The South African Communist Party (SACP)’s 14th national congress wraps up its conference with much controversy on its alliance with the African National Congress (ANC).
By Simphiwe Khoza
The congress that started on Monday morning, in which discussions were expected to centre on state capture and the party’s unsteady relationship with the ANC.
The conference had a rather rocky start where President Jacob Zuma was barred from attending the conference and was said not to address the people.
The SACP has recently been critical of the ruling party and the President, calling for him to step down from presidency. The conference was also set to address the fragile state of the ANC-led tripartite alliance and decide whether to continue with them or to move forward solo and run for elections on their own.
The Young Communist League (YCL) in Mpumalanga was lobbying delegates to push for the party to contest elections outside of the alliance.
Many of the SACP’s leaders including Blade Nzimande are expected to retain their positions as well as the newly appointed first SACP general secretary Solly Mapaila. Mapaila has fired up the party in the past year in becoming the lead campaigner against state capture and for President Zuma to step down.
While speaking at the SACP conference, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa has insistently said he would no longer remain quite on issues like state capture, he touched on the issue of state capture and its damaging impact on South Africa’s economy, Ramaphosa called for action to prevent further damage.
The SACP General Secretary Blade Nzimande had his fair share of words spoken in the conference as he called for the government to stop doing business with the controversial Gupta family, who were accused of having influence on the president and his government.
Nzimande also added that he felt betrayed by the Zuma leadership, which he said did not live up to its promises post Polokwane.
Nzimande said state capture by the infamous Gupta family aided by the corrupt government was on “steroids” and drastic action was needed as the ANC faced losing the 2019 general elections.
The ANC spokes person Zizi Kodwa went on twitter to say that the SACP should not leave the ANC instead they should help rebuild it, as leaving will not resolve anything.
The SACP’s 14th national congress left much to speak about in terms of the ruling party and South Africa’s political stability along with the fragile state of the alliance between the ANC and the SACP.