Students movement in SA has a history in the crackdown of worker's unity in COSATU


We have witnessed the developments in the alliance (ANC-SACP-Cosatu) and how Cosatu and SACP have been deceived by the ANC bourgeoisie bloc to collapse workers’ unity in order to implement capitalist policies freely. We have witnessed how the capatalists have teamed up with the ANC leaders to purge the likes of Zwelinzima Vavi and Numsa leadership in general. We have witnessed how Marikana occurred and how the system works to undermine justice in the name of “commissions”.

However, the struggle for Socialism requires struggles for students and workers unity in action. Let us turn to the Fourth Congress of the Third International, the thesis on Communist work in trade unions:

“Despite the fierce anti-Communist witch-hunts being stirred up everywhere by the reformists, we must continue to fight for the slogan of the Communist International – against the splitting of the trade unions – with the same militancy with which we have fought for it up till now. The reformists are trying to use expulsions to provoke a split. Their aim in systematically driving the best elements out of the unions is to make the Communists lose their patience and nerve, so that instead of completing their carefully thought-out plan to win the trade unions from within, the Communists will leave the unions and come out in favour of a split”.’ (Comintern, 1921).

In Leon Trotsky’s article; Permanent Revolution & Results and Prospects, we have learned that in the event of a decisive victory of the revolution, power will pass into the hands of that class which plays a leading role in the struggle—in other words, into the hands of the proletariat. Let us say at once that this by no means precludes revolutionary representatives of non-proletarian social groups entering the government. They can and should be in the government: a sound policy will compel the proletariat to call to power the influential leaders of the urban petty-bourgeoisie, of the intellectuals and of the peasantry.

The whole problem consists in this: who will determine the content of the government’s policy, who will form within it a solid majority?

It is one thing when representatives of the democratic strata of the people enter a government with a workers’ majority, but it is quite another thing when representatives of the proletariat participate in a definitely bourgeois-democratic government in the capacity of more or less honoured hostages.

The policy of the liberal capitalist bourgeoisie, in all its wavering’s, retreats and treacheries, is quite definite. The policy of the proletariat is even more definite and finished. But the policy of the intellectuals, owing to their socially intermediate character and their political elasticity; the policy of the peasantry, in view of their social diversity, their intermediate position and their primitiveness; the policy of the urban petty-bourgeoisie, once again owing to its lack of character, its intermediate position and its complete lack of political tradition—the policy of these three social groups is utterly indefinite, unformed, full of possibilities and therefore full of surprises.

It is sufficient to try to imagine a revolutionary democratic government without representatives of the proletariat to see immediately the senselessness of such a conception, the exploitation. The refusal of the social-democrats to participate in a revolutionary government would render such a government quite impossible and would thus be equivalent to a betrayal of the revolution. But the participation of the proletariat in a government is also objectively most probable, and permissible in principle, only as a dominating and leading participation. One may, of course, describe such a government as the dictatorship of the proletariat and peasantry, a dictatorship of the proletariat, peasantry and intelligentsia, or even a coalition government of the working class and the petty-bourgeoisie, but the question nevertheless remains: who is to wield the hegemony in the government itself, and through it in the country? And when we speak of a workers’ government, by this we reply that the hegemony should belong to the working class.

The ANC in the ANC-SACP-COSATU alliance, as an organ of the bourgeoisie dictatorship, was by no means composed of proletariat alone. There were so many leaders who belonged to the bourgeoisie background looking at the leadership of the ANC being the sons and daughters of the priests and chiefs; who had power over the people.

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