1.The middle class use the working class to achieve their own self-interests!
2.The middle class aims of the ANC is one of the factors accelerating privatization
3.We need to sharpen the growing class contradictions, not blunt them through misdirecting the masses into electoral channels
4.Why does capital need a reformist workers party now?
5.On the launch of the NAPFCC [National Anti-privatization Co-ordinating Committee]
6.On the Cosatu ‘ultra-lefts’ and the current direction of ANC policy discussions

12.The PT [Workers’ Party] experience in Brasil – lessons for the working class in South Africa
13.On the Brazilian PT [Partido dos Trabalhadores –Workers’ Party]
14.Electoralism and the rightward shift of the PT
15.The founding of the PSTU[Partido Socialista dos Trabahadores Unificado – United Workers Socialist Party]

16.Trotsky on the Labour party
17.On the Conduct of Communists in Parliament
19.Intsebenziswano Phakathi Kwe-ANC ne-NNP Ikwisiseko “Senkululeko” Yeli


21.The struggle in Palestine

The rightward shift of the ANC, cracks in the alliance and the possibility of a mass workers’ party [beads, home-based sweatshops and the rise of black capitalist front men/women] [12.12.01]

The middle class use the working class to achieve their own self-interests!

The ‘new’ alliance between the ANC and the NP is not surprising. They are both capitalist parties and as such have to dance to his ‘master’s voice’[the tune of the capitalist class]. There are, however, significant differences between the rise of a Black Nationalist party [the ANC] to government in 1994 and the rise of the Afrikaner nationalist party [NP] in 1948. The NP came into government at a time when the world economy was in the post world war 2 boom. Afrikaner capital was given a stake in the economy by monopoly capital [hence the rapid growth of Sanlam – still a major player in SA today]. This was the price imperialism-capitalism was prepared to pay, for the Afrikaner-led state to control the working class, for capitalist super-exploitation. The white section of the population was further co-opted to act as a bulwark of reaction to crush the black working class. Although white workers were still exploited, they were bought off by many privileges.

The white section of the population developed the highest standard of living of any group anywhere in the world. In the process the black middle classes were suppressed as well. The Afrikaner middle classes blurred the class lines as if the white working class and the middle class had the same interests. The Afrikaner middle class used the white workers as the shock troops to suppress the working class as a whole. Meanwhile the Afrikaner middle class advanced their own interests. The ANC blurred the class lines through their populism, as if the aims of the black middle class were the same as that of the black working class. The Stalinist SACP assisted then and now with this illusion, which today is encapsulated in the ANC-SACP-COSATU alliance. The Cosatu members are used as stepping stones for the advancement of the black middle class who are in the ranks of or linked to, the ANC.

The transition to ‘free capitalist relations’
The form of capitalist control in the post 1948 period was based on the suppression of the black working- and middle classes. Before 1994, virtual slave capitalist relations existed in the form of the pass laws; restrictions in freedom of movement; restrictions in the right to ownership of land and the other means of production; there were restrictions on political rights, etc. The 1994 transition was characterized by a change to free capitalist relations. These obstacles were formally removed, ie scrapped from the statute books. The driving force for change was the working class and in particular, the most oppressed section, the black working class. No longer was the black working class prepared to accept the form of control of virtual ‘slave capitalism’. The popular front ANC govt was acceptable to imperialism capitalism as the lesser evil [rather than risk losing all through a working class revolution].

The main ideologue of the so-called National Democratic Revolution (NDR) was and still is the SACP. According to them it was first necessary to complete the democratic stage and then embark on the Socialist stage [the infamous 2-stage theory proposed by Stalinism on a world scale outside of the Soviet Union]. In the first stage, according to the SACP, the working class movement should subordinate itself to the leadership of the ANC, in essence a middle class formation. The RDP went through several drafts, each time watering down the democratic aspirations of the working class until a document was finalized, that was temporarily acceptable to imperialism.

Soon after 1994, GEAR, a thoroughly pro-capitalist document, was adopted by the ANC. This did not stop the SACP from continuing their support of the ANC in every possible way. Nowhere in the world has the Stalinist 2-stage thesis ever led to the completing of the bourgeois-democratic revolution. It has always led to the counter-revolutionary capitalist forces winning the day. The NDR should mean going up against big capital [most of the best land is in the hands of the capitalist class; the housing industry is completely in the clutches of the banks and other monopolies, etc, etc] On all democratic demands however, the ANC has sided with big capital and is now steadily rolling back democratic gains of the masses. [the LRA; detention laws; privatization; etc].

The ANC and the SACP are now an obstacle to the completion of the NDR. Their perspective of deepening democracy without taking on capital is shown to be a massive fraud. The past 7 years are living proof of the validity of the thesis of permanent revolution, put forward by Trotsky. In essence it says that in colonial or semi-colonial countries, the bourgeois democratic revolution can only be completed by the working class in power. No other class is able to complete the democratic tasks. This means the shattering of the capitalist state structures and the construction of a proletarian [working class] state. To give effect to the democratic aspirations of the working class, means the state going up against capital. Only the working class in power has the political will and capability to complete the democratic tasks. By the working class taking power to itself, means that the revolution then grows over to the struggle for Socialism.

This means on the one hand, taking over the commanding heights of the economy [expropriating the capitalist class] and putting this under workers’ control. On the other it means a waging of the fight against imperialism-capitalism on a worldwide scale. This is because no economy in the world is an island. If anything, the world economy is much more interconnected than before. There can be no separate solution for the South African working class and the working classes in the rest of Southern Africa. The SA economy dominates the entire Southern African region. The fate of the working classes in Southern Africa is also interconnected with the fate of the working classes in the imperialist centres. Imperialism capitalism has kept Africa as a primary producer and exporter of raw materials and assembler of knock-down parts. There can be no Socialism on one country, let alone African solution [this theory was definitively smashed when the world Stalinist apparatus collapsed in the 1989 period].

This immediately raises the question of building a revolutionary Communist International as part of the process of building a revolutionary working class party in South Africa.

The middle class aims of the ANC is one of the factors accelerating privatization
The transition to 1994 and up until today is in fact the miracle that the capitalists constantly remind themselves of – that a revolution was aborted and bourgeois democracy imposed on the working class. In this process, the middle class aims of the ANC became more and more clear. The class role of the ANC can be summed up in GEAR, the government’s economic policy, and in the drive for ‘Black Economic Empowerment’. The ANC is the local agent for imperialism and is offered [and accepted] a stake in the running of the capitalist system. In 1948 the world economy was expanding, and on the back of the violent suppression of the working class, there was a massive investment campaign by imperialism-capitalism into South Africa.

This is how secondary industry [manufacturing] was built up and this was the context for the buying off of the white working class to play a reactionary role as the local shock troops for imperialism-capitalism. Currently, the world economy is in decline and the South African working class has not been defeated. The resource base from which to buy off a sizeable section of the population does not exist. It is this tension, which underlies the current problems in the tripartite alliance. The ANC leaders have thrown their weight 100% behind imperialism capitalism. Capitalism in decline requires ever-harsher attacks on the working class. The ANC has been careful initially in the way these attacks have been carried out as they still are greatly dependent on a working class support base. These attacks on the working class create a problem for the Cosatu leaders, who at least have to show some sort of gains to keep their positions of leadership. With the limited resources to create a black middle class, the agenda of the ANC coincides with capital to privatize state assets as speedily as possible.

This gives a stake in the system to the aspirant black bourgeois and helps capital in their crisis of falling profits, by opening up more sectors of economic life to exploitation and the profit motive. The ANC Briefing notes which labeled certain Cosatu leaders as ‘ultraleft’ is not a sign of radicalism by them, but rather an indication of how far the ANC has moved to the right that even the hardnosed Cosatu bureaucrat appears progressive! Such is the need for greed by the ANC leadership, that nothing will stand in their way to achieve their few pieces of silver. This is why the ANC in government, across all sectors, are pushing ahead with privatization, irrespective of the consequences for the working class, using the Scorpion gang against community activists and using live ammunition and the courts to achieve their ends. For achieving their aims, all opposition will be labeled as anything they can think of, yes, even ‘ultraleft’, so that self-enrichment of the black middle class can continue. The ANC realizes that it is attacking its own support base in its pro-capitalist drive and it is why they will go into alliance with any reactionary force in order to hang on to the reins of government.

This is why the ANC has formed an alliance with the NP [under whose rule countless atrocities were perpetrated] so that they can extend their support base to backward sections of the working class. This is why the ANC actively promotes tribalism and the tribal council, as this is the base from which it can hold on to the reins of government. That the ANC and NP is now in alliance is a continuation of the politics of the Codesa process and the GNU [Govt of National Unity] that agreed to keep capitalism intact. The open alliance of the ANC with the IFP [Inkatha Freedom Party] is also a reflection of the ANC leaning on a backward support base.

