ANC and the Alliance: transition deferred?

by Jul 11, 2012Magazine

transition-deferredThe ANC, SACP and COSATU will hold vital conferences that will shape the Tripartite Alliance for the next years. Given the role of the ANC in power, these meetings have the potential to shape the direction of the country for a number of years to come. A major question is whether there can be a new beginning for the restructuring of the transition that has effectively left power (not just economic power) in the hands of a small minority. The failure to redistribute wealth on a radical basis, which is urgently needed to transform power relations, is at the heart of this question.
Why has the transition failed? Why has the power of big capital not been dislodged and will the Alliance forces find common cause in putting together an effective programme for radical transformation? Moreover, even if this is achieved will there be effective implementation? According to NUMSA and many other forces in the Alliance most of the more radical Polokwane resolutions have been blocked. Worse, policies more consistent with what the SACP calls the 1996 class project continue in the form of conservative macroeconomic policies, attacks on public sector wages, use of labour brokers, youth wage subsidy scheme, e-tolling, police repression, attacks on media freedom, etc. Corruption and the looting of government coffers at all levels is worse today than under the Mbeki regime.
These are some issues that no doubt will be discussed, not only at the ANC policy conference but also at the SACP and COSATU Congresses.
The articles of this special feature begs many similar questions. We hope the readers of Amandla! will be provoked into giving us their views on the difficult strategic issues and questions facing the ANC and the Alliance. Questions, no doubt, will open up on the future of the Alliance given the deep divisions that are tearing apart some sections of the ANC and other Alliance partners. It is necessary to reflect on what form should the renewal of left politics take. Will this be inside the Alliance or outside or a combination of both?
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