Tag: Socialist

Labour Day

Labour Day Featured

These are very hard times! The cost of living is skyrocketing, jobs are being lost and becoming fewer and fewer, the few remaining jobs are being degraded and increasingly unsecure.

But in the midst of all these difficulties, challenges and sufferings let’s not forget that the workers have given us whatever we have, made us what we are, and will make us what we hope to be; and we thank them for all, and above all for giving us eyes to see, hearts to feel and voices to speak for the workers.

Labour Day is a good day to rest the hands and give the brain a chance – to think about what has been, and is, and is yet to be.

The way has been long and weary and full of pain, and many have fallen by the wayside, but the Unconquerable Army of Labour is still on the march and as it rests on its arms today and casts a look ahead, it beholds upon the horizon the first glowing rays of the Social Sunrise.

The Socialist Party Zambia and the Trade Union Movement must be one today in celebration of Labour Day and pledge each other their mutual fidelity and support in every battle, economic and political, until the field is won and the Workers are strong and in control. Forget not the past on Labour Day!

Comrades, this is the day for Workers to think of the Class Struggle and the Ballot—the day for Labour to clasp the hand of Labour and girdle the globe with the International Revolutionary Solidarity of the Working Class.

We are all one—all workers of all lands and climes. We know not colour, tribe, nor creed, nor sex in the Labour Movement. We know only that our hearts throb with the same proletarian stroke, that we are keeping step with our class in the march to the goal and that the solidarity of Labour will vanquish exploitation and Humanize the World.

It gets dark sometimes but the morning comes. Don’t lose hope, don’t give up!

Fred M’membe
President of Socialist Party [Zambia]

A Message from the Socialist Party President to the President Elect

A Message from the Socialist Party President to the President Elect Featured

The day after the elections, I wished our President-elect and his party well, I do so again.

Socialists are patriots and we wish to see our country succeed, with or without us. We wish to see the economy and the living conditions of our people improve. There has been a lot of talk about national unity. And the focus has mainly been on tribalism and regionalism. The ultimate strength of our country will lie not in the power of our security and defence forces or financial resources but will lie in the unity of our people.

Speaking of Kwa and Ku, I am absolutely convinced that as long as there is enormous inequality among the people of our country, there can’t be any meaningful unity. A country that has enormous social differences, inequality and social injustice or one where millions of people are unemployed, lack medical attention or have no schools, have no food cannot have meaningful national unity.
The existence of a glaring disparity in income levels indicates an intolerable imbalance in the way wealth and resources are distributed. Our reality is such that poverty levels in some of our provinces are above 80 per cent and rural poverty averages 76.6 per cent.

History abounds with instances where the rich and powerful have brought about their own downfall by refusing to recognize in good time the legitimate demands of the majority. And as long as this gap remains at its current scandalous level, the future of our country is at risk and our people will look for alternative leadership.
By tolerating such high levels of poverty, the Zambian economy undermines the common good, and fails to demonstrate the solidarity that our shared human dignity demands and consequently undermines national unity.

Politicians can ask, plead for national unity, but unity comes only from the hearts of people, from establishing a system of governance anchored on honesty, equity, humility and solidarity.
And we should never forget that this country will not be a good place for any of us to live in unless it is a good place for all of us to live in.

To our new government – as you are ushered in we urge you to remember the cries of the Zambian people. The cries that the previous government ignored to their own peril.

You will soon be appointing your cabinet. This must be the beginning of a different trajectory for this country. A lean cabinet must be a priority. We hope this will be the beginning of the abolition of Ministries that can be government departments. As the Socialist party, we have stated that this country can be run effectively and efficiently by reducing the number of ministers from 22 to 10.

We promise to be a loyal opposition party – We will provide very strong checks and balances. It won’t be a one party state but we do recognize, that the journey to recovery will not be easy. Our voice will be heard loud and clear on all important national issues. For us, to see wrongs being committed, and not to speak will be a great betrayal to the Zambian people. Losing an election will not shut us up nor temper our resolve to call out the wrongs in our society.
For the sake of the Zambian people, we implore you to prove to us that you and the PF are not siamese twins.

Fred M’membe

US Military invasion of Venezuela highly possible

US Military invasion of Venezuela highly possible

A US military intervention of Venezuela is highly possible. The dynamics in American domestic politics are creating an environment in which the anti-Venezuelan forces are gaining an upper hand. This is a coalition involving US based Venezuelan dissidents, right-wing Latin American cartels and conservative Christian groupings. It is the type of groups President Trump is targeting in the bid to sustain domestic support for his administration and perform well in the forthcoming midterm elections. The heightened aggressiveness and impunity of the Columbian ruling elite, which currently serves as Washington’s blue-eyed boys in Latin America, has also helped to unite the Anti-Venezuelan forces and reawakened the possibilities of a full-scale military invasion.

In August 2017, President Trump had asked his foreign policy advisers about the possibility of invading Venezuela – a country whose economy was already crippled by sanctions and its leadership demonised as corrupt, narcotic peddlers and left-wing dictators. The suggestion to invade Venezuela had surprised even his advisors, including Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and National Security Adviser HR McMaster, both of whom have since left his administration. Similarly, even the Latin American leaders whose accomplice he sort were not ready for an invasion. However, the current team of advisors and Latin American right wing leaders are not as careful and cautious. There is growing excitement to finally destroy the Bolivarian revolution.

