• Malema threatened to use weapons to oust the government
  • ANC calls for state authorities to probe Malema's conduct

South Africa’s ruling African National Congress accused Economic Freedom Fighters leader Julius Malema of making “seditious” comments when he threatened to use arms to overthrow President Jacob Zuma’s government in an interview with al-Jazeera television.

The ANC, in a statement Monday, urged the government to investigate Malema’s statements, saying they displayed “a shocking lack of judgment.”

In his al-Jazeera interview, Malema said the government has responded to protests with violence. “We will run out of patience very soon and we will remove this government through the barrel of a gun,” he said, according to al-Jazeera.

Malema, 35, led the EFF to become the second-biggest opposition party less than a year after it was formed in 2013 following his expulsion from the ANC for insulting senior leaders and allegedly bringing the party into disrepute. The EFF won 6.4 percent of the vote in the May 7 national election, while the ANC’s share slipped to 62.2 percent from 65.9 percent in 2009.

“These remarks are a call to violence, are inflammatory, treasonable and seditious and should be treated with extreme seriousness,” ANC spokesman Zizi Kodwa said in the statement. “The ANC calls on state authorities to urgently investigate this matter and act against such conduct.”

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