ANC delegates carry the hopes of ordinary people
DELEGATES attending the ANC policy conference in Midrand need to bear in mind that they are carrying the aspirations of millions of South Africans still locked in deprivation.
In their deliberations they dare not betray the hopes of ordinary people who continue to pin their wishes on the progressive policies of the ruling party.
The dream of a better life for all is far from being realised. Consequently, all resolutions should address the naked socio-economic hardships that the masses face on a daily basis.
Accordingly, the conference must begin to contest some of the false assertions that are emerging as the content and form of the struggle for a non-sexist and non-racial society.
The most glaring false assertion was first made by the ANC national executive committee (NEC) in the January 8th statement of 2011 who introduced the strange term "black South Africans".
Reference was made to "the empowerment of black South Africans in general" and further more it was stated that "these black South Africans are at the centre of the ANC's war against poverty, unemployment and underdevelopment."
The concept also found prominence in the vocabulary of the National Planning Commission (NPC).
Hopefully, this false notion will be contested in the commission that will deal with strategy and tactics.
An explanation might as well be given as to whether the ANC is deviating from its original position on strategy and tactics as was articulated at the Morogoro conference held in Tanzania in May 1969.
The Morogoro conference declared: "The main content of the present stage of the South African revolution is the national liberation of the largest and most oppressed group - the African people. This strategic aim must govern every aspect of the conduct of our struggle whether it be the formulation of policy or the creation of structures.
"Among other things, it demanded in the first place the maximum mobilisation of the African people as a dispossessed and racially oppressed nation. This is the mainspring and it must not be weakened."
Without a doubt the emphasis on black South Africans is diluting and weakening the spirit of the Morogoro strategy and tactics document.
Africans bore the brunt of national oppression and exploitation and their pauperisation still continues unabated. There needs to be clarity whether the affirmation of Africans in today's ANC is less important than it was in 1969.
Delegates should not be blinded by the fact that such a term might not find prominence in the current policy discussion documents. Such ill-defined concepts, smuggled without many of them noticing, could take the entire transformation process off track.
It must also be understood that any revolution at any given time does produce its own traitors and villains from within. South Africa is no exception.
There is a need to define the philosophical, economic and ideological outlook of the ANC beyond its hundred years. The ideological content of the economic trajectory that the ANC is currently pursuing is not clearly defined and does not enjoy the confidence of the working class.
The New Growth Path represents an antithesis of the illusionary Leftward shift that Polokwane triumphalists talked about. There is a lesson for the radicalisation of the economic trajectory to overcome all the socio-economic challenges.
The nationalisation debate should move beyond the mines and focus on the entire Minerals and Energy Complex. It is through such holistic interventions that the South African economy might begin to address the huge problems of unemployment, poverty and underdevelopment.
- Maseti is a political economist, analyst and MD of Ngubengcuka Consulting