Julius Malema on Thursday harshly criticized the decision of the South African government to reopen religious institutions, warning it will lead to unimaginable catastrophe.
“I plead with religious leaders not to open their places. You are the ones who should be saying your members should not come to church. Do not go to church, you are going to die.”
“It’s a trap. Our people can still pray at home,” the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader was quoted as saying Thursday.
President Cyril Ramaphosa on Tuesday announced the reopening of certain sectors of the economy, as well as, religious institutions and schools with the call on South Africans to assume responsibility of their wellbeing in the battle to stem the spread of the coronavirus, local media reports.
The government’s decision angered the EFF leadership, who have accused Ramaphosa of shirking his constitutional responsibilities and oath of protecting South Africans. Malema argued that the decision was reckless.
“He was telling us that he is no longer in charge. He has surrendered the country to the looming Covid-19 catastrophe, for the benefit of white monopoly profit interests,” The red berets’ commander-in-chief said during the organization’s first media briefing since the outbreak.
“We call upon the caring leaders of religion not to connive with white capital to kill black people. Our people can still pray at home,” he added.
Again, Malema argued that reopening schools was also premature and there was no scientific justification for that, bemoaning that the country is being led by “f**ls, non-thinkers, people sitting on top of their brains.”
Ramaphosa in a speech to the country then said that “all South Africans [need] to wear a face mask whenever you leave home” even after restrictions had been lifted.
According to him, easing of the lockdown had become necessary because “our people need to eat and they need to earn a living.”
South Africa has so far recorded 27,403 confirmed cases of the coronavirus with 577 deaths and 14,370 recoveries.