyrics from struggle songs, to mask an acquisitive nature that revels in conspicuous consumption,” the paper said.

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  • rjp

    As part of his plans to redistribute wealth, Malema has been calling on the ANC to nationalise the mines …. .

    Want to see some real mine disaters?

  • Tim in Indiana

    This idiot is about as corrupt as they come. His remarks are so demented they sound like the rantings of a madman. “Live in the conditions of capitalism while fighting it and defeating it?” What he’s doing is milking it every step of the way. Unfortunately, his is the new face of “leadership” in South Africa. SA is the new Zimbabwe.

  • Madison Grant

    He’s not much different than Lenin, Mao, Castro, Hugo Chavez, etc.

    They all said they were against the rich and for “the people” yet when in power they and their flunkies lived in mansions while enjoying limos, private jets, fur coats. etc.

  • Anonymous

    He’s not much different than Lenin, Mao, Castro, Hugo Chavez…They all said they were against the rich and for “the people” yet when in power they and their flunkies lived in mansions while enjoying limos, private jets, fur coats. etc.

    You left off the obamas.

  • A Comment from Australia

    Yes, this man has all the makings of the next African leader and he seems to have what it takes. He will promise his people everything but they will have nothing except blood, misery and overpopulation. He will live in a fancy mansion while his people will live in squalor. He will travel in a bullet proof limo while the SA public transport system (and just about everything else) collapses. He will travel the world meeting the likes of Obama and will always begging for aid. At home he will be the Ruthless dictator & president for life.Yes welcome to the new South Africa.

    As for SA Whites, I really think your worst fears are soon to be realised. Get out while you can and come to Oz, Canada or even the USA where you just may be able to help raise the level of white consciousness as part of the overall survival of the white race.

    As for “Shoot the Boer (farmer)”, don’t worry the rest of the world will feed (some) of us.

  • Laager

    His nationalisation of the mines statements actually demonstrate how stupid he is.

    Whilst the mineral wealth may lie beneath the surface in South Africa the majority shareholding ownership and control resides in the western world.

    The main benefit the mines are to SA is the tax revenue they generate and the reinvestment of the company profits in other enterprises. Thus through the capitalist system the benefits are spread around (to mainly black people) as more jobs are created and more income tax is generated which should be re-invested for the benefit of the nation.

    And surprise, surprise – where does the expertise reside that mines the ore, refines it, and sells it on the global markets?

    In the minds of the white man

    The very people he is hell bent on forcing out of the job market through AA and BEE and ultimately out of through country through emigration

    So let him nationalise the mines

    He will quickly discover that all he owns is a big empty hole in the ground

  • Anonymous

    Here’s a picture of his house: http://tinyurl.com/3psz9dp

  • Sme

    as you said “Yes, this man has all the makings of the next African leader and he seems to have what it takes. He will promise his people everything but they will have nothing except blood, misery and overpopulation. He will live in a fancy mansion while his people will live in squalor. He will travel in a bullet proof limo while the SA public transport system (and just about everything else) collapses. He will travel the world meeting the likes of Obama and will always begging for aid. At home he will be the Ruthless dictator & president for life.Yes welcome to the new South Africa.”

    Australian not HE WILL, he is already doing this…….this boys favourite idol is Bob Mugabe…it is shocking that the ANC let him spew his poison among the illiterate masses. They all idolise him and unfortunately they are the voting power behind the ANC.