We need to sharpen the growing class contradictions, not blunt them through misdirecting the masses into electoral channels
Today there is no mass political opposition to the ANC. In these circumstances, the ANC has been accelerating the attacks on the working class. They have been using their ‘legitimacy’ to launch attacks on the working class that would, under the NP rule, have brought about an explosive situation. Today there is massive dissatisfaction brewing in the working class. The expectations of the ANC delivering freedom after 1994 have been greatly shattered. Illusions that parliament is the route to change, have been given a body blow. The capitalist class is facing a crisis. They still have doubts about the ANC’s capacity to effectively control the working class. They tried repression in the past and it could not hold back the working class. International experience shows that under these conditions, the capitalist class may even accept a reformist mass workers party as a means to help control the working class.

In conditions of a political vacuum, trade union bureaucrats may help the capitalists to form such a workers party. In the beginning, such a party may sound quite radical and make all the right noises, but the bottom line is that they accept capitalism and want to put forward a human face for it.So for them, neo-liberalism is bad but Keynesian capitalism is ok!! We must oppose the formation of a reformist workers party at all costs.

Any so-called workers party that does not have as part of its programme the revolutionary overthrow of the capitalist system, the shattering of the capitalist state apparatus, the nationalizing without compensation under workers control of the commanding heights of the economy, is not worth the paper its programme is written on. The full list of democratic demands of the masses should be incorporated into the programme, with the full realization that only working class power, as spelt out in this article, is the route to meeting these completely.

The route to Socialism should be spelt out clearly as only through the dictatorship of the working class. Also, the revolutionary working class party has to have a structure that is capable of leading the fight for Socialism to a successful conclusion. There are many examples internationally of how a reformist workers party has led to a rescue of capitalism. In Brasil, in the run-up to the fall of the military dictatorship, the PT, Partido dos Trabalhadores, [Workers Party] was formed. It involved several unions, community organizations, even certain sections of the church. It focused most of its work on elections and today supports privatization of certain state assets, has formed electoral alliances with capitalist parties, and in short has gone back on all its essential stated aims. It has turned the mass uprising in Brasil into the elections channel , and has neutralized the revolutionary militancy of the masses. A full article on this experience appears elsewhere in this edition of Workers International News

Why does capital need a reformist workers party now?
In 1994, the Wosa tried to launch a reformist Mass workers party. It did not get off the ground precisely because the masses still had great illusions in the ANC. Also the trade union and other leaders had no need of it then to control the masses, so they did not support it. Now that a political vacuum is opening up, some forces from within the workers movement and even from the side of capital may look to a mass workers party as the next means to maintain control.

Of course there may be groups and workers who unwittingly have fallen into the trap of supporting this initiative – it is to them that we direct this article to warn of the pending dangers of a reformist workers party. Already there are forces within the APF [Anti-Privatization Forum] who mistakenly support this notion of a mass workers party. Already, the Cosatu bureaucrats are trying their best to gain control of the APF, and if a mass workers party initiative were to take off, they would be sure to try to get control of this. The mass uprising after 1985 was betrayed by Stalinism and the ANC, we dare not let the unfolding revolution be betrayed again. We call on all working class fighters and groups to rally with us to build a revolutionary working class party and to oppose all efforts to build a reformist workers party.

On the launch of the NAPFCC [National Anti-privatization Co-ordinating Committee]
The launch of this committee, on the weekend of 30 Nov-1st December, as a united front to campaign against privatization is a great step forward. The decision to field local government candidates is a step towards channeling the energies of the masses into elections, and creating illusions in the bourgeois state structures. The message is being given that there is nothing wrong with the system. The message is that we only need to change the faces, to get some more ‘honest’ people into the seats of government. If the aim is to help unmask the system as completely anti-working class and to show that no permanent gain can come through this channel, we would then support electoral participation. This would have to be very strictly monitored, with all the necessary checks and balances, to prevent opportunist forces getting onto the gravy train at the expense of the toiling masses. Otherwise, we are opposed to electoral participation. [At the time of going to press, we still await a full report from the national APF meeting and will issue a follow up statement at a later stage]

On the Cosatu ‘ultra-lefts’ and the current direction of ANC policy discussions

For those who may suddenly think that the Cosatu leaders have turned over a new leaf, we need to look only as far as document from the Economic Transformation Committee [ETC] of the ANC, called ‘Towards an Accelerated Growth path” to see what a treacherous role they are playing. Key Cosatu leaders were integrally involved in drawing up this document. The main feature of this document is its support for capitalism. They do not challenge imperialist capitalist control and the pro-capitalist role of the leaders is offered at the price of a few empowerment crumbs. Notably the document supports the privatization of state assets; it supports as well that these assets to be palmed off in the name of Black Economic Empowerment [self-enrichment of the black middle class]; it stands for the building of capitalist infrastructure [subsidizing the growth of capitalism in a similar way as the NP did post 1948]; the building of infrastructure so that home-based industry can thrive [ghetto-based sweatshops]– of course this is put under the label of addressing the rights of women!

The making of beads etc, are elevated to industry level – the so-called cultural industry! This paper notes that high government spending to alleviate poverty is bad for investors and could scare them off!! [So let the people starve, to keep the investors happy, is their message] Restructuring means giving aspirant and emerging black capitalists a stake in the economy – in essence poverty relief, besides its safety-valve role for the excesses of capitalism, is extended to include assisting the ‘poorer’ black capitalists! They look at labour intensive industries and forget about the shortening of the working day. They are looking at no provident /pension payouts when workers get dismissed /or leave a job for another – under the nice-sounding title ‘portability’ of pension funds [in other words the capitalist will have sole right to your pension money until your day of retirement.

The capitalist drafters of the document are actually amazed at the lack of commitment of monopoly capital to beneficiate raw materials into products. They dance around and ignore the fact that imperialism capitalism controls the wealth in South Africa and that the world is divided by them into zones of production, Africa being designated the role of primary producer of raw materials. Although there is some reference to forcing measures onto capital, this only pertains to Black Economic Empowerment. For sure, this timid document would have been discussed with the captains of capital, if not carry their direct approval. Indeed, it deserves a label of GEAR part 2. It is this GEAR part 2 that carries the approval of those allegedly ‘ultraleft’. With lefties like these, who needs enemies?!

Down with a reformist mass workers’ party!
Forward to a revolutionary working class party!
Forward to the rebuilding of the Fourth International!

Issued on 12.12.01

UKUGUQUKELA NGASEKHOHLO KWE ANC, UQHEKEKO KUBUMBANO NENCAMANGO ZOKWAKHA UMBUTHO WESININZI SABASEBENZI.[Inciyo,nemveli kwakunye nokukhula kongxowa nkulu abamnyama phambili amadoda/nabafazi ?] (12.12.01)

Oongxowa nkulu abasakhulayo basebenzisa abasebenzi ukufezekisa iimfuno zabo.
Ubumbano olutsha phakathi kwe ANC kunye ne NP alothusi. Yomibini le mibutho yimibutho yobungxowa nkulu efezekisa iimfuno zoongxowankulu. Nangona kunjalo kukho umahluko omkhulu phakathi kokukhula kwamanashinali amnyama [phantsi kwe-ANC] kurhulumente ukususela ngo-1994, kunye nokukhula kwamashishini abantetho isisibhulu [phantsi kwe-NP] ukususela ngo-1948. Umahluko ukwiimeko zoqoqosho ezahlukileyo aphathe ngazo la maqela mabini. Amanashinali [NP] aphatha ngexesha umnotho wehlabathi wawukhula emva kwemfazwe yehlabathi yesibini. Imali yamabhulu yanikwa ithuba lingcutshwana longxowa nkulu nangokucinezela isininzi sabasenzi abamnyama. [Yiyo le nto uSanlam wakhula ngokukhawuleza nangoku usengoyena uphambili kwezomnotho emzantsi afrika].

Le nto yayilixabiso elalihlawulwa amabhulu ngabacinezeli. Oongxowa nkulu banika ulawulo amabhulu khon’ukuze bakwazi ukusebenzisa iindlela zobandlululo ukufezekisa iminqweno yabo yenzozo ephakame kakhulu. Abanye abantu abamhlophe baye benziwa iintsika zobungxowa nkulu ukuba baqhekeze okanye banyashe abasebenzi abamnyama. Nangona abasebenzi abamhlophe babesaxhatshazwa, baye bathengwa (ngentlalo engcono kunaleyo yabamnyama). Abanye babantu abamhlophe baye bazenzela inqanaba eliphezulu lokuphila elingazange labonwa nakweliphi na uhlanga ehlabathini ngengcinezelo eyayithewelwe ngabasebenzi ingakumbi abanyama. Kwakuyo le nqubo oongxowa nkulu abasakhulayo abamnyama babesacinezelwe nabo. Amabhulu angongxowa nkulu abakhasayo aye ayifihla into yokuba kukho iyantlukwano ngokucinezelwa phakathi kwabo kunye namabhulu angabasebenzi ngokungathi bamele iimfuno ezinye.

La mabhulu angongxowa nkulu abasakhulayo aye asebenzisa abasebenzi abamhlophe njengomkhosi owothusayo ukucinezela abasebenzi bonke. I- ANC nayo iye yayibetha ngoyaba into yokwahlulahlwa kwabantu kuba ingumbutho ofuna ukwaziwa kwihlabathi lonke, ngelithi iinjongo zongxowa nkulu abamnyama abasakhulayo ziyafana nezabasebenzi abamnyama. UbuStalini be SACP buye bancedisa ukuqinisa laa mampunge, nangoku basenemibono engekhoyo. La mampunge namhlanje aqiniswa ngembumba ye ANC/SACP/COSATU. Amalungu e-Cosatu asetyenziswa njengamanqwanqwa anyusa iinkokheli ze-COSATU azise empumelelweni yobungxowankulu.


