Nkangala congress should reflect deeply on current challenges

Disunity, tribalism, economic development and the electoral decline in the region should be major congress talk.


TSEKISO MACHIKE


‘’In our country – more than in any other part of the oppressed world – it is inconceivable for liberation to have meaning without a return of the wealth of the land to the people as a whole. It is therefore a fundamental feature of our strategy that victory must embrace more than formal political democracy. To allow the existing economic forces to retain their interests intact is to feed the root of racial supremacy and does not represent even the shadow of liberation. Our drive towards national emancipation is therefore in a very real way bound up with economic emancipation’’ – ANC Strategy & Tactics document 1969.

The African National Congress in Nkangala region will once again gather at the Zithabiseni Resort in the 7th regional conference from the 10th to the 11th June 2017 to evaluate progress made by the outgoing leadership in the current phase of the National Democratic Revolution, and give concrete expressions and meaning on how the revolutionary people’s movement – the ANC – in the region will contribute to the ongoing important task of creating a National Democratic Society buttressed by the loci of non-racial, non-sexist and democratic society with a united footprint.

The 7th regional conference of the ANC in Nkangala is a strategic platform serving as the parliament of branches and we call upon the delegates from branches to utilise it effectively towards making significant inputs by aptly characterising the challenges faced by the ANC in the current phase of the struggle and robustly engaging on how to overcome them and ultimately restore the confidence of the people of Nkangala into the ANC as their only dependable political home to better their lives, particularly the youth.

Delegates must be seized with the concerns of how to improve the quality of the lives of our people from the manacles of poverty, unemployment and inequality.

There must be a deeper reflection on organisational renewal and leadership issues, notwithstanding the fact that the ANCYL in the region has pursued the retention of the current leadership under the stewardship of chairman Speedy Mashilo, still a moment of deeper reflection is needed to ward-off problematic elements which poses dangers to the National Democratic Revolution.

The ANC in the region must be able to unite all the progressive forces behind its revolutionary programme and defeat the proliferating backwardness with internal and external elements of counter-revolution, particularly the re-emergence and mushrooming of political parties in Thembisile Hani sub-region and DR JS Moroka respectively with a full-blown tribal and ethnic outlook during the 2016 local government elections.

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Racism which is rearing its ugly head in some parts of Steve Tshwete sub-region should also be a focal point of intense discussion on how to obliterate this societal problem, particularly discussing and locating it in the context of the intersection of race and class as a contradiction.

The dramatic electoral decline of the ANC in the region post the 2016 local government elections ought to be a centre of discussion for this conference and progressive resolutions on how to deal with this danger must be articulated tacitly. It behoves conference to look into new methods of campaigning suitable to the ever-changing electoral environment. It is also of paramount importance, in the midst of a plethora of redistributive narratives defining the newly dubbed concept of Radical Economic Transformation for conference to give a revolutionary meaning to this concept and it is our strategically considered view that the following issues should be what conference must discuss to clarify Radical Economic Transformational agenda as a programme of action in the regional context:

  1. Re-introduction of Contractor Development programme in municipalities, particularly Nkangala district municipality to unlock the potential of emerging contractors, youth to be precise.
  2. Expedite the establishment of Nkangala Economic Development Agency
  3. Revitalise the township economy by supporting black entrepreneurs
  4. Establish Industrial Development Zones
  5. Establish incubation programmes for SMMEs in mining towns to produce youth owned enterprises with a mining footprint
  6. Access to opportunities in the Moloto project must benefit the local businesses of Dr JS Moroka and Thembisile Hani sub-regions. The Nkangala Economic Development Agency (NEDA) must be able to unlock the economic potential of black-owned and youth enterprises through driving a massive investment programmes to support economic growth underpinned by development to significantly transform the colonial industrial structure and ownership of the economy.
  7. We hope and trust the incoming leadership with a mixture of new blood will drive a revolutionary agenda and serve the ANC and the people of Nkangala with dignity,dedication and determination.

We wish conference will be a resounding success and the centrality of the Freedom Charter will be a lodestar in the resolutions to be taken by conference.

*Machike is the spokesman of the ANCYL in the Nkangala region.