01/08/2017 06:58 SAST | Updated 01/08/2017 06:58 SAST

EFF Unapologetic About Malema's Anti-Indian Remarks

The party says it must condemn oppression wherever it comes from, including when it comes from minorities.

RAJESH JANTILAL via Getty Images

The Economic Freedom Fighters will not apologise for comments made by its leader Julius Malema about Indians, News24 reported.

Malema said Indians were "worse than Afrikaners" during his address at the party's birthday celebrations in Durban on Saturday.

He reportedly said: "This is not an anti-Indian statement, it's the truth. Indians who own shops don't pay our people, but we give them food parcels."

On Monday night, EFF spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi said in a statement that the party was unapologetic about what Malema had said.

"Each time we come across the suffering and oppression of our people, we shall not mince our words, nor tiptoe around false minority feelings. When Africans in many townships explode in xenophobic violence against Pakistanis and other Africans from the continent, we condemn them.

"Equally, the racism that African people suffer in the hands of many Indian businesses and families must be condemned and must come to an end."

Malema's comments outraged the Indian community. According to IOL, KZN provincial human settlements and public works MEC Ravi Pillay said the community had had to deal with stereotyping like this "for some time, and we reject it with contempt as it goes against the principles of our Constitution."

A spokesperson for the minority party, Jonathan Annipen, said he would approach the Human Rights Commission.