The disdain and hate for the socialist oriented Bolivarian revolution is understandable. When oil prices were high, Venezuela extended financial support to its poor Latin American and Caribbean neighbours. Even poor communities in the USA received energy subsidies from Citgo,a subsidiary of Venezuela’s state-owned Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A. Venezuela was becoming an example of a society where poor people could come out of poverty through a committed and egalitarian government policy. This is the opposite of the greed and individualism of neo-liberal capitalism. Venezuela was is not the example that is required in Latin America – just at the backyard of the USA! American imperialism fears the power of an enlightened and socialist inspired people more than anything else.

In his desire to invade Venezuela, President Trump is known to have alluded to what he considered past cases of successful gunboat diplomacy in the region. The invasions of Panama and Grenada in the 1980s were such examples. This is outright reckless. Panama and Grenada have hardly recovered from these invasions. The economic and social costs have been huge.

Venezuela may not be a military power, even by Latin American standards. However, the majority of the poor masses are supporters of the revolution. These are the key pillars in the defence of the country against foreign invasion. They have shaped the country’s defence doctrine to stress asymmetrical warfare: using insurgency to wear down the invading enemy forces over time. Venezuela will be more than Vietnam, Somalia, Afghanistan and Iraq. Millions will perish and American lives will recklessly be sacrificed. Hopefully sanity will prevail and humanity is spared such a macabre invasion.

Capitalism Bears the Seeds of Corruption

Capitalism Bears the Seeds of Corruption

By Faston Mwale

Recently, Zambia has been treated to a wide range of serious corruption allegations involving top government leaders. But accusations of illegal acquisition of wealth by senior public officers are not new in Zambia, what is new, however, is the level or the size of the acts of corruption committed. Not long ago, we heard about the massive scandal in which over $1million worth of drugs varnished at Medical Stores Limited, consequently placing the Ministry of Health at a high risk of discontinuation of funding support from the Global Fund. Inevitably, this would place over 1.2million people currently on HIV/AIDS and TB medical support programs in a precarious position. Part of the plundered resources are being invested in foreign countries at a time when unemployment levels in the country are at a record low. Our youths graduating from tertiary institutions are having to contend with a bleak future in which a prospect for employment is perceptibly small. In part and to a larger extent, this is what has given birth to gangsterism a phenomenon little known in the last two decades or so. This is how deleterious corruption can be.

What is at issue is the fact that Zambians hardly see anything wrong with corruption, as such we tolerate the vice rather than abhor it. The parasitic petty bourgeoise elite in the political leadership of the country seem to have managed to hypnotize us into docility. I dare say without any fear of contradiction that by virtue of our inordinate silence, we have become consummate accomplices to the vice of corruption. Resources meant for development are plundered with impunity. Unfortunately, those who loot the country’s resources are in many cases deified rather than condemned. Today, Zambia is ranked among the highly corrupt countries of the world at number 97. Zambia is the third hungriest nation on earth. Even in the face of these paralyzing statistics, we don’t seem to see anything wrong with corruption. The question is why?

One of the deformities of a capitalist system is corruption and as long as we remain clenched within the claws of capitalism, we shall continue to wallow in poverty in the midst of plenty. A system that thrives on unbridled greed and flourishes on cutthroat competition driven by an insatiable appetite to consume to satisfy naked self-interest cannot be said to be good. A system that ‘soaks’ the poor to enrich the rich must be superseded by a humane system that advances the values of justice, equity and peace in our societies.

Unfortunately, the majority of the political parties that we have in Zambia save for the Socialist Party have a neo-liberal capitalist character. They are appendages of the capitalist system. Perhaps, that is why it is unamazing to see a political leader sticking out his neck to openly justify and massage an act of corruption involving colossal sums of money. Instead of expressing disapproval to acts of corruption, he finds it acceptable to say, “boyi yaluka, bwesha, this issue has generated a lot of controversy.” I may ask, where is the morality in this type of leadership?

When our desperate youths engage themselves in ruthless attacks against each other as they compete for space in illegal mining activities, the government is conspicuously unmoved by such obnoxious events. All what government officials say is, “arrest them and throw them in jail” without ever caring to examine the class forces that dictate themselves into the crisis of the moment.

In the main, the crises that we are beginning to see today emanate from unfair distribution of resources made worse by dispossessions. Corruption which seems to have become a norm in Zambia has created wide income disparities. Given a Gini Coefficient of 57.5, Zambia is among the ten most unequal countries in the world. If interventions are not put in place to stem the growing income inequalities, gangsterism, crude forms of theft, ghastly murders, to mention a few will continue to haunt us. There is need, therefore, for a fundamental change in the way our country’s resources are managed, controlled and owned. A leadership that denies its people, especially the youth, the dream of a decent future is as useless as the system that creates it and must be discarded altogether.

Forward to Socialism! VIVA SP