'Political language becoming more violent in SA'

The ANC has distanced itself from a comment by its Youth League leader that the EFF must be given a war.

FILE: EFF supporters protest outside Parliament after the party's MPs were forcibly removed the National Assembly on 17 May 2016. Picture: Aletta Harrison/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - As the African National Congress (ANC) says it will deal with ANC Youth League leader Collen Maine over his comment that war must be brought to the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), violence experts and political analysts say political language is becoming more violent.

EFF leader Julius Malema has said people should burn down ANC offices while earlier this week the Democratic Alliance (DA) claimed the ANC had prevented it from campaigning in two areas of Ekurhuleni.

Malema has said the people who are burning down schools should stop attacking them and start burning ANC offices.

The ANC's Khusela Sangoni says, "As the ANC, we do not condone war talk regardless of who it comes from. South Africa is committed to building political tolerance and any effort that seeks to undermine that is anti to the society we want to build."

Independent violence monitor, Mary De Haas says politicians have a duty to be responsible.

"Given the climate in South Africa we're seeing now, with the burning of clinics and schools and universities, I think any talk and threat is exceedingly dangerous."

While political analyst, Professor Somadoda Fikeni says political language is getting more dangerous.

"If not checked, it might lead to a violent political culture and this is also correlated with frustrations over socioeconomic issues."

He says that this could lead to more public and political spaces being securitised, which is bad for a consolidating democracy.