The Young Communist League of South Africa is a Marxist-Leninist youth wing of the SACP.

The YCL stands for:

Non Racism
Freedom
Equality
The socialisation of the ownership and control of the means of production
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Communist University - Political School Material

Young Communist League Message delivered at South African Communist Party 3rd Special National Congress by the National Secretary Comrade Mluleki Dlelanga

8 July 2015, University of Johannesburg Soweto Campus

Let me for and on behalf of the 4th National Congress National Committee and the rank and file membership of YCLSA, say receive special greetings from the beautiful young reds.

The Young Communist League welcomes this opportunity to speak to the delegates at the Special National Congress of the SACP. Comrade General Secretary and Comrades Delegates, we deliver this message to the SACP Special National Congress when the balance of forces has changed in the YCLSA Leadership since the 13th SACP National Congress as a result of the YCLSA 4th National Congress.

We first want to appreciate your understanding when the Central Committee took a conscious decision to convene Special National Congress later as to allow YCLSA to convene its 4th National Congress in December 2014. For that as the YCLSA of the SACP, we will remain indebted to the Party.

The Special National Congress is being convened at an appropriate time whether your consider time, space and conditions. This Special National Congress is convened when the Alliance Summit was convened last week ,when counter-revolution is underway , when the 1996 class project remnants are gaining confidence , when oppositions are bold and confident , when judiciary is on the offensive against congress movement decisions, when media has openly assumed the position of being an opposition party , when unemployment , poverty and inequality are the order of the day, when young people are being demobilized ,corrupted , and lumpenized , when some young people praise Adolf Hitler, and when the anti-communists and anti-revolutionaries are insulting the Party with the intention to liquidate it.

As Lenin said “the duty of the Young Communists is to learn, learn and learn “also as young communists we have learned that we must read, read and read, read the reality, read between the lines. Our reading on reality and between the lines came to our scientific conclusion that most of the people who attack the party do so for three reasons: They know less about the Party, They have been before the Disciplinary Committee or were not elected or expelled and they are influenced by someone who is affected by the above reasons.

Comrade General Secretary, as we said earlier we welcome this opportunity to speak with the delegates of the SACP Special National Congress who are drawn from the basic unit of the Party which is the voting district. We also want to take this opportunity to explain our program which is our contribution on building blocks for socialism, where we are intensifying youth mobilization for socialism and building fighting soldiers for Socialism. We feel that it is important to explain the key characters of fighting soldiers for socialism. We build fighting soldiers for socialism in line with our 4th National Congress theme by putting it into action “Intensifying youth mobilization for socialism”.

We declared on our 4th National Congress that we are fighting soldiers for socialism. This requires all of our members to understand what it means to intensify youth mobilization for socialism and what the characters of the fighting soldiers for socialism. As we mobilize and educate young people on our philosophy Marxism-Leninism, we are also building fighting soldiers for socialism. We build fighting soldiers for socialism which must be imbued with the following characteristics:

  • Know where our structures are at.
  • Know the leaders of the congress movement.
  • Know the congress traditions.
  • Know their neighborhood and act.
  • Defend democracy, understand the struggle for socialism and take forward the struggle for socialism.
  • Make education fashionable.
  • Know YCLSA constitution, policies and programme like as they know their ringtones.
  • Differentiate between individual and the organization.
  • Strong, militant, vibrant, disciplined and socialist in character.
  • Hate opportunism and corruption.
  • Defend the revolution at all material times.
  • Ready at all times to sacrifice for the YCLSA and never betray the organization.
  • Fulfill our revolutionary duty to build and expand Marxist-Leninist influence and hegemony among young people in all key sites of struggle, taking our cue from the Party programme the ‘South African Road to Socialism’

As we intensify youth mobilization for socialism as fighting soldiers for socialism, we are using a nail spirit. We know that when we use a hammer to drive in a nail, a single knock often may not be enough; we must keep knocking until it is well in place. Then we can proceed to knock the next one, and continue driving in nails till the job is completely done.

We know that if we knock here and there without focusing on the nail, we may end up squandering our efforts altogether. Our blue print is our basic unit i.e. a branch. If our blue print is good, factually based, scientifically sound and well-received by the working class youth we should keep working on it tirelessly, hence we launched the Second Phase of Operation Khula.

STATE POWER DEBATE

The state power debate is not a new debate; this debate was introduced by the Young Communist League in the 1st SACP Special National Congress in 2005 in Durban. In 2006, immediately after the Special National Congress of 2005, the Central Committee developed a discussion document on State Power raising a number of questions that we need to grapple with: these questions included amongst others.

  • How do we interpret the current turmoil within the ANC?
  • How should the Party intervene tactically and strategically into this conjuncture?
  • Should we align ourselves with some forces within the ANC against others?
  • What should be the Party’s medium to longer- term perspective on electoral participation?

