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Swaziland : CPS 2nd ANNUAL CONFERENCE DECLARATION

D 19 avril 2013     H 05:27     A CPS     C 0 messages


The 2nd annual conference of the Communist Party of Swaziland was held 20-31 March under the the slogan ‘BOYCOTT AND DISRUPT MSWATI’S 2013 ANTI DEMOCRACY ELECTIONS’. It called on everyone in the broad pro-democracy movement to seize the high ground over the Mswati autocracy and to make concerted effort to seal the regime’s irreversible demise.

Unity is paramount in realising this. The CPS calls for a more pro-active attitude in the pro-democracy movement in response to the continuing desperation of the Mswati regime, which remains plagued by economic uncertainty and is imposing the cost of its failures on the suffering people of our country.

The conference analysed the situation in the country and came up with the following observations :

1. The regime is now an embarrassment to imperialist and sub-imperialist powers, who are now more willing to drop Mswati in support of the demands for democratisation of Swaziland. These forces are, at the same time, keeping the autocracy in a position to persist, essentially saving it from economic collapse which might otherwise allow the pro democracy movement to gain better momentum and build a strong movement to bring about a democratic revolution in Swaziland.

The tacit and behind the scenes support to the regime by countries in the Southern African region are helping the regime remain in power. At the same time, the pro-democracy movement has not yet managed to muster sufficient unity of purpose to pose a solid threat to the regime. The result is the long drawn-out process of increased repression against the Swazi people stemming from the various ways in which the Mswati regime maintains a tight grip on power.

There is much ignorance and lack of interest about the true situation in Swaziland in the Southern African region and beyond. The conference identified this as one of the main goals that the CPS must work to change.

2. The regime has made some short-term economic gains, with a temporary recovery of its revenue levels from the Southern African Customs Union (SACU). This bought it some breathing space amidst what would have been a dismal economic prospect. The regime claimed to have recovered from its worst crisis ever, but the reality is the economy remains disarray, public and private sector wages are severely depressed, massively curbing the buying power of the working population, impoverishment and degradation of the majority people persist unabated.

The crisis will continue as long as the Mswati autocracy is in power and can divert resources to sustain the lavish lifestyle and operations of the royal family.

Nothing will change for the better unless the Mswati autocracy is deposed and it is replaced with a democratic system offering the people the opportunity to plan and develop society and the economy to overcome our massive human development crisis of the ill health and low life expectancy of the majority of the people.

3. The prodemocracy movement still suffers from splits, divisions and lack of leadership, which creates confusion and apathy about the possibility for revolutionary change in Swaziland. The CPS believes the movement can be revitalized and we are encouraged that at some levels it is beginning to rid itself of opportunism and careerism, without which, there is a stronger chance for unity and creating common, broad-based efforts involving the whole range of forces in the mass movement.

4. The conference discussed the growth and effectiveness of the CPS in the struggle and within the freedom movement in Swaziland. The task ahead is challenging, requiring greater efforts and extra capacity by the Party to better carry out revolutionary work, in particular through its commissions and campaigns. CPS cadres must take a more resolute and concerted approach to awareness raising and practical action among the workers and the poor, and to do so with a focus on both day-to-day problems and the wider demands for political change that will put an end to the Mswati regime.

The CPS committed itself to mobilize a comprehensive offensive against the autocracy in particular by opposing the Tinkhundla elections this year. The conference affirmed the slogan ‘Boycott and Disrupt Mswati’s Anti Democracy Elections’ as a strategic demand to create popular militant action. The following key areas were identified as pillars of work.

· Seek as wide a mobilization as possible against the Mswati autocracy and a sharpening of forms of activism and struggle.

The full mobilization against the autocracy means involving all classes and sectors of society whose interests are not aligned with those of the autocracy. We must build the necessary consciousness among the workers at the forefront of the struggle to understand that mobilization must not end with their fellow workers, but extend far more broadly. The conditions in the work place and in the communities will not improve whatever effort is made until the autocracy is defeated, and this is a struggle not of the workers alone, but of the entire oppressed population in different strata and classes.

The CPS calls for an all-round mobilization to act creatively on every manifestation of autocracy everywhere. All efforts and potential must be used to propagate, agitate and organise for an all-embracing opposition the regime.