Indlela yolawulo yango 1948 yayisekelezwe ekubeni kucinezelwe elinye icandelo labasebenzi (abamnyama) kunye noongxowa nkulu abamnyama abasakhulayo. Utshitsho lwango-1994 lwalusekelezwe ekubeni ubongxowa nkulu benziwe mahala ngaphandle kokuphazanyiswa. Ukucalucalulwa kwabantu ngokwebala kwasuswa ezincwadini zikarhulumente. Abantu abaza notshintsho ngabasebenzi ngakumbi abamnyama. Abasebenzi abamnyama abasokuze bavume nayo nayiphi indlela yokukhotyozwa bexhatshazwa ngoongxowa nkulu. Lo mbutho wodumo i-ANC wamkelwe ngongxowa nkulu njengo Sathana omncinci. Oongxowa baqonda ukuba babeseluncuphekweni lokulahlekelwa konke ngokwemizabalazo yabasebenzi yovukelo lwabasebenzi. Iindleko zokunikezela ulawulo kwi-ANC zabancane kakhulu kunezo zokuphulukana nento yonke kurhulumente oyakulawula ngokweemfuno zabasebenzi (nabantu bonke abangenamfuno zobungxowankulu).


Utshintsho lwango 1994 ukuza ngoku lwaba yimilingo yenene eyabangela ukuba oongxowankulu bazingombe izifuba bencumele ecaleni. Oku kumangaliswa koongxowankulu kukumiswa komzabalazoowawungqale ekubhukuqeni ubungxowankulu. Kuyo le nqubo iinjongo zokukhusela oongxowa nkulu yi -ANC zaye zicaca ngokucaca. Ukukhulisa oongxowankulu yi-ANC kucaca kwinqubo yabo yezoqoqosho [i-Gear] kwakunye nokuqhubela phambili kophuhliso lwezoqoqosho lwegcuntswana lwabamnyama. I-ANC sisithunywa sabacinezeli bama-imperiyali kule ngigqi yamaZantsi e-Afrika. Ngo-1948 ubutyebi behlabathi banda emva kokwenziwa kobundlobongela bokucinezela abasebenzi. Oongxowankulu abangama-imperiyali babenomkhankaso wokutyala izimali ngeqondo eliphezulu emZantsi Afrika nanjengoko yayilithala lengcinezelo. Kulapho kwatsho kwenziwa inqanaba eliphezulu lamashishini kusenzelwa ukuthenga abasebenzi abamhlophe ukuba bavukele abanye abasebenzi bezenza amajoni abumini wongxowa nkulu.

Ngoku sithetha nje uqoqosho lwehlabathi luyehla kwaye abasebenzi basemZantsi Afrika abakathezwa mandla. Izixhobo zokuthenga icandelo elikhulu labantu abamnyama azikho. Yile meko yenza kubekho iingxaki kolu bumbano lwe ANC/ SACP/ Cosatu. Ubungxowankulu buyaphelelwa yiyo le nto bufuna ukuhlasela ngamandla abasebenzi. I-ANC iqiqile iyazi ngoluhlaselo kubasebenzi lwenza iingxaki kwiinkokheli zika Cosatu, zona zifuna inzuzo ukwenzela zigcine izihlalo zazo. Ngezixhobo ezincinci zokwenza oongxowankulu abasakhulayo abamnyama, phofu izinjongo ze-ANC idibene noongxowa nkulu ukuba banikeze ngamashishini ezinto zikarhulumente kongxowa nkulu ngokukhawuleza okudibene nokungxama.

Le nto ibangele urhulumente wobungxowankulu wanethemba koongxowa nkulu abamnyama ukuhlangula ongxowa nkulu kwingxaki yokuhla kwengeniso, ngokuthi bavule amanye amacandelo ezoqoqosho bencikiva befumana ingeniso ephezulu. I-ANC kwintshwankathelo zengxelo yayo iye yatyibela ezinye iinkokheli njengabantu abangasekhohlo kwasekhohlo, lo nto ayiyombonakaliso yokuba i-ANC iqinisa iintambo, koko ibonakalisa indlela ethe i-ANC yanxaxhela ekunene, nangona kukho ingxolo koozwilakhe be-Cosatu bezenza abantu abamele abasebenzi. Ukunyoluka kwe ANC kubonisa ukuba akukho nto iyakuma phambi kwayo xa ifuna amaqithi qithi esilivere. Yiyo le nto i-ANC kumacandelo onke aseburhulumenteni inyanzelisa ukuthengiswa kwamashishini, ingakhathali ngeziphumo zoko kubasebenzi, besebenzisa imigulukudu yeqela loonomadukudwane (Scorpion) kwiintshukumo zabahlali bekwasebenzisa nembumbulu kunye nenkudla ukufezekisa iminqweno yabo. Ukufezekisa ezi njongo, bonke abaphikisana nabo bakubizwa nayo nayiphi into engamnkelekanga. Ewe sitsho nokuba basuka ngasekunene kwasekunene ukwenzela ukuzityebisa kwabo kuqhubekeke.

I ANC iye yabona ukuba ihlasela abaxhasi bayo kule nqubo yayo yobungxowa nkulu, yiyo le nto iye yabona ukuba iyakwenza ubudlelwane nawo nawuphi umbutho wontamo nkulu ukwenzela ihlale ilawula. Yiyo ke le nto yenze ubudlelwane namanashinali(NNP). Phantsi kolawulo lwamanashinali kwakhuthazwa ukubulawa kwabantu abaninzi Isenzela inxaso yayo yande ikwasebenzisa abantu abanengqondo zobuhlanga bamasiko (tribalism). Yiyo le nto i-ANC yakhuthaza ingqondo zobuhlanga ngokwamasiko (tribalism) kunye nezibonda , isenzela ukugcina inxaso yayo kurhulumente ilawula. Ukubona i ANC kunye ne-NNP zinobudlelwane kukuqhubekeka nopolitiko olasekwa kwinqubo ye CODESA kunye nenqubo yorhulumente wobumbwano(GNU) apho kwavunyelwana ngokugcina ubungxowankulu bulawula. Ubudlelwana obuphandle phakathi kwe-ANC kunye ne-IFP bubonisa ukuba i ANC isikhokelela emva apho ifuna inxaso kubantu abanengqondo zobumveli.


Namhlanje akukho mbutho osisininzi ophikisana ne-ANC. Kwezimeko i-ANC ithe gqolo ukuhlasela abasebenzi nabantu abasokolayo. Basebenzisa ubungangamsha nokuboniswa kwabasebenzi ezopolitiko ngokobuhlanga behlasela abasebenzi. Olu hlaselo belungenakuqhubeka ngaphandle kovukelo phantsi kwe-NP. Namhlanje kukho ukunganeliseki okuninzi okukhulayo kubasebenzi. Izithembiso ze ANC zango 1994 zokukhulula abantu zinyamalele. Amathemba okuba ipalamente yindlela eya enkululekweni aye aphelela emoyeni. Oongxowa nkulu bajongene nengxaki.

Abakathembi ukuba i ANC ngokwenene izakubalawula abasebenzi ngaphandle kovukelo na abasebenzi. Bazamile ingcinezelo kumaxesha adlulileyo, iye ayaphumelela kubasebenzi. Ulwazi kwihlabathi liphela lubonakalisa ukuba phantsi kwezi meko, oongxowankulu bangathi baxolele ukuvuma umbutho kawonke-wonke wabasebenzi (Mass Wlekers Party) ozakuza neenguqwana njengesixhobo esizakunceda ukulawula abasebenzi. Kwezi meko apho ezopolitiko zivuleleke khona , iinkokheli ezithanda izihlalo zeenyunani (unions) zingathi zincede oongxowankulu ekwakhiweni lo mbutho unguginya zonke wabasebenzi.

Ekuqaleni lo mbutho ungavakala ingathi ngamatshantliziyo, benze yonke ingxolo elungileyo kubasebenzi, kodwa isiphelo bayabuxhasa ubungxowankulu baphinde babeke ubuntu phambili kubo. Bathi ngoko ke kuba lemeko intsha yenkululeko imbi kodwa ubungxowa nkulu base Keynesian bulungile. Umbutho wabasebenzi olwela ukulungelanisa ukubngxowankulu kufuneka ugatyiwe ngazo zonke iindlela. Nayo nayiphi i-party ezibiza ngokuba imele abasebenzi, ingenayo inqubo yokubhukuqa ubungxowankulu, kuthathwe amashishini abe phantsi kwaba sebenzi ngaphandle kwembuyekezo (kuba ngabo abakha uqoqosho) kufuneka iliwe isaqala ukusekwa.

