Julius Malema’s request to meet Jacob Zuma for tea has sparked questions about his intentions and motivation given their acrimonious history and the former president’s defiance of the Constitutional Court.
The Zondo Commission of inquiry has announced that it will be laying a criminal complaint against Zuma for refusing to appear before Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo last month as per his summons.
However, Zuma insists he would rather go to jail than appear before the commission. The Economic Freedom Fighter leader’s tweet raised eyebrows on Wednesday when he used the social media platform to reach out to Zuma, asking him to sit down for a cup of tea.
Zuma responded just a few hours later, also on Twitter, saying: “As you know, Nkandla village is home for me and that is where my time is spent these days. Tea I have plenty of, you are more than welcome to come over for a cup.”
Thank you Baba, I will make a plan to arrive, possibly this weekend. I will take it further with your young man @mzwandileMasina for final details. Thank you for accepting my request promptly. It is in the best interest of our country. 🙏🏿
— Julius Sello Malema (@Julius_S_Malema) February 3, 2021
In October, the Sunday Times reported that the state capture commission issued South Africa’s major banks with subpoenas to provide all Malema’s financial records, along with those of his wife and his late grandmother.
Political analyst Ralph Mathekga said that one thing Zuma and Malema appeared to have in common was investigations into their conduct by the Zondo Inquiry. “Malema might be seeing what’s coming for him and he might be building alliances against the commission. That is the only thing we can find here because there is nothing strategic that one can say they’re going to discuss, except for something that puts them in one place.”
On Wednesday, African National Congress secretary-general Ace Magashule came out to bat for Zuma, saying that the former president must be left alone.