South Africa's Malema escapes political ban, for now

Reuters News
Posted: Feb 10, 2014 6:43 AM

PRETORIA (Reuters) - Left-wing South African politician Julius Malema narrowly escaped being barred from public office on Monday when a judge placed him under "provisional sequestration" due to outstanding debts of 16 million rand ($1.4 million) to the tax authorities.

A full sequestration ruling would have prevented Malema from taking a seat in parliament after May 7 elections had his Economic Freedom Fighters party gained sufficient votes.

His lawyer told Reuters that Malema, a strident critic of President Jacob Zuma, was considering an appeal against the provisional ruling even though it did not affect his political ambitions.

($1 = 11.0790 South African rand)

(Reporting by David Dolan; Editing by Ed Cropley)