Shaun Whittaker

Shaun Whittaker

In the face of multiple crises of profit-driven socio-economic systems that have driven millions of people in Africa into hopeless poverty, the urgent questions of our time are quite clear: How do we change the balance of class forces in favour of the working class? What are the radical reforms around which a program of mass action could be initiated? How do we form mass workers’ parties all over the continent? What about organisations of the jobless, the landless and the homeless, the more


Contrary to all the propaganda, Namibia’s SWAPO was a moderate Pan-Africanist party with close links to imperialism – especially the United States. This peasant-based party had a leadership that was uninterested in a determined armed struggle or the internal mobilisation of the Namibian working class. Its legacy in independent Namibia is appalling.

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What is required is a non-sectarian political party of the working class that could go beyond unionism to defend the aspirations of the entire social class, not only those few with full-time employment. So, the leftists ought to clearly distinguish between unionism and activism if the working class is going to become a class-for-itself.


Any Left-wing party that comes to power in Namibia, Zimbabwe or any peripheral country today would be in the exact same position as Syriza: It would lack the political and economic power to bring about radical changes. The reality of a global system policed by imperialism makes it impossible for poor countries to break with capitalism and to begin to build socialism.


The increasing popularity of SWAPO as reflected in the 2014 general elections results does not make sense, especially in a situation of ever-worsening socio-economic conditions and massive corruption. What it does show, however, is that liberal democratic balloting is not some neutral event but a reflection of power relations that serve as a camouflage for social inequality.


On the occasion of the 2nd anniversary of the passing away of Neville Alexander on 27 August 2012, it is proper to deliberate on the political strategy of nation building as this was the leitmotif of the ideological interests of that socialist activist.


The neoliberal policy stance of the African National Congress and the socioeconomic consequences of these policies mark the death of the conservative Black Nationalist movement. The working class and the revolutionary Left must now move away from ‘black consciousness’ to ‘mass consciousness’ to challenge social injustice.


South Africa's largest union has resolved to establish a socialist movement. While this is an attractive idea, it is important to note that mass workers' parties have been thwarted elsewhere. The Left might have to contemplate whether it wants to build a social-democratic mass workers’ party that will squander another 20 years ora revolutionary mass workers’ party that will engage in mass action.


There is persistent misrepresentation of the South African Left, that it did little while the Congress Movement engaged in the struggle against the apartheid regime. The historical record needs to be set straight

Namibia has scrapped primary school fees, a stark rejection of the World Bank’s neo-liberal fundamentalist education model imposed on the country, which denied many their basic right and resulted in vast social disparities