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EFF supporters gather in Freedom Park

Thousands gathered in Freedom Park in the North West to hear Julius Malema address a Youth Day rally.

FILE: Thousands gathered in Freedom Park in the North West to hear Julius Malema address a Youth Day rally. Picture: EWN.

RUSTENBURG -Thousands of people have gathered in an open field in Freedom Park in Rustenburg to hear Economic Freedom Fighters ( EFF) leader Julius Malema address a Youth Day rally.

South Africa is commemorating the 38th anniversary of the bloody 1976 Soweto uprising, which made global headlines at the time.

Supporters from various age groups arrived dressed in red regalia to hear the controversial politician's speech in the North West province.

EFF had a relatively good showing in the area during recent polls.

School pupils dressed in uniform are also attending the event.

Malema hasn't arrived just yet.

Crowds are being entertained with various on-stage performances.

Mineworkers from the troubled platinum belt, who have been on strike since January, are also attending the event.

They say they want to celebrate South Africa's history and forget about the problems in the industry.

Democratic Alliance (DA) Parliamentary leader Mmusi Maimane visited Soshanguve, north of Pretoria, to commemorate the event.

He lashed out at President Jacob Zuma for living in luxury while thousands of youth remain unemployed.

Youth Day events will take place across the country.

At least 176 people, including Hector Pieterson, were shot and killed by security forces over the introduction of Bantu education in schools.