Lo nto ayithethwa nje kufuneka ibengumgaqo obhalwe phantsi. Indlela eya kubusoshiyali kufuneka ubonakaliswe ngokucacileyo, ngokuthi ibe ngabasebenzi abakhokelayo ngobuzwi labo basebenzi. Kwakhona ngaphandle kwentetho ezinambithekayo, i party ezabalazayo yabasebenzi kufuneka ibenequmrhu elinokuthi likwazi ukukhokela umlo wokuya kubusoshiyali ngempumelelo ekugqibeleni.

Mininzi imizekelo ehlabathini ebonakalisa indlela ipati yeenguqu kawonke wonke yabasebenzi eyathi yakhokelela ekuncedeni ubungxowa nkulu. Phaya e-Brazil ngelixa kusiwa ubuzwilakhe bomkhosi umbutho, ubutho ekuthiwa yi-PT (Partid dos Trabalhadores) umbutho wabasebenzi waye wokhiwa. Phakathi kuwo kwaye kukho iimanyano ezininzi [unions], imibutho yokuhlala, kwakunye namanye amacandelo ecawa. Yaye ke le pati yaqwalasela kulonyulo kwaye sithetha nje namhlanje ixhasa ukuthengiswa kwamanye amashishini karhulumente koongxowa nkulu, yaphinda yenza ubudlelwane bolonyulo kunye nemibutho yongxowa nkulu yaphinda ngexesha elifutshane yabuyela kwenjongo zokwakha urhulumente.

Yathibaza umzabalazo wabesebenzi abaninzi yawenza indlela eya elonyulweni, yakugqiba yawubetha ngoyaba umsindo wabantu. Ingxelo egcweleyo malunga nala mava ifumaneka kwalapha kule ncwadi yendaba ze-Workers International (WI News).


Ngo 1994 i-Wosa yazama ukumilisela umbutho wesininzi sabasebenzi. Zange ihoywe sisininzi sabasebenzi kuba sasisenethemba elikhulu kwi ANC. Kwakunye nemanyano(unions) nezinye iinkokheli zange ziyikhathalele lembono kuba zingekayiboni imfuneko yokulawula isininzi ngombutho ofana nalowo. Kuba ngoku ezopolitiko zivulelekile, ezinye iinkokheli zemibutho yabasebenzi zingakwicala loongxowa nkulu bakujonga umbutho womxukuxela wabasebenzi iyenye yendlela yokungcina ulawulo kubasebenzi. Ewe kukho indibanisela kunye nabasebenzi abayakuthi ngokungazi bangene kulo mgibe baxhase le mbono. Sibhalela bona sibalumkisa ngobungozi obukhoyo balombutho wabasebenzi wokulungelelanisa ubungxowankulu ucetywayo.

Nangoku kukho imimoya phakathi kwi- APF[Anti Privatisation Forum] ethe ngempazamo yaxhasa oku kwakhiwa kweqela eliwola konke labasebenzi. Nangoku iinkokheli ze-Cosatu bazama kangangoko banakho ukufumana ulawulo lwe- APF, ukwenzela ukuba lo mbutho babenokukwazi ukuwulawula. Uqhanqalazo lwango 1985 lwangcatshwa ngobu-Stalini kunye ne-ANC, sikholo oko kulo mzabalazo ukuba ungangcatshwa kwakhona. Sibiza abasebenzi abalwayo kwakunye nendibanisela ukuba sibebanye nilwe nathi sakhe i party yomzabalazo yabasebenzi sigatye yonke imizamo yokwakha i party yotshitsho ngegama labasebenzi.


Ukwakhiwa kwale komiti ngempela-veki yange 30 November - 1 December 2001 njenge ndlela eyaphambili emanyaneyo kukhankaso lokulwa ukuthengiswa kwamashishini kongxowa nkulu yaba linyathelo eliya phambili. Isigqibo sokumanya kulo nyulo lorhulumente benginqi nezibonda linyathelo eliphelisa amandla esininzi kulonyulo, kuze kwakhiwe amanye amathemba kuburhulumente bobungxowa nkulu nezixhobo zabo. Umyalezo onikwayo ngowokuba akukho nto imbi kulemeko kulawulwa ngayo. Umyalezo uthi sifuna ukuguqula ubuso sifumane abantu abathembekileyo kurhulumente. Ukuba iinjongo kukuveza urhulumente ukuba ulwa abasebenzi kwaye ezi njongo zibonakalisa ukuba akukho ngeniso enokufunyanwa ngezi zigqibo, sakuthi sikuxhase ukuthatha inxaxheba kulonyulo.

Lo nto iyakufuna ukujongwa ngeliso elibukhali, ngazo zonke iindlela umoya wozungulichele ingangeni kulo loliwe unomhluzi (gravy train) ngaphantsi kwendleko zabasebenzi. [Ngelilixa sishicilelayo sisalinde ingxelo egcweleyo kwi-APF kazwe lonke ebinomhlangano, sakuthi sikhuphe enye intetha elandela le kungekudala]


Kwaba bacinga ukuba ngokukhawuleza iinkokheli zika Cosatu zityhile kwelinye igqabi, sifuna nijonge kuphela kumqulu onge-Economic Transformation Committee [ETC]. Ikomiti yokuguqula uqoqosho ye- ANC, apho kuthethwa ngendlela eya ekukhuliseni uqoqosho, nijonge indlela engathembekanga abayidlalayo. Iinkokheli zika-Cosatu ezaziwayo ziye zafakwa ekwakhiweni kwalo mqulu. Oyena ndoqo walomqulu kukuxhasa ubungxowa nkulu. Awulwi ulawulo lwengcinezelo yobungxowa nkulu kunye nobungxowankulu obucacileyo beenkokheli obuthengwe ngexabiso elihlawulwe kwabambalwa abamnyama kuthiwa bayaphuhliswa. Ngokucacileyo lo mqulu uxhasa ukuthengiswa kwenkampani eziphantsi kukarhulumente, uxhasa ngakumbi ukuba ezi nkampani zithengiswe egameni lophuhliso lwabantu abamnyama [ indlela ephucukileyo yokuzityebisa] lo mqulu umele ukwakhiwa kophuhliso lobungxowankulu. [Oku kukuhlumisa ubungxowankulu ngendlela efana nqwa neye-NP emva komnyaka ka 1948].

Nangona oku kusenziwa kusithiwa kukhuselwa amalungelo abantu besifazane. Ukwenziwa kwe tsimbi, nobuyokoyoko njalo njalo kuhambisana nomgaqo woqoqosho ekuthiwa luqoqosho lwemveli. Lo mqulu uthi ukusetyenziswa kwemali ngurhulumente ukuzama ukulwa ubuhlwempu akulungelananga nokurhwebesha abatyali zimali kweli. [Ngoko ke mabayekwe abantu basokole, ukugcina abatyali zimali bonwabile, lowo ngumyalezo wal mqulu watyikitywa zezikokheli]. Ukwakha ngokutsha kuthetha ukuqhathwa kunye nokukhula kongxowa nkulu abamnyama bafumane intwana enqatheni lamaqithiqithi ezoqoqosho - phantsi kobuxoki bokupheliswa kobuhlwempu, kuxokwa ezona njongo ikukuya kubungxowa nkulu, yandiswa le nqubo kuncedwa kufakwa oongxowankulu abamnyama abasakhulayo. Baye bajonga ukucinezela abasebenzi balibala ngokucutha iintsuku zokusebenza. Abajonganga kwi Provident Fund kunye nokubhatalwa kwendodla (pension) xa abasebenzi begxothwa okanye beyeka ukusebenza besiya kweminye imisebenzi – le nto bayibiza ngamagama amnandi [Portability of pension fund] ithetha ukuthi ungxowa nkulu bakubanelungelo kwimali yakho yendodla ude uyeke ukusebenza.Oongxowa nkulu abaye babhala lo mqulu baye bothuka ngokungabikho kuzinekezela koongxowa abazimeleyo ukuguqula imveliso ephuma kwindalo ibe yimveliso esetyenziweyo enelutho.

Baye badanisa dawonye bayilibala ecaleni inyani yokuba bubungxowankulu obu bulawula ubutyebi bomZantsi Afrika kwaye ihlabathi lahlulwe ngabo ngokwe nqila zokwenza ubutyebi, i-Afrika isetyenziswa njengedawo ezakuthi ivelise ubutyebi bendalo ukuxhasa amanye amazwe. Nangona zikhona iziphakamiso zokulwa ubungxowa, yonke lo nto idodobaliswe yile ntetha intsha yokuphuhlisa oongxowankulu abamnyama [ukuzityebisa]. Ngokucacileyo lo mqulu ubukhe waxoxwa nookapteyini boongxowankulu, ukuba akuziswanga into evela kubo ngqo. Ngeliphandle ufana ne-Gear yesibini. Yile Gear yesibini exhaswe ngabo babizwa ngokuba ngabasekhohlo kwasekhohlo.

Phambil ngomzabalazo kwakunye nokwakhiwa kwe party yabasebenzi ezabalazela ukulwa ubungxowankulu

The PT [Workers’ Party] experience in Brasil – lessons for the working class in South Africa

It is necessary to write this article as there appears to be a trend among some Socialist groupings to be promoting a PT-type party for South Africa. We think this will be a big mistake as it will give reformism a new lease of life at a time when the class contradictions are sharpening. It will sidetrack the rising revolutionary tide into a dead-end.

