20 January 2010

Umsebenzi Online: Two SNC Resolutions

Umsebenzi Online, Volume 9, No. 2, 20 January 2010

In this Issue:

  • SACP Special National Congress Draft Resolutions: Draft Report of the Commission dealing with Economic Transformation and Rural Development
  • Resolution on Local Government and Cooperative Governance
Editorial Note

We release today for public engagement, a first of the series of the draft resolutions adopted at our 2nd Special National Congress last year December. This are resolutions as presented to plenary and do not include additional comments made from the floor as they will be processed by the Central Committee.

We hope these resolutions will contribute towards focusing the national debate on contemporary challenges facing our country and ways of resolving them to liberate the majority of our people from the bondage of Capitalism.

Together let’s fight capitalist greed and corruption and defeat tenderprenuers!! Together, let’s build Socialism!!

Socialist regards!


Draft Report of the Commission dealing with Economic Transformation and Rural Development
The commission noted that the existing growth path has failed to resolve the unemployment crisis and was associated with increases in inequality.

The crisis of capitalism makes it unlikely for us to return to growth at pre-crisis levels on this growth path.

Commission reaffirm the need for state leadership to place the economy on a new growth path through effecting structural changes capable of promoting decent work and sustainable livelihoods. A more effective industrial policy is central to this.

The commission took note of work in government broadly along the line of what has been called for by the SACP. It recommends that the SACP engages in detail with government’s Industrial Plan when it is made public.

The commission called for macro-policy to be realigned to support industrial policy. The mandate of the reserve bank must be revisited to prioritise job creation and to ensure that its interest rate decisions do not result in an overvalued currency.

To this end the SACP must enhance its capacity to engage the alliance task team on the review of the macro-economic policy package and the State and Economic Transformation Commission must be seized with this mater.

There is a need to enhance training and skills development as an integral part of industrial policy and to ensure effective alignment between state departments responsible for education and training and economic development.

The commission supported a developmental approach to trade policy as well as a strategic use of standards setting and interventions by the competitions authorities to support industrial policy objectives. Developmental financing for industrial development needs to be upscale and greater conditionality needs to be extracted from those benefiting from state finance.

Central to any industrial policy must be transformation of procurement policies to ensure that they support increased local production and we must resist international pressures to undermine our capacity in this regard.

The commission recommends that the party engages in the campaign to ensure that the WTO Doha round negotiations (and particularly NAMA) does not constrain the policy space we need for industrial policy.

The commission calls for BBBEE to be reviewed so that it can be more aligned to the promotion of local production and procurement and not complicate development programmes that benefit communities and state intervention in that regard.

The commission supported an approach in which development should be more energy saving and conscious of the need to avoid catastrophic climate change. While we support industries becoming greener we are opposed to extending speculative trading in the form of carbon trading.

The commission called for a more energetic promotion of co-operatives and notes the emergence of SANACO as the apex structure of the co-operatives movement.

The commission reiterated that the SACP‘s fundamental objective is socialisation, which it understand as establishing control by direct producers over the means of production. This involves amongst other things effective exercise by producers of powers over the production and distribution of surplus value, as well as effective exercise of powers by producers over the organisation of labour processes.

This vision will shape the SACP’s approach to the debate on nationalisation. We support the 52nd ANC Conference Resolution to establish a state owned mining company and we will engage in the debate on nationalisation of mining industry. However we insist that any such moves must serve the transformation of the mining sector, key elements of which must include the beneficiation of mineral products and the transformation to promote increased decent work opportunities in the sector. In this regard the party supports the revisiting of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act to ensure that the existing state ownership of the mineral resources beneath the soil also serves this agenda.

The commission reiterated the call for nationalisation of specific sectors made in the 12th National Congress but calls on the SETC to examine what transformation in each of those sectors would be needed to advance towards socialisation. A similar exercise also needs to be undertaken with regards to existing State owned enterprises.

The commission also realised that even short of nationalisation we can begin to take steps towards transformation along the road to socialisation. The SETC must identify in detail the opportunities arising in this regard from the likely increased capital’s dependence on the state in the period ahead.

On rural development the Commission broadly endorsed the approach in the congress discussion on Rural Development.

It emphasised that market mechanisms will not be able to achieve land reform on a sufficient scale and endorsed the documents recommendation of nationalisation of the land as a step towards socialisation. At the same time, it identified a number of problems in existing state owned land thus emphasising the need for a path towards socialisation.

The commission emphasised that we must break down the marginalisation of rural development, meaning amongst other things, that industrial policy must impact on rural development. The commission was concerned about the decimation of rural trading and other productive activities and emphasises that rural development is not just about farming. It must also be linked to industrial decentralisation and the relocation of other service activities.

The commission therefore supported an integrated focused programme embracing infrastructure, training and support services but is concerned about the bureaucratisation, agentisation and ineffectiveness of existing structures supposed to promote rural development.

The commission is also concerned at the fact that privatisation of previous quasi-regulatory bodies in commercial agriculture have led to a concentration of capital in the sector. The commission called for the establishment of a dedicated rural development bank and an invigorated co-operative development programme. We need to recognise that the current crisis of rural marginalisation by capital creates opportunities for the development of alternatives to capitalism in rural development. In infrastructure special attention needs to be paid to water and road development and there is also a need for better co-ordination with the National Parks Authority.

Education and Training in agriculture needs to be taken more seriously both in school and higher education.

There needs to be recognition of the fact that massive challenges of acute underdevelopment exist in the former Bantustans. Special attention needs to be paid on the impact of traditional leadership on the reproduction of patriarchal relations and on land reform.

The commission reiterates its support for the banning of the labour brokers.

