Inside Malema and Ramaphosa’s four-eyes meeting

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema on Thursday met with ANC president Cyril Ramapphosa in a four-eyes meeting to discuss the incoming seventh administration.

At the meeting, revealed Malema, he placed EFF demands on the table. These include the ANC supporting the EFF national chairperson, Veronica Mente, as national assembly Speaker. EFF will return the favour by backing Ramaphosa for a second term.

If the ANC cannot meet this demand, said Malema, the EFF was willing to take the position of deputy speaker. However, only if the Speaker is from ANC ranks or other parties except the DA and the Freedom Front Plus.

Demand for Shivambu

Malema also told Ramaphosa that EFF deputy president Floyd Shivambu must be supported to the position of Portfolio Committee of Finance chairperson.

As the cherry on top, the EFF wants a couple of other portfolio committees in parliament.

He told Ramaphosa that the EFF will not want any position in the national executive to maintain its role as an opposition party.

Malema excluded himself from the positions that the EFF is demanding. This is in order to avoid the perception that the party is bargaining for him.

“This morning I have met with the president of the ANC in a four-eyes meeting. I communicated the decision of the EFF. That we will not participate in the GNU (Government of National Unity),” said Malema at the Taj Hotel in Cape Town.

“We said to him, despite not participating in the cabinet, we ask them to support our candidate for Speaker. And in exchange of supporting their candidate for president,. 

Speaker or deputy speaker (with conditions)

“If this does not succeed, we will accept the position of Deputy Speaker, provided Speaker is from ANC or progressive political parties.”

Malema placed another demand before Ramaphosa. This one is that the ANC should cease to “purge” the EFF members of mayoral committees in municipalities, particularly in municipalities where the two parties work together.

This comes after the ANC pulled the trigger on EFF Gauteng provincial chairperson Nkululeko Dunga on Wednesday night. It sacked him as MMC for finance in Ekurhuleni.

Malema told Ramaphosa that Dunga should be reinstated before midnight on Thursday. He said failing which, the EFF will force all its MMCs to resign. This refers to all municipalities where they are in partnership with the ANC.

Moreover, Malema urged Ramaphosa to convince his ANC comrades to let the Umkhonto WeSizwe (MK) Party govern KwaZulu-Natal. He said it was the party that got the most votes.

In this regard, he warned Ramaphosa that any attempt by the ANC to govern in KZN would provoke the people of that province. They will rise against the exclusion of the MK Party.

Support for MK Party

The EFF would vote for the candidate of the MK Party for Premier in KZN without demanding anything in return, he said.

In closing, Malema explained to Ramaphosa why the EFF was refusing to be part of a GNU that included the DA and FF Plus.

“We made it clear to the president that we are not against GNU but against inclusion of DA and FF Plus. These are parties that represent racism, imperialism and backwardness,” said Malema.

Ramaphosa and Malema will meet tonight for a follow-up meeting. The meeting will define the EFF stance in the all-important first sitting of national assembly on Friday. Here the Speaker, deputy speaker and president will be elected.

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