Let us first look at what are the basic principles of a Marxist revolutionary party.

These are:
1. [Trotsky: The Labour party Question in the USA, 1932] “That a Marxist, a proletarian revolutionist, cannot present himself before the working class with 2 banners. He cannot say at a workers’ meeting ‘I have a ticket for a first class party, and a cheaper ticket for the backward workers.’ If I’m a Communist then I must fight for a Communist Party.”

2. A revolutionary workers party is a Marxist party based on a definite programme, whose aim is the organization of the working class in the struggle for power, and the transformation of the existing social order. All its activities, it methods and internal regime are subordinated to this aim and are designed to serve it.

3. The struggle for power organized and led by the revolutionary party is the most ruthless and irreconcilable struggle in all of history. A loosely knit, heterogenous, undisciplined, untrained organization is utterly incapable of accomplishing such world historical tasks as the proletariat and the revolutionary party are confronted with in the present era. Should the workers take power in South Africa, the SADC armies will not stand by and twiddle their thumbs [as the working class in Lesotho found out in 1998], neither will the US military bases in Botswana be sending their warmest greetings!!

4. Leadership and centralized direction are indispensable for any sustained and disciplined action, especially in the party that sets for itself the aim of leading the collective efforts of the working class, in its struggle against capitalism.

5. Membership to the revolutionary workers’ party implies
a) the total acceptance of the party’s programme
b) actively participating in the party organization
c) fulfilling all the tasks the party assigns to each member
d) contributing materially to support the organization in accordance with his or her means.
It follows from the above that the party seeks to include in its ranks all the revolutionary class conscious and militant workers who stand on its programme and are active in building the Movement in a disciplined manner.

6. The all-inclusiveness principle that allows sympathizers and fellow travelers to become party members must be rejected. This all-inclusiveness principle paralyses the party and blunts its revolutionary thrust. At this stage, allowing all-comers means adapting to the average and would undermine the crucial role of the party in raising the Socialist consciousness of the working class.

7. To build a combat organization capable of leading the conquest of state power, the party must have as its general staff a core of professional revolutionaries who devote their entire lives to the direction and building of the party, and its influence in the mass movement.

8. The working class is the only class in modern society that is progressive and truly revolutionary; a truly revolutionary party can lead the proletariat to victory only if it is deeply rooted among the workers. It must be composed predominantly of workers and enjoy the respect and confidence of the workers. A party of non-workers, or that is dominated by bourgeois or even middle class elements is subject to all the reactionary influences of suspicion, cynicism and capitulatory despair transmitted to it through its middle class environment and perspective.

9. A revolutionary party must make a concerted, determined and systematic effort, consciously directed by the leadership of the party to penetrate the workers movement, establish the roots of the party in the trade unions, the mass labour organizations and in the workers’ residential areas, and recruit worker militants into the ranks of the party.

10. Militancy alone will not topple capitalism. The advance layers of the working class must become conscious of the irreconcilable antagonisms between capital and labour, and the resolution of this conflict could only be achieved by the overthrow of the state, the destruction of the capitalist system; and thereby laying the basis for a new social order- Socialism.

11. The integration of the revolutionary Party into the workers movement is indispensable for the progress of the party; such integration can be accomplished by adjusting party campaigns to engage the demands and direction of the workers movement. We define the working class movement as the organized self-activity of the working class to improve its conditions of life under capitalism-imperialism. Hence civic organizations fighting to improve facilities such as housing, roads, transport, electricity, etc in the various working class areas; hence the demands by local sports clubs for better facilities, etc. The revolutionary party will be at the forefront of the fight to achieve these various demands, at the same time, propagating to the working class that real equality, real change, a real rise in the standard of living, that real security for themselves and their families cannot be achieved within the context of the capitalist system; and the crushing of the capitalist state is a precondition without which freedom of the working class from poverty and drudgery is impossible. Thus, every agitation and every intervention must at all times include this ultimate objective.

12. Any revolutionary working class party has to be internationalist in the sense that the fate of the working classes across the world is inter-connected and the struggle for Socialism is international. Every revolutionary working class party has to have, therefore, as its perspective the building or becoming part of a revolutionary international. This means learning from all the mistakes of the past attempts and we believe that this should lead us in the direction of rebuilding the Fourth International.

On the Brazilian PT [Partido dos Trabalhadores –Workers’ Party]
In 1964 the army in Brasil, on behalf of the local capitalist class, and assisted by US imperialism, carried out a military coup. The military dictatorship smashed the workers’ movement. The PCB [Brazilian Communist Party], then the main political organization with support in the workers’ movement, did not fight the military dictatorship and abandoned thousands who wanted to do so. The PCB split and went into decline. There was a rapid period of industrialization from 1969-1973. During this period 5 auto companies opened up production plants near Sao Paulo in a region called the ABC region.

Here a new highly concentrated proletariat developed. In 1977 a student movement appeared and their protests prepared the way for the rebirth of the workers’ movement. In 1978 the workers at Scania in the ABC region went on strike. This was the first significant strike since 1968 and marked the beginning of the end of the military dictatorship. A wave of strikes followed, much like the 1973 strikes in Durban.

From 1978-1980 about 3 million workers went on strike throughout Brasil, led by the 170 000 metalworkers from the ABC region. There was a sustained period of strikes and protests up to 1989 when 18 million workers were on strike. It was this level of mobilization that brought an end to the military dictatorship. Workers also rose to purge the unions of the pro-boss leaders, many who had been installed by the military regime.

The birth of the PT
A Trotskyist organization, the Convergencia Socialista, an affiliate of the International Workers League [or LIT – Liga Internacional dos Trabalhadores] was the first to make a proposal for the formation of a Labour party or Workers’ party, raising the slogan of a party without bourgeois elements.

The LIT members first publicly presented their proposal in the Metalworkers Congress in Sao Paulo state in March 1979. At that time the Social Democrats, including the person who is today the President of Brasil, Fernando Henrique Cardoso, were trying to attract worker leaders like Lula [who today heads the PT] to form a popular party. Under pressure from the vanguard workers, Lula and other worker leaders rejected the popular party and opted for building the Workers Party, the PT. Lula and leaders like him took the initiative to form the PT uniting workers’ groups of Marxists and even currents from the Catholic church [such as Liberation Theology]. The first slogan of the PT was ‘a workers’ party without bosses’.

The programme and social composition of the party was always in contradiction with the leadership of the party, whose majority was composed of the Lula current under the powerful influence of the Catholic Church. This current always had a class-collaborationist approach- ie it was a middle class current. For the time being, the leadership yielded to the radicalized base of the party. The Marxist groups had about 20% support of the PT in Sao Paulo. Lula formed the internal tendency called the Articulation to consolidate the reformist influence and to counter the Marxists. The Articulation tendency still dominates the PT and the Brasilian union movement today. Tendencies were allowed to be formed within the PT, even allowing each to openly publicise their positions and differences with the main position of the party. Tendencies were even allowed to have their own newspapers and the leadership of the party was based on proportional support for each tendency.

The new trade union movement, CUT [Unitary Centre of Workers], that arose in the fight against the dictatorship, has a structure which reflected the inner structure of the PT- workers are not represented at Congress or in leadership, based on industrial sector, but based on the political tendency that they represent and the support that they have among the workers in the union. Each tendency is freely allowed to circulate and publicise their positions, even in the form of newspapers.

Electoralism and the rightward shift of the PT
The PT stood for elections in 1982 and received 7% of the vote in Sao Paulo, averaging 3% in the country as a whole. As the years went by, the electoral support for the PT grew. In 1984, the PT directed working class anger against the military dictatorship into electoral channels and called for direct elections. Huge demonstrations took place, numbering about 1 million in Rio de Janeiro and 1 ½ million in Sao Paulo city. In 1986 the PT increased their number of federal deputies from 8 to 16.

By 1988 the PT had 36 mayors, including the largest city in the country, Sao Paulo. In 1989 Lula stood for President, gaining 18% of the vote in the first round, ie 11,6 million. In the second round, Lula gained 31 million votes, just less than half those who voted. At the same period there was the biggest strike that Brasil had ever seen, involving about 18 million strikers. The PT had successfully channeled workers frustrations into bourgeois elections sidetracking the working class from a revolutionary path. Instead of calling for workers’ councils / soviets to be set up and calling for the working class to take power into its own hands, the revolutionary path was missed. At this crucial stage, the LIT group promoted the calling of immediate elections, thus also bowing to electoralism.

From the start, the PT programme was developing to the right. As soon as the revolutionary tide had ebbed, the rightward shift was more rapid. Together with the fall of Stalinism in 1989-1990, the PT programme underwent a dramatic further change. At its Congress in 1991, the PT abandoned the perspective of revolutionary change. From then up to now, the PT has moved more openly closer to the bourgeoisie/capitalist class. In the 1998 elections, against the will of their own membership, they formed electoral alliances with bourgeois parties. Among other states, the PT attained governorship in Brasilia state, where the capital is situated. The policy they applied there was a capitalist one. The policy of the PT is nothing but a different version of flexibility, privatization and other capitalist policies.

