Dear Provincial Secretary Comrade Zikalala,
Kindly receive our warm and revolutionary greetings from the Regional Office Bearers (ROB’s) of the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) in KwaZulu-Natal province.
On behalf of the Metalworkers in KwaZulu-Natal we wish to convey our greetings and solidarity to the delegates to the 7th Provincial Conference.
We consider the deliberations to your Provincial Conference to be of absolute importance.
The ANC, as a leader of the Alliance, has a historical task of consolidating and deepening the National Democratic Revolution (NDR) in order to achieve the strategic goals of the Freedom Charter.
These tasks of the NDR are better captured or described in the Strategy & Tactics of the ANC adopted in Morogoro, Tanzania, 1969: “in our country – more than in any other part of the oppressed world – it is inconceivable for liberation to have meaning without a return of the wealth of the land to the people as whole.
It is therefore a fundamental feature of our strategy that victory must embrace more than formal political democracy.
To allow the existing economic forces to retain their interests intact is to feed the root of racial supremacy and does not represent even the shadow of liberation”
This caption better explains why the ANC must lead a working class orientated and biased National Democratic Revolution (NDR) to resolve the triple crisis of unemployment, poverty and deepening inequalities.
Our collective achievements since the 1994 democratic breakthrough have been to advance the democratization of political power.
But the economic power remains firmly in the grip of those who accumulated ill-begotten wealth in the apartheid era.
Your Conference provides a space to navigate the renewed calls for the nationalisation and socialization of monopoly industries in line with the demands of the Freedom Charter.
The political power that we now enjoy on April 27 every year is meaningless because the economic jewelry still resides in the hands of white monopoly capital and apartheid apologists.
Your Conference must be firm and declare that nationalisation, democratic control and ownership of monopoly industries should be advanced by the ANC-led Alliance government in order to meet the goals of the Freedom Charter and electoral commitments made to the people of South Africa, particularly the working class and the poor.
The calls for nationalisation are not an attack on the leadership collective of the ANC or ploy for a leadership change.
If we go back in history, the very position we are championing, former ANC President Thabo Mbeki, wrote about the South Africa’s apartheid capitalist colonialism in 1978.
Former President Mbeki once said about the Freedom Charter: “we are producers of wealth. We produce this wealth for our own benefit to be appropriated by us the producers.
The aim of this production shall be the satisfaction, at an increased level, of the material and spiritual needs of the people.
We shall so order the rest of society and social activity, in education and culture, in the legal sphere, on military questions, in our international relations, et cetera, to conform to these goals”.
This defines the theoretical basis of the Freedom Charter and the political programme of the ANC as adopted in 1956.
The envisaged New Growth Path (NGP) and the National Development Plan (NDP) as presented by President Jacob Zuma-led administration, particularly the Ministry of Economic Development and Ministry in the Presidency for National Planning should be thoroughly debated by delegates to your Conference.
We firmly hold the view that the two are embedded in the old and failed neo-liberal GEAR policy.
Even worse the two are not a product of a shared Alliance outcome, but were conceived to maintain the status quo and continued economic trajectory fostered and entrenched in the movement by the partially dislodged 1996 class project.
We urge Conference delegates not to be entangled in petty leadership contestations, but focus more on the critical tasks or challenges faced by our people.
We need to continue with an ANC-led, working class driven transformational struggle that confronts and overcomes race, gender and class poverty in their deep-seated interconnection.
The Conference delegates should be conscious of the fact that in South Africa today, because of the historic dominance of our economy by the Minerals/Energy and Finance Complex and this Complex is dominated by white ownership and control, we live in a country in which the white population dominates both in the economy and society.
The majority of the population, who are black and largely African and by and large are the working class, the key constituency base of the ANC-led Alliance, suffer mass poverty, effects of massive and chronic unemployment and the effects of extreme social, cultural and economic inequalities.
If this remains unchanged, we will forever see violent service delivery protests in mainly working class and poor communities for faster and improved service delivery.
As NUMSA we will be celebrating our twenty five (25) years of existence on Thursday May 17, 2012. We are proud and happy that our Anniversary coincides with the centenary year of the ANC.
As part of celebrating our 25th Anniversary we will use the celebratory occasion to raise levels of consciousness amongst our members through intensive political education and swell the ranks of the ANC.
The swelling of the ranks of the ANC is not entryism nor do we want to capture the ANC, but to safeguard the ANC as a parliament of the people for a better life for all.
Lastly, we hope your Conference will unify the movement, the Alliance and the Mass Democratic Movement (MDM) as a whole.
The words of the late ANC President Comrade Oliver Tambo must find resonance and expression amongst the delegates when he said: “wage a relentless war against disrupters and defend the ANC…Be vigilant, comrades… Beware of the wedge-driver, the man who creeps from ear to ear, carrying a bag full of wedges, driving them in between you and the next man, between a group and another, a man who goes round creating splits and divisions. Beware of the wedge-driver, comrades. Watch his poisonous tongue”.
We wish you a successful Congress, the ANC is ours and we will defend it!
Tel: +2779 502 3242
Numsa Press Release