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Malema slams capitalism, praises Mugabe

The EFF leader says his fighters are ready to galvanise support for his party ahead of polls.

Julius Malema (C) surrounded by other senior EFF leaders at a media briefing in Braamfontein, Johannesburg, 9 January 2014. Picture: Govan Whittles/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema on Thursday said his party plans to win this year's general elections, despite what he calls an uneven playing field.

The controversial politician along with senior party leaders held a media briefing in Braamfontein in central Johannesburg.

EFF revealed campaign plans while using the event to slam capitalism and praise Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe.

Malema says his fighters are ready to galvanise support for the EFF.

"Since the official launch in Marikana, fighters, commissars and organisers of EFF have been on the ground establishing structures."

He says they have been preparing the election machinery in order to conduct "one of the most vigorous" campaigns this year.

Malema says the EFF has been inundated with support from all over the country.

"We can now announce that all provinces have no less than 10,000 EFF volunteers who will be engaged in community meetings, door-to-door [campaigns], motorcades, mini-rallies, rallies and house meetings."

At the same time, the EFF leader hit out at capitalism, saying the system failed the people of South Africa.

He said the system further widened the gap between rich and poor in South Africa resulting in increased poverty levels.

Malema also argued in favour of Mugabe and the land reform programme adopted in that country.

Defending Mugabe's rule, Malema said detractors should remember the effects of capitalism in the country before criticising other nations such as Zimbabwe.

"There's no system that has worked successfully for Africans, except the Zimbabwean system. The Zimbabweans today can be hungry and poor, but at least they own property. You are eating pap and vleis here in South Africa, [but] you have nothing to show as proof that you belong to South Africa."

Malema also suggested struggle stalwart Winnie Madikizela-Mandela should be made president of the country to lead it through a long cooling-off period.

He says he regrets ignoring warnings by Madikizela-Mandela ahead of the 2009 polls not to support President Jacob Zuma.

But he dismissed rumours the party would try to recruit Nelson Mandela's ex-wife.

While the ANC launches its manifesto in Mbombela, Mpumalanga at the weekend, Malema says his party will be doing something more tangible by opening a house built by the EFF in Nkandla - Zuma's hometown.

He says EFF will launch its election manifesto on 22 February in Tembisa on Gauteng's East Rand.

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