South African opposition leader, Julius Malema, has paid tribute to the late Morgan Tsvangirai, urging his countrymen to learn from the fallen MDC-T president’s trials and tribulations.
The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader declared his party will never allow a situation in which those in power refuse to vacate office as happened in Zimbabwe in 2008.
“We say to the Tsvangirai family, the people of Zimbabwe and the MDC please receive our revolutionary condolences,” Malema told the South African Parliament this week.
The acerbic opposition leader at some point had no kind words for Tsvangirai accusing the late MDC-T president of being a front for whites. Malema, however, said this should not cloud Tsvangirai’s achievements.
“We may not have agreed with Tsvangirai’s politics but we admit that indeed he won the elections and the regime did not allow him to become the leader of the people of Zimbabwe.
“We want to say to Tsvangirai that will never happen in South Africa, here we will not allow those nonsensical things that happened to you in Zimbabwe,” the EFF leader said.
Malema has been agitating for compulsory acquisition of land in the same manner former President Robert Mugabe grabbed farms from whites.
The chaotic land redistribution exercise is now blamed for wrecking a once thriving economy.
Malema said South Africa should take a leaf from Zimbabwe’s errors, including on the governance front.
“We say to the people of South Africa we must learn from the mistakes of Zimbabwe and in honour of Tsvangirai we must never allow those who want to stay in power even when the people’s will indicates otherwise,” he said.
Tsvangirai won the first round of elections in 2008 but a combination of the military and Mugabe’s chicanery denied him the chance to take over. Mugabe forced through a bloody run off from which the late former Prime Minister pulled out citing systematic violence.
Tsvangirai died last week after a two year battle with cancer of the colon. He was laid to rest at his Buhera rural home on Wednesday.