The CPS campaign are spearheads for this mobilization. They comprise :

- the Land for Food Campaign calling for the access of land and resources to the people of the countryside in order to be able to use it for effective agricultural production to end hunger and economic isolation in our rural communities ;

- the Break the Chains Campaign calling for the release of political prisoners, the unbanning of political parties and the unconditional and safe return of exiles ;

- The campaign to boycott and disrupt Mswati’s anti democracy elections.

We call on all those in the pro democracy movement, the trade union movement, the churches, and community-level structures to join and support these campaigns as best they can.

· On the disbandment of the Mswati regime and its replacement by an Interim Government.

The CPS proposals for the transition to democracy, and with it to working class control of all key sections of the economy and society, must be better disseminated and raised among all constituencies, including outside forums and news media. We must engage in and stimulate the battle of ideas at all levels on what Swaziland’s future should be. And we must do so in a wholly non-sectarian way. At the same time, we must expose the narrow interests at play that already have a clear idea of the sort of liberal capitalist dispensation they envisage for Swaziland - one that perpetuates the exploitation and exclusion of the people in the economy and political decision making. We must draw lessons from other transitions to democracy in other national contexts where compromises that seemed reasonable that time have subsequently turned out to hinder the realization of working class power.

The conference understood the need to recruit and train volunteers to begin the mobilization for the process of national discussion and consultations within communities and forces of the pro democracy movement on the Conference for Democracy. This process will give a direction on the establishment of an Interim Government to facilitate the process to achieve democratization and socialism in Swaziland of which the complete defeat of the Mswati autocracy is necessary for all power to the Interim Government for the establishment of the democratic republic.

· Building a strong skilled and discipline Party for unity and innovative pro democracy movement.

We need a strong stable Party to give leadership and guidance to the entire movement at all times and without lagging. The CPS will ensure that the revolutionary movement is able to carry its activities with minimum threat from the enemy undercover police who are all out to destroy the movement. It is only the CPS that can give capacity to the movement to be able to lead to action all the social classes that massively join the movement as the Mswati regime’s crisis escalates and the price becoming heavy to the people.

The movement must be assisted to connect itself efficiently amongst the masses. Party cadres must be politically skilled enough to command respect even amongst those who are oppose to the CPS because of the manner in which we work within the forces and our level of organisation and discipline.

It is more necessary now for the CPS to mobilise to the front more so as the regime bans all forms of legal mobilisation of all the forces of the pro democracy movement. We need to stimulate the urban and rural working class and young people in particular to take more initiative in the struggle against the Mswati autocracy.

· Urge the international community to play a major role in the struggle to bring about multi party democracy in Swaziland.

The world has a major role to our struggle and the conference consider and effective mobilization and raising sharply the situation in the country. SADC member states need to take an active role in the democratization of Swaziland as a member state. It is no use for the international community to point to the Swazi Constitution as a "step forward", when that Constitution upholds the perpetuation of the monarchic autocracy.

The Republic of South Africa has much influence over the situation in Swaziland, and we hope will contribute meaningfully to exerting outside pressure for ending the Mswati dictatorship. There is a need to work closely with the tripartite alliance movement in South Africa, share analysis with an aim of revitalizing the solidarity support that appears to stoop in terms of public awareness of its membership in particular on the new developments in Swaziland.

· On the Mswati’s Anti Democracy Election

The elections will remain a sham unless political parties are unbanned and allowed to participate and organise freely. The CPS calls for the boycott and disruption of the elections. The world must refuse in any way to recognise these elections. Governments who have dealings with the regime must put pressure to the regime not to continue with the elections but instead calls for Mswati to disbanded his government and allow the people of Swaziland in their organisations and communities to establish an Interim Government that will lead Swaziland to democracy.

People from countries whose governments have relations with the autocracy must put pressure to their governments to shun the Mswati regime politically, economically and socially and pledge support to the establishment of a democracy in Swaziland.

At home, all forces of the pro democracy movement must mobilise and make open the call for a mass boycott and join in meetings to plan the effective ways to boycott and disrupt the elections. Disruption can take place in many ways. People who may be intimidated to vote in the elections must be encouraged to spoil their ballot papers.

The CPS Conference committed itself unanimously to the aims outlined above, and will do its utmost to ensure they are realized.