The founding of the PSTU[Partido Socialista dos Trabahadores Unificado – United Workers Socialist Party]
In 1992, when there was a mass movement for the impeachment of the President Collor de Mello, the Convergencia Socialista[CS] tendency was expelled from the PT. The PT line was to defend the law and the electoral calendar, whereas the CS was supporting the immediate removal of Collor. The CS supported immediate removal of the President and immediate elections, thus bowing to electoralism.

About 40 other groups also left the PT at the time and they united with the CS to form the PSTU in 1994. Today the PSTU is the Brasilian section of the LIT. In the build-up to the 1998 elections, the PSTU promoted a vote for Lula [head of the PT] for President and a Vice President from the landless peasants [MST]. When the PT did not break with the bourgeois parties, the PSTU put up their own candidate for Presidency. The PSTU was calling for a return to the original programme of the PT and of the CUT [the new union federation founded in 1983 -similar to Cosatu in South Africa]. In other words, the PSTU was calling for a step back instead of drawing the lessons and calling for a step forward.

Trotsky on the Labour party
We do not believe that Trotsky changed his mind on the Labour Party in the 1938 discussions with comrades from the American SWP[Socialist Workers Party]. Whereas in the USA at the time there was a movement in the masses for the formation of a Labour Party, there is no such movement in South Africa today.

Further, in 1938, when there was such a movement in the USA, Trotsky was at pains to point out that in all circumstances, whether this party has a loose structure, or is centralized, or ultimately becomes a centralized revolutionary party, our revolutionary programme, organizational principles and tactics remain intact. That is, Trotsky argued that in the case where the Labour Party has a loose structure and allows us to be members as a group, with our programme and the space to fight to convince others of the correctness of it, then we could be part of such a party.

But if the Labour party is highly centralised and does not allow us to operate as a group within it, then we have to maintain our formation with its organizational principles and programme outside of the Labour Party, while considering sending some members into Party to fight for the adoption of our programme and organizational principles. In both the above cases, if the Labour Party adopts our programme and organizational principles then we could dissolve our group into the new party. At no stage can we compromise on our programme and organizational principles! We are our progamme and organisational principles!

We do not know enough about the programme of the CS in the PT to make a definitive comment on this. If there had been a movement in the working class for a Labour Party then this would have justified the CS joining the PT. But if there was no such movement, and the CS initiated the PT, then they were party to creating an obstacle in the path of the Brasilian revolution. Revolutions are not about once-off uprisings but the raising of Socialist consciousness requires a crucial and painstaking period of preparation of the working class.

This means fighting as an active minority, side by side with the masses, to raise their consciousness. Crucial in the preparatory stage is the posing of transitional demands. [Demands which are based on the current struggles, but which lead the workers to realizing that their fight has to go beyond capitalism in order to succeed]. We do not know enough of the Brasilian history to know what these should have been or should be now. This aspect should form part of future work and we welcome contributions in this regard.

To propose a PT-type party for South Africa means proposing a watered down, reformist programme and abandonment of revolutionary organizational principles. Are the workers mostly following the politics of the bourgeoisie? NO. In Zimbabwe, the MDC, has taken root, unfortunately with the support of the ISOZ. [The MDC is not even a workers party but a bourgeois party based on the unions] These developments in Zimbabwe show the relative immaturity of the working class there as compared with South Africa. The rejection of the Workers List Party is also a reflection of the level of maturity of the working class in South Africa.

There is a deep tradition of the Communist movement, even though it was stalinised. The building of a revolutionary party in South Africa has a real chance to develop. The rise to government of a Popular Front led by the ANC, shows the contradiction that the capitalist class faces. The ANC had to pose as if they could meet the needs of the masses. The ANC has not delivered and in fact cannot deliver. The preparedness of the masses to invade land such as Bredell both shows the desperation of the masses and the extent to which the working class is prepared to go. The fact that less than 50% of the electorate takes part in elections reflects that to a great extent illusions of the masses in parliament have been shattered. The confirmation by the courts, such as evicting the Bredell land occupiers and upholding the dismissals of the 1386 VWSA dismissed workers, show day by day to the working class the true role of the courts as the defenders of monopoly capitalism-imperialism. The masses are looking for a way out.

There is no mass alternative at the moment. Let us not underestimate the impact of a class line, posing transitional demands and of a revolutionary pole under the current conditions of huge dissatisfaction of the masses with the ANC in government. Our orientation should be to the struggle of the masses and not to create an electoral vehicle. A PT-type party will not only give a lifeline to the reformists but also to capital to gain a new form of control! We hereby put the challenge to all working class fighters to join hands with WIVL to build a revolutionary working class party.

This is our urgent task. With the ANC rapidly sharpening the tools of violent suppression , like the Scorpions, a return to detention without trial, etc, history will judge us harshly if we fail to rise to the occasion. The future is Socialism, let us build the revolutionary working class party.

On the Conduct of Communists in Parliament
Communists do take up positions in the capitalist parliamentary structures for one and only one reason: to facilitate the destruction of the capitalist system. We read this in the relevant thesis of the Third International while it was still under the leadership of communists such as Trotsky and Lenin.

Firstly, the communists that take up the position in parliament must sign an oath in public that his/her parliamentary income must go to the account of the party. The party will then pay him/her an income that is equivalent to that of the average income of a skilled worker. The rest of the income shall be put to the struggle of the working class. This is a strong principle of communists to stop people using parliament to enrich themselves as it happens in capitalist parties such as the ANC and SACP.

Communists do not separate the revolutionary work of their party from their work in parliament. They use their position in parliament to undermine the very system that parliament is set up serve ie capitalism. They put forward the struggle of the working class above their parliamentary work. No communists shall carry forward the programme of the capitalist class but the working class programme.

The communist in parliament shall conduct himself /herself in the same revolutionary manner he/she was conducting himself/herself outside parliament. The revolutionary in parliament obeys no parliamentary code of conduct but the programme of the revolutionary party. All in all, the revolutionary communist in parliament undermines both parliament and capitalism. For this he stands to be dismissed from parliament according to the balance of forces between the working class and capitalist class. To be dismissed in parliament reflects the impact of the revolutionary work of a communist in parliament and is nothing bad. It is nothing bad for communists to enter parliament without illusions that they will be able to free the working class through parliamentary work but on the contrary, freedom will only come through a fight against parliament. Parliament is reactionary not revolutionary in its very establishment.

In fact, communists do not take up positions in parliament when the working class is ready to revolt. Instead of devoting their time parliamentary chambers they devote it to the struggle of the working class in the revolutionary struggle outside. So the joining of parliament is not always a given option for the communists, they join only when the working class is not in the revolutionary motion. But, in any event, Communists never become cabinet ministers, because this means having to carry out capitalist policies.

Let us judge the conduct of the SACP leaders in parliament against the above communist principles in parliament. Firstly, Jeff Radebe should not have accepted a cabinet position, let alone have carried forward the programme of privatisation as stipulated by capitalist GEAR. From the ranks of parliament he should have mobilized for nationalization under workers control all the major sectors of the economy as a basis for meeting the needs of the working class and poor in general. This would start to lay the basis for a socialist society.

That will take the working class forward as opposed to being taken back through privatisation. He should have mobilized against parliament when GEAR was adopted.
This means that Fraser Moleketsi should have mobilized in parliament in her seven years for the scaling down of the wages of the state bureaucrats and MP’s to that of skilled workers and have fought for increasing the poverty wages of the public sector workers. On every issue she should have stood unambiguously with the workers and against the capitalists.
It means Shepherd Mdladlana should have fought for all unemployed workers to get a living unemployment benefit and all workers must get a living wage while working. This will be carrying forward the mandate of the working class that elected them. Of course under the present conditions real communists would have been dismissed from parliament for siding with the working class. But that is the cost of revolutionary work in any capitalist parliament.

[Most of this article has been taken from Workers Power Global newswire, with amendments by WIVL – thus we take sole responsibility for its political line]

Mumia Abu-Jamal's supporters mobilised worldwide to rally for Mumia on the weekend of December 7-9, the 20th anniversary of the incident that led to his frame-up.

Student walkouts were planned for Friday, December 7. A mass protest was planned in Philadelphia on Saturday, December 8, which resulted in mass police brutality against protesters.

On 8-9 December, marches, protests, and teach-ins took place in cities around the world.

On 21 November, Philadelphia State Judge Pamela Dembe rejected death row political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal's appeal to have new evidence heard in state court.

That new evidence includes the confession of Arnold Beverly to killing Officer Faulkner, the crime Mumia has been framed for committing. While this is a major blow to Mumia's legal battle, it is not his final appeal. Mumia's case is still in Federal Court before Judge Yohn.

This was an attempt by Mumia's legal team to bring the case back into a state court to hear new evidence. The case has yet to be decided in Federal Court. A decision by Judge Yohn in Federal Court for execution would be Mumia's final legal appeal.

The US government's attempt to murder Mumia Abu-Jamal in 1995 was halted by mass protests and international support, stopping his execution within days of it being scheduled to take place. Continued support in the streets will be necessary to keep Mumia alive and free him.

