African National Congress (ANC) Secretary General Ace Magashule says Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema was a good young leader of the ANC.
Magashule was addressing students at Tshwane University of Technology (TUT) on Wednesday afternoon.
Malema was a very good young leader of the ANC. A good leader of the ANC Youth League.
We pushed him, we nurtured him, we grilled him, and the politics he understands are the politics of the ANC. It’s just that, out of anger, people established other organisations.Ace Magashule
He was explaining how most opposition parties, including Malema’s EFF, emerged from the ANC.
He also mentioned Bantu Holomisa’s United Democratic Movement (UDM) and Mosiuoa Lekota’s Congress of the People (COPE) as ANC offshoots.
ANC nostalgia for Malema
Magashule’s comments about Malema come on the back of similar pro-Malema comments made by ANC leaders in the recent past.
At a campaign rally in the North West in April this year, Magashule also said he “loves Julius” and wants him to “return home” to the ANC.
ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa and Deputy President David Mabuza were also quoted in March 2018 saying they wanted Malema back in the ANC.
We would love to have Julius Malema back in the ANC. He is still ANC down‚ deep in his heart.Cyril Ramaphosa
I feel the ANC has lost in comrade Julius. The ANC will be better off with him inside the fold‚ so I am going to do my best to request him to reconsider coming back home.David Mabuza
Not going back
However, Malema has always insisted that he’ll never go back to the ANC.
In April, he said calls for him to return are just a ploy to confuse EFF members across the country.