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ANC 48th National Conference

Durban, July 1991

Final Resolution on Strategy and Tactics

THIS NATIONAL CONFERENCE OF THE ANC

NOTING

  1. That the fundamental elements of apartheid colonialism remain in place
  2. That the repeal of some apartheid laws has left the basic political,social, gender and economic relations of oppression and exploitation intact
  3. That in many respects the conditions of the oppressed people have deteriorated, with violent attacks on our communities, lowering of living standards, increasing homelessness, unemployment, retrenchment, a deepening of the educational crisis to disastrous proportions and other social evils

NOTING FURTHER:

  1. That the struggles of the people and the support of the international community have created the possibility of a negotiated resolution of the conflict in our country
  2. That the regime has been obliged to accept the fact that it does not have the strength to sustain apartheid in the old way and has therefore had to enter into talks with the ANC
  3. That despite the advances made by the liberation movement, the De Klerk regime still retains the capacity to implement countermeasures on a whole range of fronts, and that its objective is to retain the essentials of white domination under a new guise
  4. That the regime seeks to discredit and weaken the ANC and other democratic forces, claim legitimacy for itself as the main agent of change, divide the forces of liberation while broadening its own base, pacify the masses and thus become the supreme manager of the current period

AND BELIEVING THAT:

  1. The struggle for the elimination of apartheid colonialism should intensify until a democratic constitution and government are in place
  2. It is in the interest of the people of South Africa that the negotiating process should seek to place political power in their hands in the shortest possible time.
  3. The negotiating process should involve the widest spectrum of the people and their various democratic formations ensuring that they determine the final outcome through mass action.
  4. Negotiations must be conducted on the basis of consultation an accountability between the leadership and ANC structures
  5. Negotiations can only succeed in the context of intensified struggle on all fronts and in combination with other forms of struggle.

REAFFIRMS

That the ANC remains committed to the elimination of apartheid in all its manifestations and the creation of a united, democratic nonracial and nonsexist state.

BELIEVING THAT SUCH a transformation can only be achieved through the all round intensification of struggle against the regime

COMMITS itself to strengthen and direct all four pillars of our struggle, to strengthen the ANC in negotiations, while simultaneously remaining prepared for any attempts by reactionary forces to defeat the process.

WITH REGARD TO THE FOUR PILLARS CONFERENCE BELIEVES THAT:

1.1 Mass organisation and mobilisation is at the centre of our struggle. 1.2 This entails ANC involvement,including actions through organs of people`s power, in day to day activities of the people on all fronts. Such action would also entail demands related t transition, particularly for a sovereign interim government an sovereign constituent assembly, and the question of the transfer o power. 1.3 That the ANC is a national liberation movement provider leadership to its members and the oppressed and democratic force of South Africa generally, over a wide range of issues. The ANC i not a political party. In formulating our policies for a democrat South Africa these should relate to mass struggles and provide opportunities for the masses to assert their just demands.
  1. The underground remains essential and needs to be strengthen since the process of change is not irreversible and violent acts counterrevolution against the forces of liberation and the oppressed people in general continue to be perpetrated
3.1 Armed struggle. Armed action has been suspended, but the arm struggle remains a pillar of our struggle. In a situation where the regime pursues or allows violence against us as part of negotiations strategy it is essential for us to strengthen people`s army, Umkhonto we Sizwe, contribute decisively building the defensive capacity of communities who are victims potential victims of the current reign of terror. 3.2 We also need to undertake various measures to prepare to build an army of a democratic South Africa
  1. The international pillar of our struggle has to be strengthened. Governments and international solidarity groups need to be given a clear understanding of the current situation and the perspectives of the ANC. The international community needs to continue their work against apartheid until a new democratic constitution is in place. At the same time the ANC needs to actively seek support of and pressure from the international community for an end to the violence against our people, the demand for a sovereign interim government,sovereign constituent assembly and a democratic constitution. In all its international work the ANC needs to ensure that it retains the initiative

CONFERENCE FURTHER RESOLVES

  1. To continue pursuing negotiations as a means towards achieving our strategic objective of transfer of power to the people
  2. To strengthen the ANC as a mass-based, democratic organisation, rooted amongst the people, through systematic organisation mobilisation
  3. To increase the capacity of the ANC to creatively lead the people in mass action, and for the masses to participate actively and take initiatives at various levels.

BELIEVING

That this process can be facilitated by the strengthening of the tripartite alliance of the ANC, SACP and COSATU, as a fighting force at national, regional and local levels.

RECOGNISING

That the goals of the ANC can best be achieved by uniting the broadest range of people behind its democratic goals.

COMMITS ITSELF

  1. To move speedily towards the building of a broad patriotic front to further the achievement of common democratic goals
  2. And to go beyond this and draw in as many categories of people and organisations behind the broad goals of non-racialism, non-sexism and democracy
  3. To devise and implement a programme of action aimed at keeping the initiative in the hands of the democratic forces and compelling the government to meet our just demands.

EXPRESSES ITS DETERMINATION

  1. That our strategies and tactics will be informed by the experience of all our people, including those sections of our population which are not sufficiently involved in the ANC
  2. Our strategy and tactics will also be informed by the experience of women, especially African women who are the most oppressed section of our population.
  3. That the organisation will increase its emphasis on rural areas and bantustans and all other areas being given insufficient attention
  4. To marshall the necessary personnel and resources to implement an effective negotiations programme
  5. That the period ahead will be one of intensified struggle that will see decisive steps towards achievement of our basic demands leading towards the transfer of power to the people and peace under a democratic constitution.