As a freelance journalist Mumia, exposed the murderous police brutality and political repression against the MOVE organization in Philadelphia. That murderous repression was then directed at Mumia Abu-Jamal in 1981.

The frame-up trial twenty years ago included the testimony of three eyewitnesses (Veronica Jones, William Singletary, and Robert Chobert) who later said they were threatened, coerced, or made promises by the police to get them to give false testimony against Mumia.

False evidence against Mumia also included a supposed confession to the police the night he was arrested. The original police report by Officer Gary Wakshul who was with Mumia the entire time through his arrest and medical treatment stated, "during this time the Negro male made no comment."

Yet Gary Wakshul testified at Mumia's trial that he heard Mumia confess that night. Gary Wakshul didn't "remember" this confession until almost three months after Mumia's arrest when prosecutor McGill met with police asking for a confession.

Officer Wakshul absurdly stated that he didn't think the confession was important at the time he wrote his original report.

On 17 August, Mumia was not even allowed into his own hearing in State Court on the incredible excuse that there was no room for him to be transferred to a Philadelphia jail where the hearing was taking place.

Mumia's exile from his own hearing was reminiscent of 20 years ago, when he was barred from attending his own trial. At that time he was convicted in his absence.

Judge Albert Sabo claimed that Mumia was barred for being disruptive. Yet court records have now revealed that Sabo barred Mumia from his own trial at the request of Mumia's incompetent and now disbarred defense attorney, Anthony Jackson. The court appointed attorney made his request on the grounds that Mumia was about to fire him and would if Mumia wasn't barred from the trial.

Sabo's granting of Jackson's request was a clear violation of Mumia's right to legal representation of his choice and of his right to be present at his own trial.

This past May, Mumia's attorneys dropped a legal bombshell by submitting into court a sworn affidavit that contains the confession of Arnold Beverly to the murder that Mumia is accused of committing.

The new evidence the court is refusing to hear includes the confession of Arnold Beverly who states in his sworn affidavit, "I shot Faulkner at close range." Faulkner was the cop Mumia is framed for killing. Beverly also states very clearly, "Faulkner was shot in the back and in the face before Jamal came on the scene. Jamal had nothing to do with the shooting." Arnold Beverly's confession is corroborated by eyewitness statements.

Mumia has sat on death row for most of the past 20 years, removed from his family. Yet he now stands out as an uncompromising voice for the oppressed and exploited. Many have called him the voice of the voiceless.

Mumia stands up for unions, against war, against racism, for equality for gays and lesbians, for the poor, against the many injustices of the so-called criminal justice system, for the people, and against the government.

Mumia speaks up on many of the issues ignored, lied about, or glossed over by the corporate media and the corporate politicians. We need Mumia, we need him alive, and we need him free. Yet all of the evidence shows that Mumia won't get justice in America's capitalist courts. It is most ironic that US imperialism is claming to embark on an international campaign for ‘infinite justice’, yet keeps an innocent man on death row for many years.

It is instructive that the ex- governor of Pennsylvania, Tom Ridge, who was instrumental in keeping Mumia on death row, is now one of the political leaders of Bush’s campaign against ‘terrorism’. The campaign to free Mumia is a campaign against US capitalist state terror!


We need to make even bigger protests and mobilize more decisively among the international working class to free Mumia. We call on activists in SA to revive the Free Mumia campaign.

Intsebenziswano Phakathi Kwe-ANC ne-NNP Ikwisiseko “Senkululeko” Yeli

I-ANC ne-NNP Kudala zavumelana ngezinto ezingundoqo ngenqubo emayilandelwe ukumilisela uzinzo kweli lizwe. Inkululeko yeli umzekelo, sisiphumo sesivumelwano phakathi kwe-ANC ne-NP yangoko. I-ANC yavulwa umlomo phantsi kwemiqathango eyamiliselwa yi-NP yavumelana nalo miqathango. Iingxoxo ezibizwa ngokuba yi-Groote Schuur Minutes, i-CODESA, ukuya kutsho kwezase-Wold Trade Centre, kwanezinye iingxoxwana zaphuma nezivumelwano ezabasiseko soMzantsi Afrika “omtsha”. Umgaqo siseko waqulunqwa ngezimulwano phakathi kwale mibutho mibini. Imithetho emitsha esekwa epalamente isekwa phantsi komgaqo owaphunyezwa sisivumelwano phakathi kwe-ANC ne-NP. Konke oku kubonakalisa imbumba esuka kude phakathi kwe-ANC ne-NNP ekwakheni eli lizwe. Le mbumba isekelezele ekuphumeleliseni iimfuno zoongxowankulu kweli. Yomibini le mibutho ingonoopopi yama-imperiyali.

Le mbumba ibisoloko igcinwe ekufihlakeleni ngenxa yocinezelelo labalandeli nabaxhasi be-ANC. Ukuvela esidlangalaleni nale mbumba kwantlandlolo bebuyakudida abalandeli nabaxhasi bembumba wonxantathu we-ANC/SACP/COSATU. Kaloku aba balandeli bayazi mhlophe ukuba i-NP okanye i-NNP ngumbutho wabacinezeli boongxowankulu. Iinjongo zabo kukufezekisa iimfuno zoongxowankulu ngokucinezela abasebenzi. Iinto abasebenzi abangayaziyo kukuba i-ANC, SACP kwakunye neenkokheli ze-COSATU zimele iimfuno zoongxowankulu kwanazo. Oku kubangelwa yimbali yopolitiko lweli lizwe olwenza abasebenzi abakwazi ukwahlula umzabalazo wobuzwe nowobusebenzi.

Namhlanje ubungxowankulu be-ANC abusenakufihlakala njengakuqala. Oku kuvela kwe-ANC ukuba imele iimfuno zoongxowankulu bubeka ucinezelelo phezu kwe-ANC ukuthi ithathe icala poqo phakathi kwabasebenzi noongxowankulu. I-ANC yazikhethela icala loongxowankulu kudala. Ukuze ikwazi ukufumana inxaso engagungqiyo koongxowankulu kufuneka izibonakalise ngezenzo izingathandabuzekiyo koongxowankulu.

Ezo zenzo kukucudisela abasebenzi ngeenjongo zokuba oongxowankulu bakwazi ukufumana kangangoko benako kula mandla abasebenzi. Oku kulungiselela oongxowankulu ngokucinezelela abasebenzi kubangela ukuba i-ANC iphulukane nenxaso eninzi kubasebenzi. Njengemibutho yonke yobuzwe phantsi kobungxowankulu, i-ANC izilungiselela ikufumana ivoti eqinileyo kubantu abakudidi oluphakathi (middle class), abamnyama nabamhlophe. U-Pik Botha ukujoyina kwakhe i-ANC wayiveza kakuhle le nto ngokubiza bonke abamhlophe ingakumbi abantetho isisiBhulu ukuba bajoyine i-ANC kuba kulapho iimfuno zabo zikhuseleke khona.

Abaninzi abamhlophe ebebengayiboni le nto bayakufumana ithuba lokuyibona kobubudlelwane be-ANC ne-NNP. Obu budlelwane bubonakalisa ukuyela kwe-ANC se-SACP ngasekunene, ingekuko ukuquka kwe-NNP. Ubudlelwane obuthe obusesidlangalaleni ne-NNP bunganika i-ANC iqonga lokugaya kudidi lwabaphakathi nabasebenzi abamhlophe namnyana abaxhasa i-NNP.

Ingafumana inxaso yoludidi xa iqinile ekumiliseleni inqubo yobungxowankulu obuxhaswa ngokupheleleyo ngoongxowankulu abakhulu behlabathi. Oku kuthetha ukucinezela abasebenzi ngokungenalusini. Yile nto ibeka ucinezelelo kwiinkokheli ze-COSATU ne-SACP (ingakumbi eze-COSATU) uziva zithetha ngokungavumelani ne-ANC kwimiba efana “ethile efana ne-GEAR”. Ukuqhawuka kobudlelwane be-ANC nale mibutho mibini (neenqubo zayo ezicinezela abasebenzi) buyakudla i-ANC iivoti ezivakalayo ngexesha lolonyulo. Esi ingasesinye sezizathu zobudlelwane obusesidlangalaleni ne-NNP namhlanje. Xa iphulukana nale nxaso yabasebenzi i-ANC iyakubaqinisa ulawulo lwayo epalamente ngenxaso yodidi oluphakathi (ingakumbi olusuka kwabamhlophe ebasweleyo ngokwangoku).

Abasebenzi mabazame ukuzikhulula kwimibutho yobungxowankulu efana ne-ANC ne-NNP. Mabaqalise ngoku ukwakha umbutho wabo ozimeleyo wokulwa ubungxowankulu njengenqubo ebangela ubukhoboka babo. Oko kungenzeka ngokuthi bazikhuphe kwimibutho efana ne-SACP emele oongxowankulu egameni lobukomanisi bamilisele imibutho ekhulula abasebenzi ngaphandle kokwakha ubungxowankulu ngokucinezela abasebenzi. Iinkokheli ze-COSATU eemfuno zazo zikuburhulumente bobungxowankulu ngetikiti le-ANC mazikhatyelwe ngaphandle ngabasebenzi ngokonyula iinkokheli ezilwela iimfuno zabasebenzi.

