Congress Declaration of the SACP Moses Kotane 08th Provincial Congress
17-19 November 2017 at Ngwenya Hotel, Stilfontein (Matlosana)
It is not the consciousness of humankind that determines their being, but, on the contrary, their social being that determines their consciousness - Karl Marx
We, the 598 revolutionary and militant communist delegates drawn from our four SACP Districts, the Young Communist League of South Africa (YCLSA), the Progressive Youth Alliance (PYA), the Revolutionary Alliance and our international fraternal allies wish to declare that we have convened under the theme: Defend, Advance, Deepen the National Democratic Revolution; The Vanguard Role of the SACP.
Our Provincial Congress takes place in the context of the global commemoration of the centenary of the Great October Socialist Revolution which gave birth to the first ever Workers` State. We remain inspired by this Socialist Revolution and the continued relevance of the clarion call by Karl Marx - Workers of the World Unite!
Our Provincial Congress takes place just over three months after the historic 14th National Congress of our Party and we are cognisant of our huge responsibility to take forward the key tasks emanating from our national congress. Our Congress was also attended by the SACP Central Committee. We received the keynote address from our General Secretary on behalf of the Central Committee, an address which coincided squarely with the theme of the congress.
We are deeply encouraged by tremendous growth in SACP membership in the province, from 16 000 to 21 965. In line with our programme, the South African Road to Socialism, we seek to build a large, but vanguard Party. A large party is not necessarily a mass party, as the size of the Party is not a fixed number of members, but is determined by the tasks at hand. This clearly imposes obligations to step up our ideological development program to ensure the readiness of SACP membership to increasingly propel state and popular power.
International balance of forces
We are proud of the revolutionary role played by the icons of our revolutionary movement namely, Chris Hani, Moses Kotane, J.B Marks, O.R Tambo, Joe Slovo, Dora Tamana, to mention but a few, who waged relentless struggles to emancipate our people from national oppression and class exploitation.
The congress was graced by the delegation from the Palestinian Embassy, Communist Party of Swaziland, Botswana National Front (BNF) and other progressive formations.
We note the current spate of activities taking place in neighbouring Zimbabwe where the soldiers have embarked on a politico-military intervention. In seeking to resolve the current impasse, we strongly believe that the interests of the toiling masses should never be compromised. We fully support the initiative by our Central Committee to broadly engage progressive forces in pursuit of finding an amicable solution to the political quagmire in Zimbabwe.
We note the situation confronting the people of Swaziland under the viciously oppressive Mswati regime. The congress further notes and condemns the ongoing blatant abuse of young women by the Swazi king as demonstrated by amongst others the recent forced- marriage of a young school girl. We further recommit to strengthen our Revolutionary relations with progressive forces in that country in particular the Communist Party of Swaziland.
We have noted with utter dismay, and condemn, the acts of brutality perpetrated by the Zionist state of Israel against the people of Palestine and the material support they are receiving from the United States and its allies. The congress remains opposed to the sanctions imposed on Palestine and its people.
We resolved to further intensify our historical ties and solidarity with the People of Cuba, Venezuela, China as well as other progressive organisations notably the Botswana National Front and the Communist Party of Lesotho amongst others.
Congress is inspired by progress made in solidifying our strategic and working relations with organised workers in the province in particular Cosatu, its affiliates as well as other trade unions outside Cosatu.
We, however, note the current challenges facing unions, in particular the retrenchments in the various sectors of our economy. Such retrenchments when carried through will not only affect the workers but also many of their dependents.
Congress calls on State Institutions and communities to work together to find a lasting solution to the incessant attacks on the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) by rival reactionary unions. We reaffirm our commitment to defend the NUM as well as other progressive unions that are victims of similar attacks.
Unity of the Alliance
Congress noted the appalling state of the Alliance in the province and expressed discontent with this state of affairs. We reaffirm the centrality of the Alliance in pursuing the National Democratic Revolution. Attempts to undermine the Alliance are in fact efforts to disregard the Revolution. We condemn attempts by the leader of the Alliance to treat the rest of the members of the Alliance as junior partners. This was demonstrated by the manner in which the Provincial Secretary of the SACP was released from the Provincial Executive, an act which was mainly aimed at embarrassing and undermining the Party. We will not tolerate any further unilateral taking of decisions. In most cases these decisions are being made by an individual or a faction whilst reducing other partners to side-line political observers.
