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Communiqué of the meeting of the National African Federation Chambers of Commerce (NAFCOC) and the ANC

27 May 1986

During the weekend of 24th to 26th May, 1986, delegations of the National African Federated Chambers of Commerce (NAFCOC) and the African National Congress, led by their two Presidents, met in Lusaka, the capital of the Republic of Zambia.

Meeting in a cordial atmosphere, the two delegations discussed a wide range of issues of concern to all the people of South Africa. The two delegations agreed that an urgent task facing all our people is to find a solution to the crisis which has engulfed our country.

In this regard, the NAFCOC delegation explained that their organisation has, for many years, been involved in various efforts to encourage a peaceful resolution of the conflict which is now tearing our country apart. NAFCOC is committed to continuing these efforts. For that reason - and acting on the decisions and spirit of its national council, which were endorsed by its 21st annual conference - NAFCOC decided to send a delegation to meet the leadership of the ANC. Bound by its own decisions, NAFCOC will continue to act as a catalyst and will, as before, seek contact and dialogue with other people within the broad spectrum of the leaders of our country.

The NAFCOC delegation explained that the purpose of these efforts is to help create the situation when it will be possible for all genuine leaders of the people of South Africa to enter into dialogue aimed at a just and agreed resolution of the fundamental problems facing our country. The delegation further explained that organisations that are currently banned as well as leaders that are imprisoned necessarily have to be part of these discussions if the dialogue is to be meaningful.

The NAFCOC delegation also explained that, as an organisation of black business people, its members are affected by all the problems facing the black community in general. NAFCOC is therefore committed to do everything in its power to ensure that the black people of our country live in freedom and equality with our white compatriots.

The ANC expressed its appreciation for the initiative taken by NAFCOC to enter into dialogue with it and to discuss these vital issues. The ANC explained its own commitment to strive for a united, democratic and non-racial South Africa, and explained that it sees NAFCOC as playing an important role in the creation of such a society within the context of the decisions of its own national conference.

The delegations agreed that the meeting constituted a valuable experience which helped to clarify the respective contribution each organisation was making in the effort to create a peaceful, happy and prosperous society.