Ezi zingabonakala ngokuthi zimele ukuqhawula ubudlelandawonye phakathi kwe-COSATU nemibutho emele ubungxowankulu eyi-ANC ne-SACP. Akwanelanga ukulwela ukuqhawulwa kobudlelwane bobukhoboka phakathi kwe-ANC/SACP/COSATU koko kufanele ukuba ezi nkokheli zixhase ngokupheleleyo inqubo ezimeleyo yabasebenzi yokutshabalalisa ubungxowankulu kumiliselwe ubudlelandawonye obusekwa phezu koburhulumente obumele abasebenzi. Sibiza ulutsha ukuba luzimanye nathi kweli dabi lokulwela ihlabathi elingenabacinezeli nabazinelwa. Ukulibazisa ukwenza oku kuyakufana nesibetho kubantwana bethu nanjengoko beyakujongana noxanduva olwayekelwa sithi.



On the Medical Research Council (MRC) report on Aids [September 2001]

That this report was part funded by Bristol-Myers-Squibb, one of the major drug monopolies in the world, shows one of the contradictions of capitalism. These capitalists seek a market for their products, thus it is in their interest that the extent of the Aids pandemic in South Africa is exposed. Has this exposure led the drug monopolies to offer unlimited free treatment to all those infected? NO. They merely want to help create an increased demand for their products.

Is the agenda of the ANC government fundamentally different from that of the Bristol-Myers-Squibbs of the world? NO. The persistent refusal of the government to provide free treatment to all HIV infected people means that the law of the capitalist jungle still prevails- those who have the means, will buy treatment, at a rate that gives maximum profit to the drug cartel; the rest will die! [see the article in our April-June 2001 edition on The spread of Aids and the role of the drug monopolies]

Although disputed by the government the figures below tell their own story.
Here are some of the startling statistics from the MRC report:
1. The proportion of infection among the population has gone from 1% in 1990 to 25% by the year 2000;
2. South Africa has the highest incidence of HIV infection in the world;
3. HIV-related deaths are the biggest single cause of death today in SA;
4. By 2010 HIV related death would be at least double any other cause of death;
5. By 2010 a minimum of 5 –7 million more people would have died from Aids;
6. Since 1985, the rate of death among men between the ages of 30-40 has doubled;
7. Since 1985 the rate of death among women between the ages of 20-35 has increased by between 2 ½ –3 ½ times.
The tragic irony of the MRC report is that it is drawn from the government’s own statistics.
Down with capitalism!
Build the revolutionary working class party!
Forward to Socialism!


Recently, South African National Defence force troops were sent to Burundi to oversee the setting up of a Government of National Unity. Are they there to ensure that the slaughterers of millions are brought to book? NO.

They are there to ensure that the very mass murderers are incorporated into the state machine, getting a share of the spoils with the other nationalist groups. Their common mission: to ensure capitalist ‘stability’ so that capitalism imperialism can extract the maximum profits from the working class in the divided region.
SA troops out of Burundi!
Forward to the building of a revolutionary working class party in Burundi as part of the rebuilding of the Fourth International!
Forward to Socialism!

16 days of activism for women

It was very fashionable to be part of the support of 16 days of ‘activism’ for women. There was something crucial missing though. For all the supposed care for abuse against women, no one raised how the capitalist system fundamentally entrenches the oppression of women. Here is some food for thought: [according to the 1996 census]
· There are 2 million more men in employment than women
· Of the almost 4 million women in employment, about 1 million earn between 0 –R500 per month, and almost half the total number of women in employment earn less then R1000 per month

Under a Socialist society, with every adult sharing the work and a planned economy based on the needs of the whole society, the socio-economic base for abuse will be wiped out. Now there’s something to actively work for!

And then there was the oil ……..
Our previous positions on the struggle in Afghanistan had one glaring omission, the question of oil. There have been various writings now on the huge oil and gas reserves in the Caspian basin [the areas from Uzbekistan and related ‘states’ of the Russian Federation up to the Caspian sea]. Whoever controls these reserves will have a decisive say in the massively expanding Chinese economy.

It is for this particular reason that US imperialism wants to have complete control of any regime in Afghanistan, which is next to the Caspian basin. So to achieve their aims, US imperialism supported the ultra-violent Northern Alliance to get rid of the Taliban [the favorites of US imperialism until recently]. US imperialism will keep on working hard until they get a regime that is completely under their thumb. An ancient king was even wiped of cobwebs and hauled out of the cupboard. This is the imperialist campaign for infinite justice. Sounds actually as a campaign for infinite injustice.

The rapid fall of the Taliban is not due to the strength of imperialism but the fact that the Taliban regime was never popularly supported by the Afghan masses. As a subplot, until recently, the Bush and Bin Laden families both had shares in the same US military company. And those speculators, who profited from the 11th September attacks, will of course never be named!

The future of the peoples of the region lies in the hands firstly of the working classes of the region, and more broadly in the hands of the working classes of the world.

The struggle in Palestine
As we predicted, that US imperialism’s sudden interest in an independent Palestinian state was purely opportunistic. They wanted to get support for their campaign of terror in Afghanistan and to minimize other areas of resistance to imperialism. Now that the Taliban regime has been smashed, the old monster that we know has emerged: US imperialism fully and openly supports the murderous attack by the Sharon regime against the Palestinian masses – forgotten is the supposed ‘democratic’ defence of the Palestinian right to self determination.

And Arafat? He declares an emergency in the Gaza Strip and West Bank after the suicide attacks by alleged Hamas militants in early December. He puts some of the remaining Hamas leaders under house arrest and rounds up several militants. Why was there no emergency declared when the Israeli state intensified their murderous occupation of the Gaza strip and West Bank? Whose interest is Arafat serving?



Willingly selling out!

Thoko Didiza, Minister of Land Affairs, recently said that the government will stick to the principle of “willing seller”, “willing buyer” in order to address the question of land redisbtribution. That is, only if a fatcat landowner wants to sell his ill-gotten land, then the government will negotiate a price to buy the land and then make it available for ‘redistribution’.

Let us refresh her memory: 87% of the land was expropriated and put in the hands of the capitalist minority through the 1913 land Act. It is the ANC that is offering itself (willing seller) to any capitalist (willing buyer) to sellout on the most basic demands of the working class and fellow poor!

SAA and fairness
The SA Airways recently said that they have to retrench staff to show their commitment and fairness. They say that black managers will replace white ones, while workers of all colours have to go. Heaven help us from the days when SAA is being unfair!


It is nothing new for the middle class to ride on the back of the working class. They make themselves heroes of the working class through their media, education etc. The bitter truth is that Modise was a traitor to the working class he claimed to fight for.

Firstly, his membership and leadership of the ANC has nothing to do with the interests of the working class. He was only concerned with self-interest. This meant getting on the good side of the capitalist class. In other words he showed typical characteristics of the ANC leadership.

Among the exiled ANC members the man was notorious about his abuse of power. As the commander of MK they say he led many revolutionaries to the death traps of SADF. Under his leadership MK fighters who went to exile to get military training so that they can come back and fight for their liberation, found themselves led into abuse of drugs and alcohol and other addictive substances. These were conditions that were set up deliberately by Modise and Co. to destabilise the revolutionary spirit of the youth of the 1980s. By his conduct it could be seriously questioned who Modise was really working for.

MK cadres were surprised to find themselves in the hands of SADF before they can start their operation, as detailed information about operations was kept by the top command only. In addition, Modise and his cabinet in exile spent most of the youth’s revolutionary spirit on the Namibian War of Independence along the borders of Angola promoting a nationalist movement, SWAPO that was to betray the Namibian working class. We do not need to mention the Quatro Prison conditions Modise and Co. put their own members into when they showed signs of rebelling against the undemocratic practices within the ANC in exile.

He was part of the deal that sold the struggle of the South African working class to the imperialism capitalism. When he was the Minister of Defence he got on well with General Meiring as they had everything in common. In fact it was the rejoining of the old friends that acknowledged their friendship publicly for the first time. He sold MK and APLA combatants, preventing them from integration into the SANDF because they did not have matric. Recently those who were left out of the SANDF closed the borders of Botswana/South Africa, demanding their inclusion. The racist generals had parties and racist celebrations under him. Who can forget their celebration of the Cassinga Massacre? This was the celebration of the death of women and children of SWAPO guerillas who could not flee the camps while the soldiers SWAPO guerillas escaped with their lives. We do not have to remind ourselves of Tempe shootings in the army he is alleged to have successfully integrated. One of his major tasks was sending SA troops to defend imperialist interests in Lesotho and to crush a rebellion there.

But in what position in society was he when he died? - A capitalist, possibly a millionaire. (but clever millionaires do not reveal their full assets in public). He was in the businesses of taking over outsourced services from state assets [privatization]. One of them is the traffic and high tech security company he ran under the disguise of black of empowerment. Just how deeply was he involved in the mutli-billion rand arms deal? This is his contribution to our so-called ‘freedom’. An ex-combatant was over heard to say, when asked to comment on his death: “Go to hell Modise!!!”






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Workers International Vanguard League