We remain committed to build the Revolutionary Alliance. However, it is evident that the Alliance in its current form has been reduced to electoral machinery of the ANC. The significantly marginalised consensus-seeking consultation on major policy and deployment decisions further impacts on the Alliance. Congress reaffirms the 14th National Congress decision on an urgent reconfiguration of the Alliance.
State and popular power
We noted with great appreciation our 14th National Congress resolutions to actively contest elections and an organisational commitment to a process to develop a Road Map in this regard. We note with concern and condemn in the strongest possible terms the deliberate efforts by some within our movement in the province to distort and misrepresent our national congress resolution on this matter. We regard such efforts as uninvited pure meddling in the internal affairs of the SACP as an independent organisation. We call upon all those who have an interest in understanding our resolutions to read the resolutions as they are already available on the website of the SACP and also engage the Party`s leadership rather than engage in a counter-revolutionary misinformation campaign.
Our Congress has resolved that the current arrangement of contesting elections through the ANC-led Alliance electoral platform is outdated and needs to be reviewed urgently. We have therefore resolved that in preparation for the SACP Special National Congress in 2018, we will submit that the only practical way of engaging in the elections is through a reconfigured Alliance. The Alliance must be a strategic political centre. In the absence of an Alliance agreement on this matter, we will be left with no option but to contest the elections independent of the ANC - this the SACP should engage directly and through building a strong and properly co-ordinated popular left front. We call upon the SACP Central Committee to study the Botswana Opposition Parties` electoral Alliance through the Umbrella for Democratic Change.
We shall also intensify our work to build both a broad patriotic front to protect our country and democratic sovereignty, as well as a popular left front to defend, deepen and advance the National Democratic Revolution towards Socialism.
Congress draws inspiration from the decision of the Central Committee to give approval for the SACP to contest the 29 November 2017 by-elections in Metsimaholo, Free State Province. We will be making our own contribution as a province to ensure successful contest in Metsimaholo.
Fight against gender-based violence
The delegates to Congress noted the glaring violence against women and children across all levels of society.
We will initiate formidable campaigns to name and shame perpetrators of such shameful acts. In our endeavour to invigorate our campaigns, we will empower women to fight side-by-side with progressive revolutionary forces in order to find programmatic solutions to this scourge. We re-affirm our commitment to take forward this work in the coming months within the context of our 2017-18 Red October Campaign.
Our Campaign to confront the scourge of violence against women and children coincides with Comrade Julius Nyerere`s assertion that "when the people stand-up, imperialism trembles". Indeed there will be no successful revolution without the masses.
We will further continue to lobby government support for our campaign through amongst others the Ministry for Women based in the Presidency.
Provision of equitable health care
Congress is emboldened by the progress made at the pilot site for the rollout of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHI) to ensure people gain access to affordable health care. Whilst we appreciate the intentions and benefits of the NHI, we are aware of the neo-liberal offensive that stands opposed to NHI and wants to continue with the further privatisation of health services. We will defend the comprehensive implementation of NHI by our democratic government.
Congress remains resolute in defending and advancing the interests of the working class. We have generated resolutions to inform programs on the SACP and the workplace, the economy, the battle of ideas, gender & social transformation as well as Party Building and Organisational Renewal. We will further intensify ideological development through regular Party classes and other political education programmes.
We emerge from our 8th Provincial Congress much stronger, united and focussed on building a powerful Vanguard Party geared towards tackling the challenges facing the working class and poor across the length and breadth of our province. Congress has positioned the Party in the Province to be at the forefront of major class battles in the current conjuncture.
We therefore declare that we will: Defend, Advance and Deepen the National Democratic Revolution!
Socialism is the Future; Build it Now!
The SACP Moses Kotane 08th Provincial Congress unanimously elected the following members to serve as the Provincial Executive Committee (PEC);
Provincial Secretary: Madoda Sambatha
Provincial Chairperson: Smuts Matshe
Provincial Treasurer: Washington Ntozini
Deputy Provincial Chairperson: Tebogo Modise
01st Deputy Provincial Secretary: Nick Maphelle
02nd Deputy Provincial Secretary: Thabo Mashomo
Members of the PEC:
- Seitebaleng Dikole
- Francis Ratlhaga
- Khaya Ndincede
- Masello Senne
- Shadrak Mvula
- Motlalepula Lekoma
- Deliwe Zethi
- Mpho Motlhabane
- Pabatso Ntsoti
- Lesego Lejaka
- Louis Diremelo
- Letticia Basson
- Puleng Mohoase
- Mmoloki Cwaile
- Magome Masike