SACP statement extremely ill-advised - ANC

Party rejects notion that acting against ill-discipline of worst order constitutes factionalism


16 August 2017

The African National Congress (ANC) has noted an extremely ill-advised and gravely unfortunate statement released by the South African Communist Party (SACP) today in relation to the ANC’s decision to institute disciplinary action against Members of Parliament (MP) who have publicly declared they voted with the opposition to dislodge the ANC in the Motion of no Confidence debate held last week.

The ANC respects the right of all Alliance Partners to hold independent views which may differ from ours on various matters. This respect, which we expect to be reciprocal, demands that on points of divergence there is thoroughgoing engagement and where necessary an agreement to disagree.

The ANC is not a structure of the SACP and as such shall not be dictated to, via media releases, by the SACP. As leader of the Alliance, we have consistently created platforms for robust engagement; each party has had ample opportunity to present their viewpoints and seek to influence one another in our thinking. The issues raised by the SACP have been exhaustively debated and it is extremely undemocratic and arrogant for the SACP to believe its view must now be decreed.

We reject with the contempt it deserves the notion that acting against ill-discipline of the worst order in our ranks is factionalism. The ANC will not allow complete collapse of political and organizational discipline in the fear of being perceived as being factional. While we appreciate the SACP’s position on matters relating to ANC President, Comrade Jacob Zuma, the ANC is under no obligation to act merely on the instructions of the SACP.

The road to socialism cannot be paved with venom and obsessive politics on personalities. The ANC remains confident that the SACP will appreciate the recent National Policy Conference’s injunction to never tolerate ill discipline within our ranks and at all times, not to delay to take appropriate action to restore party discipline.

Statement issued by the African National Congress, 16 August 2017