Zuma: 'Malema knows what I said to him about his potential'

Former President Jacob Zuma expressed his satisfaction at Julius Malema welcoming him on Twitter, saying something good could come out of the EFF leader if properly guided.

President Jacob Zuma conducts a walkabout at the ANC national conference on Monday 18 December 2017. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – In case you have been off the grid for this past week, former President Jacob Zuma has joined Twitter and has been welcomed by many, including Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema.

In an Africa News 24-7 interview, Zuma spoke to the editor-in-chief, Steve Motale, to discuss his decision to join the social media platform.

Zuma said he joined Twitter because of the people.

I do everything for the people. I have realised that the people are on social media and there’s a lot of talk there and it’s important to be where the people are. These conversation at times say things about me and I have not been able to respond.

Former President Jacob Zuma

The former president says the platform will afford him the possibility to respond to fake news and other views.

Asked about Malema, who welcomed him on Twitter, he said he hasn’t disagreed with the EFF leader politically.

Malema knows what I said to him about his potential which I still believe if it’s properly guided as it was guided in the ANC. There is something that could come out of Malema, I have always said so. His welcoming me indicates some of his positive thinking and understanding.

Former President Jacob Zuma

The former president and EFF leader have exchanged blows in Parliament with the red berets asking Zuma to 'pay back the money' when former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela's report on Nkandla showed Zuma benefitted unduly from security upgrades to his KwaZulu-Natal home.

Malema has previously refused to call Zuma "president" in Parliament and referred to him as Duduzane's father instead.

Zuma also thanked people who welcomed him on the social media platform.