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South Africa’s ANC reins in youth leader: media

By on April 7, 2010

South Africa’s ruling ANC has ordered its youth leader to stop inflammatory comments after he was accused of stoking racial tension before the murder of white supremacist Eugene Terre’blanche, local media said.

Terre’blanche’s Afrikaner Resistance Movement and mainstream opposition parties have linked the killing to sentiment fuelled by Julius Malema and his singing of a song from the era of the struggle against apartheid with the words “Kill the Boer”.

The ruling African National Congress (ANC) has rejected any link between the song and the murder, but President Jacob Zuma has appealed for calm two months before South Africa is due to host the soccer World Cup.

ANC Secretary General Gwede Mantashe was quoted by the News 24 website on Wednesday as saying he and Zuma had met Malema on Tuesday and told him to stop making inflammatory statements and singing the song — ruled to be hate speech by South African courts.

“There will be very clear outcomes regarding Malema after our conversation with him. People will be able to see the result. The ANC and the youth league will restrain him,” Mantashe was quoted as saying. South African radio also carried the story.

Although markets have largely brushed off the political controversy, questions had been raised in South Africa as to why Zuma did not move more swiftly to restrain Malema from comments of particular concern to minorities.

Terre’blanche, who fought to preserve white rule in the 1990s, was hacked and battered to death on Saturday in what police believe was a dispute over pay with two black farm workers. They were charged with his murder on Tuesday.

His AWB was a fringe party among the 10 percent of whites among South Africa’s 48 million people.


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