Economic Freedom Fighters leader Julius Malema engaged in a heated debate with his followers and EFF voters after defending Enlightened Christian Gathering church leader Shepherd Bushiri against tweets from parody account @AdvBarryRoux on Thursday.
“Last Sunday we didn’t have Sunday Twitter due to the phone issues. It’s time to make it up to the Black Twitter Community. Under the powers vested on me by the Black Twitter Constitution I hereby open Sunday Twitter. Bushiri,” tweeted @AdvBarryRoux before a series of tweets alleging a number of things against Bushiri.
However, Malema thought Bushiri was being treated unfairly, and further said he would share his reasons for defending Bushiri on Sunday. He said he would not, however, comment on his criminal case, but only on matters of spirituality, further denying claims he was a member of the church.
“You want to take away my right to think. You won’t do that; no one can do that. You can deal with a criminal case is fine; I don’t want to get involved in that one because I don’t have the facts,” said Malema.
Some of his followers were, however, not impressed with his decision to defend Bushiri, and told him to leave spiritual issues “to the masses and their prophets”.
Malema adamantly said he would not be denied the right to express his views.
“You can’t do that, telling me to stay away from engaging on issues. Never,” said Malema.
As some further warned him against commenting on matters relating to Bushiri, saying he stood a risk of giving people a reason not to vote for the EFF, others advised him to wait for elections to pass before defending Bushiri.
“Watch your steps,” warned @RisonThobejane.
But Malema said he would not let people “threaten” him with votes.
“If you want to vote for non-thinkers, try next door,” insisted Malema.
“@Julius_S_Malema you can’t divorce criminal case from the spiritual aspect because spirituality on its own it’s a guide away from ills, including criminality. Any argument that seeks to separate this particular matter will be starting on a wrong foot,” said @mogomotsi091, to which Malema replied: “But he’s not charged for spiritual issues in court. Therefore your argument is weak because issues are separated even in court.”