The commission recommends that congress endorses the recommendations in this report.

Resolution on Local Government and Cooperative Governance

This Congress, noting:

1.      The crucial importance of an effective, efficient, responsive and transformative local government system to the national democratic and socialist struggles.
2.      The severe challenges confronting local government.
3.      The effects of the global and domestic crisis on our country and its consequences for local government
4.      Widespread community protests targeted at a range of failures at municipal level, even if some of the failures are those of provincial and national government.
5.      “The State of Local Government in South Africa Report” and the National Local Government Turnaround Strategy (LGTAS) finalized by the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA).
6.      The consideration by the SNC Commission on Local Government of the LGTAS and the SACP Paper “Local Government, Cooperative Governance and the Developmental State: A Discussion Paper”.
7.      The government’s Policy Review of the powers and functions of the 3 spheres of government, which deals, among other issues, with a possible new model of local government and options on the provinces.
8.      The SACP’s consistent stress on the need to actively combat corruption in every sphere, including local government, the 2009 Red October campaign on Corruption, and the Special National Congress slogan “Together Let’s Fight Capitalist Greed and Corruption!”
9.      The CC Political Report to the Special National Congress, particularly the need to reverse the racial, economic and social fragmentation of apartheid planning.

Therefore Resolves To:

1.      Endorse the SACP’s “Local Government, Cooperative Governance and the Developmental State: A Discussion Paper” as processed by the Commission on Local Government.
2.      Endorse the basic thrust of COGTA’s LGTAS (National Local Government Turnaround Strategy) and actively commit all SACP structures from branch level upwards to play a full, creative and effective role in the implementation of the LGTAS.
3.      Finalise a report on the range of submissions made at the Special National Congress Local Government Commission by the first CC meeting  of 2010 and present it at the workshops proposed in section 4 below.
4.      Organize provincial workshops leading to a national workshop on local government in the first half of 2010 to further develop our policies on local government, the government’s Policy Review process, and the Green Paper on Cooperative Governance;  our engagement with the LGTAS; and our preparations for the 2011 local government elections.
5.      Mandate the CC to engage further with our Alliance partners and government around the following issues relating to the LGTAS:
a.      The vital importance of organizing a massive national effort including the widest range of stakeholders and constituencies in consistent support of the LGTAS.
b.      Retaining the LGTAS as a national framework and allowing municipalities to develop their own specific turnaround plans within this framework.
c.       Ensuring that municipalities consult with stakeholders and communities in shaping their turnaround plans.
d.      Establish inclusive Alliance and community structures that monitor and contribute to the implementation of the LGTAS.
e.      Avoiding too many targets in too short a time and link immediate, short-term and long-term targets as part of an overall strategy and related programmes.
f.        Sequencing and phasing the LGTAS, taking into account the balance of forces and capacity and resources available.
g.      Undertaking a land audit in municipalities
h.      Linking the LGTAS more clearly to the new local government model that will emerge.
i.        Linking the LGTAS to our “Know Your Neighbourhood Campaign”, Red October and other campaigns

6.      Engage with our Alliance partners and government on the need for a new, more effective local government model that takes the following issues into account:
a.      Defending the strengths of the current model while decisively dealing with its weaknesses in a balanced way.
b.      Shaping the new model of local government within the framework of the need to strengthen the developmental state and the cooperative governance system.
c.       Considering a review of the two-tier system of District and Local municipalities.
d.      Welcoming the classification of municipalities according to capacity and the development of a differentiated approach to them.
e.      Giving full and enthusiastic support for the proposals on Ward Committees and contributing towards Ward Committees tasks in profiling residents in wards, addressing immediate issues of residents, establishing a cooperative in every ward and tackling illiteracy
f.        Ensuring the more effective integration of IDPs (Integrated Development Plans) into provincial and national planning, and ensuring more effective integration of  rural development strategies into IDPs. 
g.      Supporting the review of the financial model of local government, including the local government financial legislation.
h.      Fully endorsing a review of the supply chain management system
i.        Clarifying the funding implications of the LGTAS.
j.        Providing greater clarity on the role of Traditional Leaders.

7.      Engage with our Alliance partners to shape a more effective and productive relationship between the ANC (and Alliance structures) and municipal structures, taking into account the following, among other issues:
a.      While ANC and Alliance structures should provide strategic and policy oversight over councilors and officials, and monitor their performance, they should not micro-manage municipalities, and   intervene in narrow or factionalist terms to decide on appointment of officials and decisions about tenders.
b.      The need to avoid factionalism within political structures being transferred to municipal structures and vice versa.
c.       A review the deployment of senior political office bearers to the administration of municipalities in which the senior councilors are junior to them in the political structures.

8.      Give full support to a massive anti-corruption campaign in every sphere, including local government, and urge SACP members who are public representatives to abide by the highest socialist morality; and ensure that municipal workers, councillors and others who expose corruption are defended against being penalized in any way.
9.      Support a review of utilities and other forms of outsourcing at municipal level and call for a cessation of the creation of new utilities and similar structures until this review is finalised.
10. Give effective support to the Operation Clean Audit 2014 Campaign
11. Support legislation and policy that prevents public servant from being councilors in future.
12. Work with our Alliance partners and government in ensuring that local government takes greater responsibility for environmental protection and regeneration; and the campaign against HIV/Aids.
13. More actively engage with councilors and municipal officials who are SACP members to ensure that they are fully effective in their municipalities.
14. Work towards the Moutse, Matatiele and other related demarcation challenges being resolved amicably and urgently in the interests of the majority of the people.
15. Begin preparations for the 2011 local government elections both through own structures and those of the Alliance as soon as possible, and to focus in particular on the challenges in the Western Cape.