EFF statements are not always meant to be taken literally - analyst

Speculation about an end to the EFF-DA coalitions comes after the DA announced that the party will report EFF leader Julius Malema to the Equality Court for incitement of violence and hate speech.

This, following Malema's utterances that the EFF will punish the DA for not supporting its land reform program.

On Tuesday the EFF CIC threatened to remove the DA's Nelson Mandela Bay mayor Athol Trollip. Speaking on The Midday Report, Mpumelelo Mkhabela from the Centre for the Study of Governance Innovation at the University of PTA said that there have always been tensions between the two parties arising from their political perspectives.

Secondly, arising out of the manner in which they conduct their politics, with the EFF preferring a more radical way of doing things, whereas the DA prefers the more constitutional way of doing things.

Mpumelelo Mkhabela, From the Department of Political Sciences at Unisa

Mkhabela emphasised that what kept the two parties together in spite their differences was Jacob Zuma.

Jacob Zuma kept them together because they were together in the project of getting rid of him or pressurising the ANC to get rid of him, their differences are now obvious and we will see more of it in the run up to the 2019 elections.

Mpumelelo Mkhabela, Department of Political Sciences at Unisa

In responding to Malema's words that state: " We are going to remove him, we are are going for your white man in PE, we are going to cut his throat", Mkhabela said it wouldn't be the first time that Malema was sent to the Equality Court.

Remember, he ended up there with his slogan 'kill the boer' and he argued back then at the time that in fact, it was just a figure of speech and that he did not mean that white people should be killed necessarily.

Mpumelelo Mkhabela, From the Department of Political Sciences at Unisa

Mkhabela says recent EFF statements seem to contain 'a defence mechanism' that suggests what was said was not meant literally.

For example, he says the EFF stating that because Trollip is white, and the DA represents white interests, and the land question is a matter of black interest, everything that is white about the DA must now be collapsed, is in his view an incorrect interpretation of DA politics.

Do South African political parties realise the importance of coalitions? Mkhabela says yes they do, however they have not accepted the principles that should underpin that.

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