Monday, March 01, 2010

Malema: the leech at the top

An earlier article in the Business Day, by Peter Bruce, stated:

The Editor of the Sunday Independent, Makhudu Sefara, recounted in his column yesterday the story of a businessman who tapped Malema for a R10 000 loan at a party just before last December. Malema flipped the man his bank card and gave him the PIN and the man drew the money. The slip that followed showed the
balance in the account to be R53m!

It is a breathtaking amount but, if the story is true, it would make it much easier to prosecute him. It would be impossible for him to have accumulated anything remotely like that legally. All that is required for the truth to be revealed is cross examination in a court of law.
The most recent article by Peter Bruce, 28 Feb 2010, follows:

IT IS good to know that one was right about Julius Malema all along. He is an idle leech who lives off government tenders – lots of them – and is exceedingly rich. People like Malema raise the cost of delivery in South Africa – to the detriment of the poor — because they cannot do the work they win tenders to do.

The story led the Sunday Times, Rapport and City Press. Either they had all been simultaneously stung into action by a story about Malema’s riches (only how he spends them, not how he makes them) earlier in the week in The Star, or someone in the know tipped off the Sunday papers about where to look. Most investigative journalism in South Africa these days arrives all neatly bundled on a journalist’s desk – someone else delivers the goods to the newspapers for whatever reason (grudge, mainly) in other words. I suspect you could count the number of real investigative journalists in this country on one hand.

Whatever. If Malema had any sense he would now be investing his cheaply gotten riches for his old age. It may look as if this kind of thing could go on forever but the “masses” so beloved of Julius will one day tire of it. We may trust, too, that the State, in its various identities, will be looking at the Malema fortune to find out whether, from a fiscal point of view, it has been properly taxed and, from a criminal viewpoint, properly earned.

It would probably be too much to expect that the public could be kept informed of the progress of any investiations. Not for a high profile ANC figure like him. But, silly silly boy. When you make enemies as quickly and as arrogantly as he has you shouldn’t be surprised when the dog you’ve been kicking bites back.

As for Limpopo, the province Malema and his friends milk for their lifestyles, it is fast becoming the closest thing we have to an official political criminal enterprise.

South Africa deserves better than this. I think we can safely assume that the ANC ‘leadership’, if that word can be applied to any part of the ruling party, wishes Malema would trip up. Maybe this is the moment. I imagine him up for trial on corruption charges and trying to bus large crowds to the court. Would they pitch? I doubt it.

And it would take just one criminal charge to stick for us to be rid of this thug from our politics forever. So, come on SARS! Come on the Hawks! Do the country a favour. It shouldn’t be that hard. Hell, even a murderer like Al Capone got stuck away, in the end, merely for tax evasion.

Malema’s apparent popularity in the ANC Youth League is scary. The first generation of ANC leaders took power without knowing anything about money and how wealth is created. They had to be rescued by benefactors. The upcoming generation appears to think creating (personal) wealth is in fact jolly easy. Tenderprise is like taking money legally from taxpayers and the poor. When will the party be run by people who appreciate how hard it is to run a business and create jobs and take risks?

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