White monopoly capital not the enemy - ANC

Johannesburg - The ANC has rejected white monopoly capital as the enemy.

ANC national executive committee (NEC) member Joel Netshitenzhe said nine of its eleven commissions at the policy conference agreed after intense discussions on monopoly capital.

He said the relationship between the ANC and capital as well as monopoly capital was one of unity, cooperation and contestation, a resolution adopted at the 2007 Polokwane elective conference.

"There are areas in which we seek to cooperate with them. Higher rates of investment, job creation, skilling of people..."

He said there was also the challenge of monopoly companies undermining societal interest, such as collusion and high interest on product markets.

The proposal by the ANC means that President Jacob Zuma and by extension Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma's camp lost the first round of deliberations at the policy conference as they wanted the party to declare white monopoly capital as the enemy.

The proposal was being pushed through by KwaZulu-Natal, Mpumalanga, Free State and the Women's and Youth League.

Gauteng, Limpopo, Western Cape, Eastern Cape and Northern Cape disagreed.

"There is no reference to monopoly capital as an enemy of the ANC or an enemy of the National Democratic Movement. If they were the enemy, what do you do to the enemy? You destroy the enemy and so with our approach to monopoly capital, there might be areas of divergence. We need to regulate, and you need to discipline them where it is necessary," Netshitenzhe said.

Strategy and tactics, as well as organisational renewal discussions, are seen as a way to gauge support ahead of the December elective conference as they are discussed by all 11 commissions. 

'Global phenomenon'

Nine of the 11 commissions felt that the phenomenon of monopoly capital is a global one and manifests itself differently, he said.

"In that context, it would therefore not be correct to characterise ours simply as white monopoly capital. That relationship would apply whether it’s Japanese, Indian, white or whatever category you can think about..."

He, however, said South Africa could not turn away from white dominance in the economy, which includes the context of assets, the income of the professions as well as other privileges inherited from the past.

Netshitenzhe said the view of the other two commissions which believed that monopoly capital should be racially classified as White Monopoly Capital was also within its report which would be presented to branches to deliberate. 

"It is agreed that discussion will continue in the branches for resolution at the national conference."

He said the state of the economy and weaknesses in the ANC and its allies mean that the balance of forces were not in favour of the forces of change.

"The decisions that are taken as recommendations at this conference will be fundamental to ensuring that the ANC enhances its organisational integrity and is able to speed up the process of change. If that does not happen, then there will be major and terrible consequences for the ANC."

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