It seems relationships are becoming strained as political leaders try to court each other in the race to form coalitions after the local government elections.
Kunene was a member of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) when it formed in 2013. He acted as the party’s head of campaigns, mobilisation and special projects, but resigned in August that year.
Since then, Kunene and EFF leader Julius Malema have had a few public squabbles.
In 2016, Kunene called Malema a ‘liar’.
“I founded the EFF… One of the reason that I left the EFF is exactly what is happening now in the EFF: The lies, the facade that is being put to the people of SA and the world that this is a revolutionary movement and that their leader is revolutionary man whereas he is the biggest liar,” Kunene said during an interview on Morning Live.
Their falling-out was fired up again on Tuesday as the deadline looms for political parties to form coalitions in hung municipalities. Kunene is the deputy president of the Patriotic Alliance (PA), the party that emerged as coalition kingmakers during the local government elections.
Negotiations between the EFF and PA seemed to stall, however, and on Tuesday, Malema said he was ‘conflicted’ about working with mapantiti (convicts). Kunene and McKenzie have both spent time in prison.
The row then escalated on Wednesday when Kunene called Malema a cockroach during a live interview on eNCA.
“I am going to deal with him. He must tell me I am a crook to my face. I will call the media and address these issues publicly, and tell them why I really decided to leave the EFF. We just have to conclude our coalitions, help form governments, then I will deal with this little cockroach called Julius Malema.”
McKenzie didn’t remain silent either. In a tweet, the PA leader brushed off the mapantiti slur by admitting to being a criminal in the past but said he and Kunene are now serving their communities.
The feud lit up timelines on Twitter as well. This is what some had to say on the matter: