Response to Justice Piitso’s “Demonstrating the origins of economic oppression”
The New Age published Justice Piitso’s “Demonstrating the origins of economic oppression” (25 July 2017), which as essentially an attack directed at our SACP General Secretary Cde Dr Blade Nzimande. This response to Piitso was submitted to The New Age, but the newspaper did not carry it since then. This is not surprising. The New Age is part of the ideological apparatus of the Guptas, and is increasingly the voice of an anti-SACP sentiment and distortions.
From the onset Piitso should learn to separate a personal vendetta from a political posture. The decision some years ago in the past to dissolve an SACP Limpopo Provincial Executive Committee in which he previously served was not Nzimande’s decision. It was a decision of the SACP. Hence he is wrong to attribute the dissolution to Nzimande as a person. And that dissolution was correct. In fact Piitso’s liberal individual behaviour reinforces the correctness of that decision.
Piitso’s persistence on Nzimande being a former Inkatha Freedom Party member defies logic, particularly after so many comrades with good history and sharp memory in our movement have written so many articles and made interviews disputing such baseless allegations. At no stage did the IFP ever claim Nzimande was its member either.
On the contrary, its leader rejected any association or agreement on any ideological ground with Nzimande. But Piitso, his discredited sources and his ilk still do not get it. A long standing stalwart of our struggle Cde Michael Sutcliff expressed disgust at such casting of aspersions directed at Nzimade’s participation in the struggle. Sutcliff’s is article was ironically published by The New Age on 3 August 2015.
And, by the way, Piitso must not undermine the intelligence of SACP members and the Party for electing Nzimande to its Central Committee in the early 1990s and as its Deputy National Chairperson and thereafter as General Secretary since 1998 for five terms of office successively. This is an overwhelming confidence in Nzimande.
It was under Nzimande’s leadership as the chief representative of the SACP that the Party’s Central Committee managed to grow the SACP to become the largest ever since it was formed. In the last term of office from 2012 to 2017 the Central Committee with Nzimande as its chief representative grew the Party from 150,000 members to approximately 300,000 members. What are Piitso and his ilk who went to the “Congress of the People” (Cope) saying? Nothing but sheer liberalism orbiting outside the collective discipline of the Party. By the way as the vanguard of the working class the SACP’s strategic focus to reach out to all workers in good faith and organise the most advanced in its ranks is correct. The SACP is not a sectarian party.
Piitso is denying that he benefited from the Gupta directly or indirectly, but he is not denying that his wife broadcast his CV to the Guptas. Piitso has failed to convince the public that his CV was broadcast to the Guptas purposelessly. Piitso’s CV was surely broadcast to the Guptas purposefully.
In addition this is consistent with his attacks since then on the SACP or its leadership in WhatsApp groups and through open letters. Piitso quotes Vladimir Lenin discussing monopoly capital. But nowhere did Lenin ever justify the notion of “white monopoly capital” that is of recent used synonymously with defending the Guptas.
Piitso’s response regarding his CV broadcast by his wife to Guptas is mute. No revolutionary can accept an opportunity to audition for a post to a company whose conduct he does not approve of. Further, instead of flying the Gupta flag sky-high, Piitso should perhaps tell the nation why he is no longer an ambassador in Cuba or elsewhere and should be open about everything that happened and the people need to know about their public representatives.
Isaac Luthuli is Deputy National Secretary of the Young Communist League
This article first appeared in the SACP journal, Umsebenzi Online.