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The Plan, as it is commonly known, argues that we need to connect efforts to build our organisation with struggles for quality jobs in order to strengthen the power of the working class.
This Ninth National Congress is critical for the future of COSATU because it serves as a key platform to assess our work based on the programme we adopted three years ago. Our central task is to answer crucial questions: Are we still on course in relation to the implementation of our Plan?
How do we judge our performance in the last three years? What can be done between and to cement areas of success and address weaknesses? The three pillars of our Plan are: Defending our political gains and opening space in society and the Alliance for a working-class agenda.
Systematic and rigorous implementation of an organisation-building programme so that COSATU has grown to four million members by the Tenth National Congress, with improved ability to serve our members, protects vulnerable workers and maintains unity and political coherence.
Retention and creation of quality jobs based primarily on work around sector strategies. The Eighth Congress was a success, not only because it adopted the plan, but because it positioned COSATU in relation to the challenges of the time.
It helped to unite the Alliance and to focus the movement as a whole on the challenge of defending our electoral victories.
Immediately after the Congress, the Alliance achieved a landslide victory for the ANC in the elections.
We have made some progress in all the areas identified by the Plan. Still, to achieve our goals by will require much more consistent efforts. Our key weaknesses remain inadequate capacity, inconsistency and perhaps even a lack of political will t o implement key decisions of the Federation.
As part of the preparations for the Congress debates, we developed and circulated a political discussion paper summarising and analysing developments over the past three years, located in broader trends over the twelve years since the democratic transition.
We committed ourselves to asserting a working class agenda in the programmes of the state; deepen social dialogue and participatory democracy; revise the electoral system and ensure that the Alliance drives transformation. We set criteria to assess the Alliance and guide our work in strengthening it in line with our vision.
As part of this, we agreed to mobilise our members and the public strongly around the elections. We committed ourselves to all-round ideological work to assert and defend the ideas of the working class in the public arena and to deepen the class-consciousness of workers.
This report first reviews the political environment. It analyses key elements, including the nature of the state and class formation, as well as political developments since the Eighth Congress.
The second section reports on political engagements. The political environment 2. At the Eighth National Congress we argued that the Alliance and even the ANC operate mostly as an adjunct to the state, instead of being the driver. This has not changed in the past three years.
At the same time, economic power remains firmly in the hands of white monopoly capital. In this context, we can argue that we have a kind of the dual power, with political power in the hands of the democratic forces and economic power residing with white capital.
This does not mean that no progress has taken place. Since the Eighth Congress, the ANC increased its electoral strength, and now controls all provinces and indeed most of the local governments.
Its political and electoral power is uncontested. In additionwe have seen substantial efforts to transform the state, especially the major social services, to meet the needs of the majority.The Online Writing Lab (OWL) at Purdue University houses writing resources and instructional material, and we provide these as a free service of the Writing Lab at Purdue.
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