< Back

Declaration of the 1990 National Consultative Conference

16 December 1990

  1. The 1990 National Consultative Conference of the African National Congress has been convened on the soil of our country for the first time in thirty years. Our conference has brought together our freedom fighters and patriots from all over the world - from our camps, branches, from the underground, from overseas missions - to chart the course of our underground movement.

  2. We, 1603 delegates, have been inspired to pursue our strategic objective of transfer of power to all South Africans and to the construction of a democratic, non-racial, non-sexist, united South Africa as envisaged in the Freedom Charter.

  3. We unanimously and unequivocally rededicate ourselves to the four pillars of our revolutionary strategy, believing that there have been no fundamental changes in the political situation which would require a departure from our strategy.

  4. At the same time we are aware that we have, through the struggles of our people, succeeded in forcing the apartheid regime to accept that it can no longer rule in the old way. This has certainly introduced a new element to our strategic perspective.

  5. While we remain committed to exploring every possibility for a peaceful transition to a democratic South Africa, the apartheid regime has in recent months demonstrated that it is not committed to our objective of a democratic South Africa. The regime has its own agenda, that of retaining white domination in a new form. It is violating and distorting all its undertakings to the ANC and the people, as contained in the Groote Schuur and Pretoria Minutes.

  6. Our patience with this regime is running Out. We demand that the regime removes all obstacles in the way of genuine negotiations forthwith. We say to the international community and the regime that should real progress in this regard not be evident, we shall not hesitate to direct the NEC to suspend talks.

  7. We take this opportunity to remember all our fallen heroes and heroines. We salute our cadres in the camps, those in exile, those in underground structures, in MK, those in hiding and those in apartheid prisons and on death row for their sacrifices and undiminished dedication. We call on the regime to stop hunting Ronnie Kasrils and other comrades in hiding. We commit ourselves to defending our comrades.

  8. A special tribute is extended to our people in the rural areas, whose spirit of resistance in the most difficult conditions has inspired us over the years. We are painfully aware of our continued failure to give due attention and resources to the organising our rural people and their struggles. This we will rectify.

  9. Our courageous people in all parts of South Africa, men and women, have been the main architects for the crumbling of apartheid. As we stand on the threshold of the most challenging period of our struggle, we declare that 1991 will be a year of MASS ACTION FOR THE TRANSFER OF POWER TO THE PEOPLE. We believe that only our organised and militant people can write the final chapter of our struggle. We, dedicated cadres of the ANC, commit ourselves to tirelessly mobilising and organising our people for the prosecution of their historical task of finally bringing about a democratic, united, non-racial, non-sexist South Africa.