THE South African Communist Party (SACP) is set to decide on whether or not to break away from contesting the
elections alongside its ally the ANC as the organisation heads to its conference next week.
SACP leader Blade Nzimande said the resolution was taken back in 2007 but was never implemented. He said
the time had now come for members to decide on how best to tackle the issue.
“We took a resolution as the SACP in 2007 deciding to contest the elections but then we said we must embark on a process to engage with our allies as to how do we do that. Do we do it as part of the ANC, that the ANC leads the election or do we have a separate electoral list as the SACP?”
Nzimande said the outcomes of the ANC Polokwane conference in 2007 derailed their plans and they never implemented the resolutions.
He said they pinned their hopes on those resolutions but they would be revisiting them this year with an eye on the 2019 elections.
“We never implemented that, perhaps the reason if we are to be self-critical, we put a lot of hope out of the Polokwane outcomes. We really put a lot of hope on that maybe that is why we didn’t follow that up. We as the leadership are likely to be criticised by Congress on that and we will have to accept that criticism,” he said.
Nzimande maintained that the decision was not taken as a revolt against the ANC.
Structures of the SACP throughout the country have been speaking of contesting the next elections as a stand-alone party from the tripartite alliance which comprises of the communist party, ANC and Cosatu.
He added that they would also analyse how the alliance has been functioning. Nzimande said during the conference delegates will have to go back to that resolution and decide on how to take it forward.
“We are committed to the alliance, there is no question about that. As I have said, the issue is its mode
of functioning which is outdated. We need new ways of alliance functioning going forward. We have to go back to that resolution now and say how we implement it, improve it or amend it and so on. We are not going to our Congress to define ourselves outside the alliance,” Nzimande said.
The SACP and ANC President Jacob Zuma have been at different ends of the spectrum in recent months following revelations of state capture and the reshuffling of the cabinet in March. The organisation has been very vocal about its dissatisfaction with how Zuma operates and makes his decision.
They claimed they were never consulted when reshuffled the cabinet and got rid of Pravin Gordhan as Finance Minister and Mcebisi Jonas as his deputy. At one point the organisation called for Zuma’s removal.
Nzimande, who attended the ANC’s 5th policy conference at Nasrec, Johannesburg said despite the difference and
problems that surrounded the party, he was optimistic of returning from the gathering united.
“We remain hopeful as the SACP that the ANC should be able to overcome some of the challenges that it faces. The fact that there was that diagnostic report which was presented by the SG is very important. The ANC has done that
before, the weakness has been what the solution is. We hope out of this a solution will come for the ANC towards uniting itself,” he said.