South Africa: Malema Says He'll Persuade EFF Elective Conference to Agree to a Women's Command

14 December 2019

EFF leader Julius Malema says he will be persuading the party's National People's Assembly to agree to a women's command wing in the party.

He said that the wing was already engraved in the party's constitution and that the suggestion was not anything new.

"Women's command is my input to persuade conference to agree. I am not saying anything new [about women's command]. It is in the constitution of the EFF," Malema said during a media briefing at Nasrec, Johannesburg, on Saturday.

The party is holding its second National People's Assembly at the venue and set to elect new leadership to serve for the next five years.

News24 previously reported that some members of the party had accused Malema of resisting the formation of youth and women's wings, saying that it would challenge his authority in the party.

In its discussion document, the party identifies one of its weaknesses in its formative five years as having "not yet attained organisational maturity necessary for it to carry additional organisations such as trade unions, women and youth wings, which are mandated by the constitution".

The party adds in the document that the wings, and possibly a union, are necessary instruments.

"I'm persuaded on the formation of the women's command, not because there has been a thorough political work to produce the cremé de la cremé of women in the organisation - we are still working on that," Malema previously said during a media briefing ahead of the conference.

The party's elective conference got off to a dramatic start from the first day of registration on Friday, as issues around media freedom arose after certain publications were not accredited to cover it.

There have also been reports of the exorbitant amounts that the party said it would be spending on the conference.

Almost R32m has been spent on the conference, to give delegates from across the country VIP treatment, treasurer general Leigh-Ann Mathys told journalists on Friday during the first media briefing.

Speaking on the costs, Malema said the R32m was not an exact amount: "it can be more, it can be less".

He said guests in the Business Lounge had contributed money towards the conference, adding that the social evening, to be held on Sunday evening, was being funded by money raised from guests in the business lounge.

"Maybe there will be some change, and the new leadership will see what we do[with it]," he said.

The plenary is expected to discuss and adopt the party's constitution, as well as nominate and vote for a new top six.


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