Leader of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) Julius Malema visited the family of slain Mthokozisi Ntumba on Sunday afternoon, to pay his respects, and to “help ease the pain” following his death. 

35-year-old Ntumba was allegedly shot dead by police after finding himself caught in the crossfire during a student protest in Braamfontein on Wednesday.

Calls have since been made to rename the street where he died after him, which the party endorsed. 

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After meeting with Ntumba’s family, Malema told the media the party felt strongly about what happened to him, and that his family “deserves our support, and the support of all South Africans.”

Julius Malema during Mthokozisi Ntumba visit

EFF leader Julius Malema is greeted by supporters as he makes his way to the late Mthokozisi Ntumba’s family’s home. Photo: Twitter/@EFFSouthAfrica

“We are here to say to the family, they are not alone. We are highly disappointed by what the police have done.”

Malema said he and party representatives were “well received”, but that the family are “not coping at all”. 

Ntumba’s youngest child is just five months old. 

Malema said what made matters “worse” was that, following police minister Bheki Cele’s visit on Thursday, a contact was provided regarding the burial. He said the contact was asking the family questions, “like don’t you have a stokvel to contribute to the burial, which is unnecessary.”

“Even if they had a policy… that money can be reinvested to take care of his children, and the government must take care of his burial fund…

“We want to make sure that government pays, and pays a lot of money, for killing an innocent soul.” 

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Malema added that “the killing of one innocent soul should necessitate for the minister to step down”.

The party has committed to providing lawyers and legal support to Ntumba’s family.

They also plan to make a court application to the Constitutional Court to call for the use of rubber bullets to be declared a human rights violation. 

“People have the right to protest, especially peacefully. Even the stun grenades must not be used. Guns must come when there is violence. The use of rubber bullets must be declared unconstitutional.” 

Watch the interview he conducted after his visit below: 

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