Helen Zille, chairperson of the Democratic Alliance’s federal council, has again attacked the EFF and its leader, Julius Malema, portraying the party as a “cult” and Malema as its cult leader.
Zille slammed Malema’s leadership in an interview with JJ Tabane this week.
In response to the alleged “crises” within her party, Zille drew parallels with the EFF, claiming that the difference between the DA and the EFF is that the latter is led by a dictator.
“If you want a cult look at Julius Malema,” said Zille. “Julius Malema was upset by how the EFF did in Limpop o and he fired the whole Limpopo [provincial leadership]. What the EFF has got is a dictatorship problem and that is what a cult is.”
Malema abolished the EFF Limpopo provincial leadership in January, citing a drop in the party’s popularity in the province.
Malema’s word in the EFF, according to Zille, is final, and its caucus cannot differ from it.
“If John Steenhuisen had to say to a DA caucus you will now vote for the EFF, it would turn and say ‘are you mad?.’ But Julius Malema can go to an entire EFF caucus and say ‘you’re now going to vote for a DA mayor’ and they do. He runs an autocracy and we run a democracy.”
Zille also accused ActionSA leader Herman Mashaba of being comparable, asserting that he was recruiting politicians from democratically run parties and that they would soon “bump heads.”
Zille likened Malema to Hitler last year.
She was responding to statements that the DA went too far when it compared EFF protesters at Brackenfell High School to Nazis.
Zille said the DA’s statement was correct and profound in a podcast series hosted by former Financial Mail editor Peter Bruce called Podcasts from the Edge.
“What the red shirts in SA are doing is precisely what the brown shirts did in the Weimar Republic. It is no stretch at all. That is how Hitler built his support and this is how Julius Malema is building his support. As Churchill said, people who will not learn from history are bound to repeat it.”