The Communist Party of Swaziland (CPS) is to be formed in the kingdom on 9 April 2011, it was announced today (27 March 2011).
The CPS says it will work to ‘bring about a National Democratic Revolution in Swaziland’.
At present all political parties are banned in Swaziland, which is ruled by King Mswati III, sub-Saharan Africa’s last absolute monarch.
CPS says, ‘We believe, however, that Swaziland needs a Communist Party in these days of intensified protest against the regime in order to present a socialist alternative and perspective to the Swazi people. The CPS is a Marxist-Leninist party that struggles for socialism.’
Below – published in full – is the founding statement of the CPS.
Founding Statement Of the Communist Party of Swaziland
A major step forward in the history of Swaziland has been made with the establishment of the Communist Party of Swaziland (CPS).
This is a historic move that the CPS and its allies feel will contribute greatly to the struggle for freedom by the Swazi people against the monarchic autocracy of Mswati III and the rapacious capitalist system in the country.
The CPS has been formed by Swazi women and men who have witnessed a virtual war against the Swazi population, which is burdened by political and social oppression, as well as enforced mass poverty, the worst HIV-AIDS pandemic in the world and a horrifically low level of life-expectancy.
We aim to end this murderous degradation of our people, whose labour and capacity are being exploited by the monarchic autocracy and the capitalist system in order to enrich the ruling class.
Time is running out for the Mswati regime. It can no longer sustain its rapacious exploitation of Swaziland’s economy and its people. Only a new order based on a fully democratic dispensation that involves all of the Swazi people as equal partners will be able to halt and reverse the ruin imposed on our country.
We join Swaziland’s mass democratic movement for change, and pledge our full support to building that movement, led by PUDEMO and SWAYOCO, to bring about a National Democratic Revolution in Swaziland.
We believe, however, that Swaziland needs a Communist Party in these days of intensified protest against the regime in order to present a socialist alternative and perspective to the Swazi people. The CPS is a Marxist-Leninist party that struggles for socialism.
We do not want to see the monarchic autocracy reformed or dressed in democratic trappings to appease the liberal sensibilities of any interest group or the international community.
We seek a complete end to the autocracy and the establishment of a free, democratic multi-party system. We seek a revolutionary transformation to society that ends poverty, disease, the oppression of women, and the stifling of the youth.
We believe that such a revolution will enable the Swazi people to begin to build a socialist society, in which there is full equality and pervasive democracy.
The Swazi people face a deep crisis of survival. The CPS will campaign for
· The unbanning of all parties and organisations, and institution of an interim government drawn from all parties, organisations, churches and trade unions that will set about creating the conditions for free and fair democratic elections in Swaziland.
· The ending of the monarchic autocracy and the transfer of much of its wealth to the immediate tasks of fighting disease and the worst aspects of poverty (such as access to water and sanitation); the confiscation of all crown property
· The dismantling of the hated tinkhundla system
· The isolation of the Mswati regime by all countries of the international community and the suspension of foreign business activity until the autocracy is dismantled
· The rights of all workers to organise into trade unions, that are in turn empowered to join the political process individually and through their unions and federations
· Access to land by all who wish to work it under a controlled system of collective rights – in the short term to tackle the severe food scarcity that afflicts 40% of the population
· An emergency food security strategy, linked to the above demand
· The creation of radical processes to empower women in society, and to make women’s health a top priority in health care
· The creation of local workers and peasants organisations to articulate the needs of the urban and rural poor
· The creation of an emergency economic, industrial and employment strategy to begin to find a way out of the crisis brought about by the Mswati autocracy and the ruling class.
These are our immediate demands to address the current situation. They are spelled out in more detail in the CPS’s programme and strategy.
The CPS is a democratic, non-racist, non-sexist organisation that fights for the interests of the workers and the poor to bring about a just society – a socialist society – in Swaziland. The CPS is open to all Swazi’s who agree with its principles and who adhere to its programme, constitution and are willing to take part in its work.
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