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Julius Malema

Julius Malema




Julius Sello Malema, born on March 3, 1981, is a prominent South African politician renowned for founding and leading the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), a far-left political party distinguished by its members' red berets and military-style attire. Prior to establishing the EFF, Malema served as the President of the African National Congress (ANC) Youth League, a position he held from 2008 until his expulsion from the ANC in 2012.

Growing up in the township of Seshego near Polokwane, Malema was deeply involved in the ANC from a young age, eventually ascending to the presidency of its Youth League in 2008 amid controversial circumstances. During his tenure, he advocated for the nationalization of South Africa's mining industry and the expropriation of land without compensation, aligning himself closely with then-ANC President Jacob Zuma. However, tensions between Malema and Zuma escalated, leading to Malema's expulsion from the ANC in 2012 for bringing the party into disrepute.

Following his expulsion, Malema founded the EFF in 2013 and was subsequently elected to the National Assembly in 2014, securing 25 seats. Throughout his political career, Malema has been entangled in various legal issues, including convictions for hate speech and allegations of corruption, fraud, and money laundering. Despite these controversies, Malema remains a polarizing figure in South African politics, praised by some as a potential future leader while criticized by others as a reckless populist capable of destabilizing the country and stoking racial tensions.

Beyond politics, Malema has pursued higher education, completing degrees in communications, African languages, and philosophy from the University of South Africa (UNISA). He has been known for his fiery rhetoric and controversial statements, often alluding to violence and sparking both praise and condemnation from the public and media alike. In his personal life, Malema married in 2014 and has two sons, Munzhedzi and Kopano, along with a son from a previous relationship named Ratanang.


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