“You may have heard Julius Malema saying over the weekend that the ANC is worse than apartheid. It is wrong to create this impression among South Africans,” he said.
“Apartheid was worse because it was a system of entrenched racism. Apartheid was worse because we couldn’t vote out apartheid. In fact, we couldn’t vote at all.”
The Economic Freedom Fighters’ (EFF) leader said at the rally in Lethabong near Rustenburg, North West, on Saturday that black people would never own land under the ANC.
“Our struggle is about land. [Former president Nelson] Mandela was arrested for demanding land,” Malema said.
Maimane said “the sacrifice that so many made for our freedom” had to be remembered.
“Like so many others where I grew up, I used to be an ANC supporter. I believed that the ANC could bring about a better life for me and my family,” he said.
“Since then I have seen how that once proud movement has lost its way under the current leadership.”
He said apartheid was forced on the people against their will, while the ANC was “not compulsory”.
“The ANC is a political party in a democracy. We can vote for another party if we feel let down by the one in power.”