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This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. It is the product of almost two decades of research and includes analyses, chronologies, historical documents, and interviews from the apartheid and post-apartheid eras.

Now Mbeki savages SACP

FRIDAY, 8.30AM:
03 Jul 1998 00:00

DEPUTY President Thabo Mbeki on Thursday added his voice to Wednesday's criticism by President Nelson Mandela of the South African Communist Party.

Addressing the SACP's 10th annual congress, Mbeki berated the party for the ease with which it has levelled "charges of treachery" against the African National Congress, adding that the ANC does not need the SACP as a watchdsog over its policies as government.

Said Mbeki: "None of us should go around carrying around the notion in our heads that we have a special responsibility to be a revolutionary watchdog over the ANC."

At the heart of the attacks by Mandela and Mbeki is criticism by the ANC's allies the SACP and the Congress of SA Trade Unions of government's Growth, Employment and Redistribution (Gear) macroeconomic programme.

Net job losses since the launch of Gear, and the recent crash of the rand on international currency markets and the prospect of negative economic growth and spiralling interest rates have added fuel to the anti-Gear argument.

Responding to Mbeki's sppech, the SACP's Jeremy Cronin said the party does not regard it as an attack, but as a sign of the seriousness with which he regards the congress. Cronin added that the SACP is not a "revolutionary watchdog ... snapping from the stands", and that the party's criticism of the ANC was made in good faith. He reiterated the SACP's opposition to Gear. He said the SACP iontends to remain in the tripartite alliance, and to be "communist, autonomous, independent and have the courage of our conviction."

Meanwhile, the SACP on Thursday elected Blade Nzimande as its new general secretary, to replace incumbent Charles Nqakula, who was elected unopposed as national chair, a largely ceremonial post. Welfare Minister Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi was elected deputy national chair.

This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. Return to the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory site.