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Gauteng Special Provincial General Council: Declaration

6 August 2002


We, the seven hundred delegates to this Special Provincial General Council, representing all structures and sectors of the movement in Gauteng - ANC Branches, the Leagues, the Alliance and movement cadres deployed in municipalities, the provincial legislature and the national parliament - met today at the Johannesburg City Hall to launch the process of preparing for the National Policy Conference and 51st National Conference.

This PGC takes place on the first week of the national women's month and we commit ourselves to mobilise thousands of men and women to take up issues of gender equality and women emancipation in our communities and ensure that the struggle for the emancipation of women continues to occupy the central plank of the NDR.

1. On the unity of the ANC in Gauteng

Having emerged from the 8th Provincial Conference as a cohesive political force, we note with immense appreciation the good work and decisive leadership of the all our structures in keeping the ANC in Gauteng as a united movement that is seized with the tasks and challenges of mobilising the masses and accelerate our efforts in quality service delivery, fighting poverty and creating jobs.

As PGC delegates, we commit ourselves fully to the efforts of building genuine unity in action and further commit ourselves to join hands with the PEC in ensuring that the ANC in Gauteng never again becomes infested with negative tendencies such as divisions, factionalism, breakdown of organisational discipline, fraudulent membership practices, corruption and in-fighting around positions and access to resources.

2. On the success of the Letsema Campaign in Gauteng

In keeping with the theme of the 8th Provincial Conference of "Unity in Action for Accelerated Change" and in response to the call made by President Thabo Mbeki on the occasion of the 90th Anniversary of the ANC on January 8th 2002, ANC structures, the Leagues and the Alliance, working in tandem with government, unleashed a massive campaign to mobilise more than 50 000 volunteers throughout the province behind the Letsema Volunteer Campaign in the past six months.

We note with great satisfaction that the Letsema Campaign has been led by the ANC in the midst of community efforts and struggles for local development and transformation, thus bringing us closer to the ideal of building the ANC Branch as the vanguard of the community. We further extend warm congratulations to those branches that were consistent during all the theme months.

3. On the unity of the Alliance in Gauteng

This PGC notes the efforts of the provincial leadership of the ANC, SACP, COSATU and SANCO in Gauteng to keep the Alliance more united than ever before on the programmatic and strategic challenges facing our movement, our country, our continent and the rest of the world. We call on the regional / district and branch/local structures of the Alliance to emulate the workings of the Alliance at a provincial level by making sure that there is unity of purpose through ongoing genuine engagement on all matters critical to the success of the national democratic revolution.

As PGC delegates, we recommit ourselves to do everything in our power to ensure that this revolutionary Alliance is strengthened and shall give no space to forces, on the right and the far left, whose agenda is to weaken, divide or even break the Alliance and ultimately derail the NDR. Whatever challenges we face in this era of democratic transformation that unfolds in a hostile globalising world, we reaffirm the relevance of the Alliance.
We recommit ourselves to the implementation of the resolutions of the National Summit, particularly the Ekurhuleni Declaration and further call on the Provincial Alliance partners to convene an urgent meeting to develop a Programme of Action.

We call on the Alliance structures to work in a way that avoids discussing differences in the media and instead use the mechanisms agreed to at the Ekurhuleni National Alliance Summit.

4. On the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD)

Having received a Report from the PEC on the state of preparations for the UN World Summit on Sustainable Development, with various activities taking place in Johannesburg on 17 August - 4 September 2002, the PGC takes immense pride in the fact that our country and province will be hosting this august event that has such critical implications for matters of the future of humanity and the earth.

We reaffirm the position that central to the discussions on Sustainable Development are the key questions of poverty eradication, human rights, environmental justice, equitable distribution of resources, global peace and fair trade. We commit ourselves to going out in our thousands to educate our people on the significance of the Summit for our country, Africa and the developing world and will do our best to mobilise them behind all the activities and programmes of the Alliance and the progressive forces in our country.

We support the declaration of the 31st August 2002 as the National Day of Action for Sustainable Development and Global Peace and call on all patriots to stand up and be counted by joining the Rally and March from Alexandra towards Sandton, as a popular expression of our demands to the developed countries in particular and governments in general to join the developing world in adopting a ten-year Programme of Action on Sustainable Development, with clear allocation of resources and implementation timeframes on all the issues highlighted earlier.

We make a call to all progressive people's organisations, trade unions, NGO's, religious, women's and youth organisations and all structures of civil society concerned with the well being of humanity and the earth to join us on that day to make our voices heard.

We further call on all our branches and different spheres of government to engage communities on issues such as environmental degradation (communities living on mine dumps and dolomitic land), our plans to provide access to basic services such as water and electricity, our plans to provide water and sanitation in informal settlements, our poverty eradication programme, the use of energy, etc.

5. On the preparations for the 51st National Conference

This PGC received a Report from the PEC meeting held on 02-03 August 2002, to specifically discuss preparations for the 51st National Conference. The main focus of the conference will be to consolidate People's Power in Action and mobilise communities to continue to embrace the spirit of Amavolontiya as we make this century a truly African century Afrika Ke Nako!!

As PGC delegates, we note the fact that the 51st National Conference will take place in the context of the 90th Anniversary of the ANC, one of Africa's premier revolutionary movements and the oldest on the African continent. As ANC cadres, we are humbled by the fact that our movement played a pioneering role in the development of NEPAD and its subsequent adoption at the historic launch of the African Union in Durban on the 9th July 2002. We appreciate the enormous responsibility entrusted on us. We declare that we are indeed very proud to be Africans and will spare no effort and energy towards making this century a truly African Century.

On the domestic front, our movement has been involved in major efforts to transform our society and improve the quality of life our people since the 1997 National Conference. We have spared no energy in doing the best we can to accelerate the transformation of the state, improving service delivery and bringing changes in the economy in a manner that will lead to sustainable job creation, as well as improving the safety and security of citizens. As cadres of the movement, we know that in all these areas there are strengths and weaknesses and as revolutionaries, we are not afraid to acknowledge challenges, because we believe in the principle of telling no lies and claiming no easy victories.

We enter the phase of preparing for our 51st National Conference conscious of the challenges we face both at home, on the continent and in the rest of the world. We are deeply inspired by the achievements of the past five years and greatly encouraged to tackle any weaknesses identified by our branches and communities with respect to the functioning of our organisation, state institutions and the shortcomings in the implementation of our social and economic policies.

We are confident that the 51st National Conference will succeed in reinvigorating the structures of the movement, strengthening and sharpening the ANC social and economic policy positions and identifying ways in which the democratic state could be further transformed and best positioned to lead social transformation, in partnership with the people.

In rigorously addressing and robustly debating all questions facing the 51st
National Conference, this PGC calls on all ANC structures in Gauteng to ensure that we safeguard the maximum unity of the movement. We declare that the unity of the movement and the Alliance is supreme if we are to tackle and confront the challenges facing South Africa in the next decade, leading up to the centenary of the ANC in 2012.

We emerge from this PGC absolutely determined to ensure that our branches and communities discuss key political, organisational and governance questions and we are uncompromising on ensuring the success of the 51st National Conference as a gathering of cadres committed to a fundamental social change in our country, our continent and the rest of the world!

Amandla! Phambili nga Mavolontiya!!