Friday, June 05, 2009

South Africa: State of Nation address shows the ANC is still pro-imperialist

The state of the nation address by the new President, Zuma, shows that the ANC's pro-imperialist role is set to continue and that the working class will carry the burden of the crisis of profits of the capitalists.

1. Municipal work is privatised on a mass scale by the implementation of the so-called public works programme; instead of employing full-time municipal workers, temporary work is created. Although within weeks these jobs are over, the ANC government (with the full support of Statssa) somehow counts these as 'jobs' created, even misleading the public that 4 million jobs will be created until 2014. This makes a mockery of the supposed commitment to 'sustainable' jobs. The Cosatu leadership are cheerleaders of this type of privatization of municipal work.

2. More sinister, though, is that this provides a cover for the monopolies to continue to retrench ( they may be asked to keep workers on for some weeks with a nominal training).

3. The food gang (Pick 'n Pay, Woolsworths, Shoprite, Spar, Tiger Brands, Pioneer, and others) are making billions in profits out of deliberately starving the masses, and to this, the ANC has no plan in place. International prices of wheat, rice and maize have fallen by 40% in recent months but food prices still continue to rise. The FAO (Food and Agricultural organization of the UN) admits that there is enough food but almost 1 billion people are starving purely because they cannot afford the high prices. The capitalists are reported to continue to create an artificial scarcity in food by deliberately planting less this year. The government is more worried about sports achievements than the hunger of the masses.

4. The National Health Insurance is another scam to extend the role of the private health sector into the public sector. This is another scheme to enrich the banks that thrive on control of private health care. In the USA over 34 million people are excluded from health insurance as their income is too low. The onset of the health insurance in the US led to a rise on health costs as the private sector that was tasked with handling major sections of the implementation, simply increeased their fees. The Cosatu leaders are once again cheerleaders of this attack by imperialism on our already collapsed health system. The health sector needs to be completely nationalized under workers'control, not further privatised through this health insurance scam.

5. The over R700 Billion for infrastructure will not be for needs of the working class but will act as a cash cow for imperialist companies- nowhere is this massive sum linked to houses for all, of for setting up of a national non-profit food distributor, etc. This money will go to imperialist companies who will build power stations that pollute and in fact capacity that is not needed.

6. Not surprising is the ANC continued commitment for a bantustan for Palestinians (a so-called 2 state solution)- in this the ANC are the direct mouthpiece of imperialism, against the Palestinian masses. The recent study by reformist Levine shows that any '2-state' proposal is not possible.

7. Nowhere does the ANC tackle Anglo American for their role in the war in the DRC- how many people must die before the working class takes international action against imperialism. [already over 4 million people have died since 1996 in the war in the DRC).

8. The ANC repeats the Millienium goals, which are excuses of imperialist agencies like the UN to provide a cover to postpone meeting the needs of the working class now, while capital makes massive profits. Trillions of dollars are used to bail out the greedy banks but the few billion needed to feed the world, no-one is prepared to part with. 'Let them die' is the message from the capitalists and their agents in government.

9. The ANC is pledging to support agents of imperialism to suppress the masses in Madagascar; where is the Cosatu leadership in supporting the heroic fight of the working class in Madagascar.

We need to unite the working class, both employed and unemployed to continue the fight against capitalism and their system. Clearly a new leadership is needed in Cosatu, who is prepared to fight in a real way, and not just symbolically. Activists are being arrested on false charges of public violence, in the middle of winter the homeless in Delft are left to freeze on the pavement, activists are being shot at in the night by veiled gunmen; the working class must get organised, nationally and internationally to fight.

Our demands are:
Decent Houses for all! Occupy vacant buildings and land!
• Share the work among all who can work, without loss of pay!
• No to retrenchments and closures! Sack the bosses! Occupy! Expropriate!
• Increase all wages by a minimum of 30%, wages to increase when prices do;
• Expropriate all the food producers and distributors, under workers’ control!
• Establish a national non-profit food distributor, under workers’ control!
• Expropriate and centralise all banks, under workers’ control!
• Replace all union leadership with representatives who are prepared to fight the capitalists! Call a national council of workers’ delegates and unemployed to co-ordinate the fight
• Establish workers’ defence committees against attacks by the state
• Capitalism is the crisis, working class power the solution!

Organise or starve

Workers International Vanguard League
1st Floor, Community House, 41 Salt River rd, Salt River, South Africa 7925

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