Lenasia demolitions: Give them money and land – Malema
The government must compensate the people whose homes were demolished in Lenasia, expelled ANC Youth League president Julius Malema has said.
“Give them money and land to go build,” Malema yesterday told a group of people in Lenasia, south of Johannesburg.
“Land is your right … and we must never feel ashamed that we [are] building houses.”
He said it was government land, which meant it belonged to the people.
The ANC and government should be embarrassed by what happened, Malema said.
“From killing people in Marikana to demolishing houses.
“On their behalf we accepting their embarrassment,” he said.
Malema inspected three areas where houses were demolished in Lenasia two weeks ago.
When he arrived in extension 13, community members sang and danced. Women stood around shouting: “I love Juju.”
Malema inspected the area. He was joined by suspended ANCYL spokesperson Floyd Shivambu and suspended secretary-general Sindiso Magaqa.
Malema and his entourage climbed over the rubble of the demolished houses.
When Malema arrived at the front door of a woman’s house, she ran out and dropped to her knees at his feet and cried. Malema comforted her, telling her: “Don’t cry.”
He said the woman was brave, because when demolishers had tried to tear down her house she had gone inside and refused to leave. In the end her house was spared.
“We salute this woman. She has courage,” Malema said.
He said the government was targeting poor people because they did not have the money to defend themselves.
“They target those who don’t have money,” Malema said.
He pointed to a block of flats near to where some houses had been demolished.
He said the government would not demolish the flats, because it knew the people who owned them had the money to take them to court.
“You’ll find these ones [the flat owners] have a hand in it [the demolitions] because they want to expand [their own building].”
The ANC was turning on its people, Malema said.
“It can’t be that the ANC … is eating its own people,” he said.
“They must give you alternative land. You must have a piece of land. It’s your right to have a piece of land.”
Malema told the group not to start rebuilding their houses, but to find alternative accommodation until a solution was found.
“Those who have suffered from demolition, be strong. We want you to be compensated … You’ve been crooked,” he said.
“We’ve come to give you support, even if there is nothing we can do. We can tell you: your pain is our pain.”
Malema also inspected extension four, Lenasia.
People came out of their houses with their children to catch a glimpse of him.
He ended his visit by attending a closed meeting with residents.