As the YCLSA, we believe that some, if not all of these questions are more relevant today than were in 2006. In the 12th SACP Congress in 2007 resolved the following on State Power:

  • That the Alliance requires major reconfiguration if the NDR is to be advanced, deepened and defended.
  • That the Alliance must establish itself as a strategic political center, but that the reconfiguration of the Alliance must respect the independent role and strategic tasks of each of the Alliance partners.

In 2009 SACP Special National Congress in Polokwane, the debate on the SACP and State Power had all but disappeared on the basis of the important gains made in consolidating Alliance unity.

We once again bring this debate, which to us is our program to this Special National Congress asking two questions: Does the fighting unity that characterized the state of the Alliance then, still characterize the State of Alliance today? and Is the ANC still pursuing a National Democratic Revolution that is inextricably linked to the struggle for Socialism? If we can’t get answers now, we propose to that the Party should consider reconstituting the State Power Commission.

To us it is not even a debate it is our program to engage the Party as we fully understand that the mission of the Party is to seize and capture the state power, is for the elimination of capitalist system, the conquest of political power by working class to change property relations and agitating for Socialist Revolution.

When we engage on this debate we engage informed by this historic mission of communists and we need not rush or to be emotional as this debate is about the life of the Party. We therefore not under pressure of concluding this debate in this special congress with the interest of rushing ourselves to the next ballot booth. We also want to dismiss the Mail and Guardian assertions that the SACP is divided on this debate and how they want to sensationalize this debate among party structures and trying so hard in order for the Party to be isolated and to leave Alliance. The Party has long ago established a tradition of persuasion and consensus in a democratic way in the instance where there are differing opinions within its structures, and thus, we are able to amicably make decisions without dividing the Party.

We will continue to engage the Party to contest State Power till we obtain Socialism in our lifetime. We will do so with the firm belief that strengthening our presence within the state apparatus is one of the ways that the Party will remain on track in continuing with the building blocks of Socialism.

RELATIONS WITH SACP

Addressing the 13th SACP National Congress at University of Ungoye, Moses Mabhida Province, the re-establishing or founding National Secretary of YCLSA, Cde Buti Manamela on the relations between YCLSA and SACP “We are the YCLSA of the SACP. We are formed as a result of the constitution of the SACP. The dynamism of the relationship between the SACP and the YCL, its dialectic, constitutional, political and programmatic nature is what has made the YCL what it is, and similarly had an impact on the current and future nature of the SACP.

If we are not close to the leadership and structures of the SACP, who should we be close to? Helen Zille? Robert Mugabe? We have a platform to engage with our leadership. In fact, the average age of the membership of the SACP is youth. We will never define ourselves outside of the SACP because we are the SACP and its future. If we oppose the SACP in order to prove our autonomy, which we have as an integral part of the SACP, we will end up veering towards the oppositionists just because people claim that we are not independent.

Comrade General Secretary, young people in the YCL understands that we will do what Lenin instructed us to do. Learn! Learn and Learn! We do not suffer from the political and ideological learning deficiency to the extent that to prove that we have learnt, therefore reduce our role being to fight with the SACP in front of a conflict hungry media.

We understand that that this factory called the YCL, this university of beautiful young reds, this training ground for a future and socialist South Africa, just like all factories it will have its own factory faults, just like all universities it will have its own drop-outs, but we do our best at all times to produce the best proof cadres to take the baton from this leadership collective into the future.

Many young people are gradually finding hope in both the SACP and YCL`s slogans of "Socialism is the future: Build it Now" and "Socialism in our Lifetime". As more and more young people find themselves locked in a future without jobs, education, quality public healthcare; they realize that the nightmare of capitalism has to be brought to an end and that the future of socialism is inevitable”

This articulation is self- explanatory and need no more emphasis, that’s what we are. It is not only the duty of the Young Communists to defend the Party. It is also the duty of the Party to defend the Young Communist League, as the defense of the Young Communist League is the defense of the struggle for socialism. The Party should not allow anyone who speaks badly about YCLSA and the YCLSA should never allow anyone who speaks badly about the Party. As fighting soldiers for socialism we are prepared to barricade in defense of the Party.

Comrade General Secretary, we will be participating in the Plenary and on commissions. Our participation will be guided by both our resolutions and the theme for this Special National Congress” Communists to the front: unite the working class, our communities and our movement”. As we participate we will be engaging the Party to resolve on having a Party School, fully establishment of Party Discussion Forums at all levels, free, compulsory and qualitative education, transformation of judiciary, labour brokers and strenghtining of solidarity.

As we conclude our message we are highly inspired by the verse of Red Flag , this verse “ with heads uncovered swear we all , to bear it onward till we fall , come dungeons dark or gallows grim. This song shall be our parting hymn”. Our struggle for socialism is our lifelong commitment. The future lies within the youth not just the youth but the youth that understands their mission and well equipped to defend it. A youth that understands the impact of capitalism, the impact of corruption in depriving young people to arrive to socialism.

We are on the ground, we are not populists and we are not anarchists we are discipline.

We say no to Capitalism and yes to Socialism.

We wish you a successful and revolutionary Special National Congress.