This was our direct input for an urgent action programme at the Wasp meeting of 25th August 2013
41 Salt River rd
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Dear Comrades of the Interim Executive of the WASP
Re: Concerns over platform and Programme of Action
When the pending formation of the WASP was announced we had great hopes that at last here was an opportunity for the left to unite in a combat organization against the capitalist class. The formation of a revolutionary party in SA and Southern Africa is long overdue. But now we are not so sure that the leadership of Wasp is committed to this.
The capitalist class, spearheaded by Anglo American is launching a political attack on the working class, starting with the Amplats workers. 6900 Amplats workers will be retrenched by 1st September, yet the Wasp sets a day of ‘action’ almost a month and a half later for the 12th October, on a Saturday. It raises a question over the motive of this day of ‘action’- is it really to combat the attacks of the capitalist class or to just go through the motions because the real focus of WASP is not the class struggle but getting someone elected into the bourgeois parliament?
Without a real programme of combat against the capitalist class, the Wasp structures turn whatever mineworkers committees remain, into election campaign structures. Which is worse? Amcu turns the workers committees into union structures; the Wasp leaders turn them into election committees- the effect is the same- neutralising a combat organization that united the working class irrespective of union or political affiliation.
If the capitalists succeed in retrenching the Amplats workers, they will cut through the rest of the mineworkers like a knife, unleashing a wave of retrenchments that will go beyond into other sectors. In fact, the wave of dismissals has already cut down thousands of militant farm workers. Its purpose is one, to behead the current revolt against the capitalist class. What do we do in response? We have already sent a letter where we outline an urgent programme of action. Every day is important. What has been done to discuss and act on such a programme?
Meeting with the EFF
Malema’s Economic Freedom Fighters is a capitalist organization. What is the DSM/Wasp Secretariat doing, having meetings with them?
The model that the EFF proposes for SA is that of Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan where unions and workers organizations were smashed to promote capitalist development. (Clause 21 of the EFF Manifesto)
The EFF proposes the ‘right of all people to trade and manufacture’, in other words, they propose the right of capitalists to exist. (Clause 31).
The EFF proposes that land be nationalised in the same way as the mineral rights have been transferred to the state. (Clause 39) In the mining sector, the fact that the state owns the mineral rights has not stopped for one moment the super-exploitation of the mineworkers nor of the communities around them. It has only led to more crumbs for black capitalists while profiteering has exceeded levels of the days of apartheid.
Clause 49 of the EFF Manifesto supports industrial and manufacturing ‘entrepeneurs’, ie capitalists.
Clause 124 deals with the relations with the army and the police. To Malema and his ilk, the police are not our enemies, only yesterday the very police gunned down the mineworkers- were the police not acting in the interest of the ‘white monopoly capital’ that Malema claims to oppose? Every day, in the service delivery protests, the police crack down and shoot us, are they not the enemy?
In short, under the guise of Socialist rhetoric, the EFF is but a poor imitation of the ANC, an organization that the Wasp and working class forces should have nothing to do with.
Once again, it seems that for the WASP Secretariat, gaining electoral support takes precedence over revolutionary principles.
On the splits in Cosatu
Who wants to split Cosatu or turn it into a passive lapdog? Imperialism. Why do they want to neuter Cosatu? Because they know that most Cosatu members reject the ANC. A Cosatu that breaks with the ANC will change the balance of forces in the country even further. The Cosatu leaders have suppressed their own report that shows 60% of shopstewards want Cosatu to break from the ANC. But they cannot suppress the reality as was expressed by the NUM rank and file who broke from their leaders last year in one of the biggest mineworkers strikes that Africa has ever seen. Why should we not call for Cosatu to remain united and for workers to overthrow their leaders and break with the ANC; its seems that the Wasp leaders are hoping that Cosatu splits and that it will link up with the ‘left’ leaning wing. A break up of Cosatu will set back the struggle of the working class as the capitalist class will accelerate their attacks on the masses. They want worker to fight worker to divert us from the fight against the capitalist class. If Cosatu splits, the rump of the ANC we see as joining up with the DA, something they are already doing in practice.
Instead of defending the gains of the working class, we see the Wasp leaders as looking for opportunities to make election gains.
To our surprise the draft presented to the launching meeting of the Wasp is still very much an electoral approach , ‘kick out the fatcats’ implies that if Zuma and co are kicked out and if DSM reps are installed in this bourgeois parliament then we will have the basis for Socialism- this is not true. Any revolutionary participation in parliament should be to expose it and build up forces outside of it and against it. The demand for ‘massive investment in housing, electricity, water, sanitation, roads, public transport and social services’ is exactly what the ANC govt is doing, but they are doing it to enrich the capitalist class. In fact the ANC is implementing the IMF plan. This demand of the Wasp does not even call for housing for all, nor distinguish itself from the ANC and IMF plan.
Thus we see that all the inputs from workers, communities and workers’ organizations from the floor at the launching meeting, for a fighting organization that mobilises for the revolutionary overthrow of capitalist relations and for workers demands, has been ignored by the Wasp Secretariat.
We call for: