Thursday, January 23, 2020

SACP Year-end Statement
29 December 2019

The South African Communist Party (SACP) wishes the working class, the poor and all South Africans a prosperous new year, 2020. Prosperity for the working class and the poor in particular requires sustained mass activism, progressive trade union unity, and intensification of the struggle against capitalist exploitation, altogether with its neo-liberal policy regime. An essential part of this struggle, which we must deepen going forward, is the fight against state capture and other forms of corruption, criminality, patriarchy and gender-based violence.

Working class and organisational unity and cohesion

The SACP will strengthen its work in supporting the programmatic unity of the working class. This will include further advancing the programme to forge popular Left and widest possible patriotic fronts.

The SACP will therefore reinforce its efforts to foster Alliance and broader unity and work together with its allies and other progressive mass, sectoral and community-based formations. Our key objective for community mobilisation is to foster developmental participatory democracy. Our aim is to overcome the many challenges facing especially working class and poor households, as directed by our Red October Campaign and Special National Congress held in December 2019.

The SACP commits itself to the very important challenge of rebuilding our revolutionary movement, comprising the Alliance and a variety of other progressive formations, in pursuit of fundamental transformation. This strategic task includes rebuilding and strengthening progressive youth, women, community and worker organisations to tackle unemployment, poverty and inequality, and to fight the scourges of criminality, substance and drug abuse, and violence in general and gender-based violence in particular.

The crisis of social reproduction and gender-based violence

Our country will not be able to bring an end to gender-based violence unless the scourge is tackled by all and in the whole of society. Hence our call to all organisations, including but not limited to sectoral and community-based organisations such as stokvels, burial societies, school governing bodies and residents associations, to actively join in the mobilisation against gender-based violence.

The SACP is calling for maximum unity of South Africans to overcome the vicious impact of the crisis of social reproduction (the crisis facing many households, especially the poor and the working class, to make ends meet) and patriarchy. This is a patriarchy that was sharpened and anchored into the economy and its structures of labour exploitation by capital. It is a patriarchy behind the high levels of gendered inequality, unemployment, poverty and violence.

The system of capitalist exploitation has plunged the capacity of many working class and poor households to make ends meet into multiple crises. Central to these is the crisis of social reproduction. Its burden is largely carried by women, the overwhelming majority in unpaid labour, and the majority often tasked, in working class and poor communities, to look after children, do household chores, look after the sick and vulnerable, and lead organisational efforts directed towards sustainable livelihoods for social reproduction.

The burden of the crisis of social reproduction is also carried by the youth. In all community protests it is often young unemployed people who are in the forefront. Youth unemployment is higher than unemployment in other age groups. It is the youth in our communities that is often hooked into drugs, substance and alcohol abuse. It is also the youth, more than any other stratum that is facing the harsh realities of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. It is the youth that is carrying the brunt of the crisis of capitalism and its manifestation and reproduction in our communities.

State-owned enterprises and the crisis of capitalism

The SACP particularly calls upon the progressive trade union movement to convene an all-embracing national summit or conference in 2020. The purpose of the gathering should be to bring together all progressive trade unions to discuss the conditions of the workers and come up with a common programme of action. In defence of the workers and communities, especially working class and poor households, the turnaround should include defending state-owned enterprises against the resurgence of the neo-liberal agenda of private profiteering, exploitation and associated wealth accumulation practices.

A prosperous publicly-owned sector, supporting and supported by a flourishing co-operatives sector, is crucial to employment creation, as well as to reducing poverty and inequality in our society. Developmentally effective state-owned enterprises will also go a long way in expanding access to the practical component of professional, technical and vocational training qualifications. In particular, they will expand access to apprenticeships, learnerships, experiential training and other forms of recognised workplace skills development programmes.

The SACP calls for a renewed focus in holding to account and bringing to book all those who have been responsible for bad governance, mismanagement and looting of our state-owned enterprises and other public entities.

A turnaround of our economy is inconceivable without a turnaround and strategic expansion of the publicly-owned sector to support national development. This must include transformation of the financial sector and building a thriving developmental state banking sector.

The results of a South African economy that is dominated by the private profit motive include a persistently high rate of unemployment. This presently affects 10.3 million active and discouraged unemployed work seekers. Neo-liberal restructuring, aimed at profit maximisation, has also increased retrenchments. It is one of the structural factors underpinning job losses and increasing unemployment to even higher levels. Neo-liberalism has generated social insecurity through atypical and precarious forms of employment which have increasingly been adopted by capitalist bosses to replace permanent employment. The neo-liberal policy regime includes privatisation, outsourcing and opening up state-owned enterprises to exploitation and competition to facilitate private wealth accumulation. Related to this, the neo-liberal agenda also entails measures that coalesce around weakening the productive capacity of the state and its involvement and intervention in the economy in favour of the forces of private profiteering.

The working class must unite and confront neo-liberalism with all its might. The SACP will resolutely push forward and deepen efforts in this struggle. 

A fight to the finish

The SACP will also continue its efforts to tackle state capture and other forms of corruption. The next phase, a fight to the finish, needs more efforts on ensuring that the evidence-based progress achieved from the various investigations is consolidated and culminates into those responsible for or complicit in the corruption being held to account. This should include successful prosecution, asset forfeiture and sufficiently deterrent prison sentences.

The investigations include the commission of inquiry into state capture, the commission of inquiry into allegations of corruption at the Public Investment Corporation, the commission of inquiry into tax administration and governance by the South African Revenue Services, and the high-level review panel on the State Security Agency. 

The SACP vows to increase its focus on the struggle to liberate our country’s intelligence services from the networks of state capture and from being used for private personal and factional agendas.


Dr Alex Mohubetswane Mashilo
Central Committee Member and Spokesperson 


Hlengiwe Nkonyane
Communications Officer: Media Liaison Services, Digital and Social Media Co-ordinator
Mobile: +27 79 384 6550


Office: +2711 339 3621/2
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