Themba Mthembu can serve as MEC - SACP KZN

Party reiterates however that it did not support the reshuffling of the provincial cabinet

South African Communist Party

Moses Mabhida Province

Press statement, 7 June 2016

The South African Communist Party in Moses Mabhida Province held an Extended PWC Meeting on Monday 6 June 2016 to reflect on the current political developments in the province, mainly the Provincial Cabinet shuffle that was pronounced yesterday by Premier Cde Willies Mchunu.

Firstly, it must be noted upfront that the SACP in the province only learnt about this shuffling when it was about to be announced in the media. The Provincial Secretary of the SACP was called to the ANC Provincial Office yesterday morning where he was advised about his new deployment.

As a true leader of our organisation, the Provincial Secretary took a conscious decision in approaching this matter and advised the ANC that whilst he understands that the it has a prerogative to deploy its cadres as and when it deems it necessary but being a Provincial Secretary of the SACP he felt strongly that a proper consultation with the Party should have taken place.

The SACP requested to be given twenty-four hours to consult with its internal structures since this deployment is affecting its leader and without a doubt has implications to the Party at all levels. It is a norm and practise within the alliance that when issues of this nature are to take place extensive consultation should take place.

We have noted with dismay that despite the ANC having agreed on giving us the time requested to consult our structures it however proceeded with making a pronouncement on this very serious matter. This created a lot of confusion within our structures, in communities in the province and nationally.

We want to reiterate the contents of our statement we released on 25 May 2016 that we do not support any shuffling or reshuffling especially at the time going to the local government elections.  Our focus should be on building unity and campaigning for an overwhelming ANC electoral victory. We still believe that the whole matter was poorly managed.  The SACP has accepted the apology of the ANC in this regard.

On the issue of the redeployment of SACP Provincial Secretary in his capacity as an ANC member of the provincial legislature the extended PWC further considered the following comprehensive package that will unify the Province as we do not believe that issues of deployments alone will bring about unity and cohesion in the Province:

1. A comprehensive inclusive alliance process to build and consolidate unity in the movement including reaching out to comrades affected by factionalism and orchestrated political divisions as well as the flouting of organisational processes during the nominations of councillor candidates.

2. Addressing hotspots and reaching out to communities that are aggrieved and intervening decisively on the challenges they face.

3.  A commitment to an alliance driven program to deal with factionalism in the province.

4. Joint alliance efforts and programs to address tensions that have resulted in killings of our comrades.

The PWC looked at the conditions within which this decision was taken, the reality that many of our townships and local communities are burning out of anger as a consequence of the above.

The Alliance is called to provide joint leadership to society, deepen and defend the gains of the National Democratic Revolution as we seek a new mandate from the people to consolidate a transformative revolutionary programme to improve the quality of their lives for the better. 

The SACP has alluded to the fact that without this possibilities of releasing its Provincial Secretary for such a deployment would have been a futile exercise and deemed as co-option – the SACP had otherwise in fact preferred that he would rather relinquish his position even as an MPL.

The SACP officials held a bilateral meeting with the ANC this morning and put forth these conditionalities. We are glad to announce that we found a common perspective and have since released a joint statement covering the broad spectrum of our agreement. In this regard, the SACP agreed to release its  Provincial Secretary, Comrade Themba Mthembu to the new deployment in the provincial executive and wish him well together with those appointed.

We call on our members and communities at large to support this collective intervention to build and strengthen unity of the movement and our communities, fight against factionalism, address community problems and political killings and deepen our revolution. 

The SACP takes pride in the principled stance of its Provincial Secretary, to refute any perceived co-option and lack of consultation.  We take this opportunity to thank him for bringing back this matter to the organisation for mandating processes. This should be the common practice going forward, a necessary substantive consultation process with the allies on strategic matters affecting our revolution including deployments which affect leaders of the SACP.

The Party will continue to communicate with its structures and affected communities on these and other new developments.

Statement issued by the SACP Moses Mabhida (KwaZulu-Natal) Province, 7 June 2016