By Chairman Omali Yeshitela, African People’s Socialist Party and African Socialist International
Published Jan 16, 2013
Every three years the African People’s Socialist Party is required by our Constitution to turn over the affairs and direction of our Party to its membership through the convening of our Congress, the highest body of the Party. The Sixth Congress of our Party is planned to occur in St. Petersburg, Florida from December 7 – 11, 2013, three years after the historic 5th Congress that occurred in Washington, DC in July of 2010.
The Party Congress is one of the most important events that distinguishes the African People’s Socialist Party from a host of other organizations that present themselves to African people as leaders of our movement.
It is the most significant event to give meaning to the democratic component of democratic centralism, the main organizational principle of the African People’s Socialist Party.
Here is where the most important policies and the general direction of the Party are democratically determined, justifying the right of the Party’s elected leadership and our general membership to demand unflinching unity and steeled discipline in the work to win the liberation and socialist unification of Africa and African people worldwide.
It is at the Party Congress that the most important leaders of the Party are elected and the general line and strategy of the Party are developed and ratified. It is at the Party Congress that leaders of our Party are required to report to the membership, thereby validating their leading positions through an examination of their work.
Our Party was founded in 1972 at a time when the smell of cordite from the police assassinations of our leaders and the perennial raids of movement organizations was pervasive. It was a time when political terror was the order of the day, making it difficult to conduct our Congress on time for several years.
Because of this, and our inexperience, it was nine years after our founding that our First Congress was held in 1981 in Oakland, California. Since then we have only held four others with the last being in 2010.
The Party’s 5th Congress was historic. It put us on a firm path of living up to our Constitutional mandate to hold our Congress and fight for the ability of the Party’s membership to exercise its right and responsibility for leading the Party and determining our general direction.
Now, with the capitalist social system, founded on the enslavement and capture of Africa and African people, in a severe state of crisis, its lifeblood being spilled throughout the villages and communities of the Middle East and South America; with formerly subject countries, especially China and India, becoming serious intra-imperialist contenders with traditional white imperialist power for regional and world hegemony and with the imperialist powers of Europe and North America cannibalizing their own populations while locking the world in a state of permanent warfare, the need for the Party’s 6th Congress is glaring.
Daily, rulers of a parasitic world capitalist economic system show a determination to maintain the status quo of poverty and oppression for the world’s majority, a situation where 80 percent of the people of the world exist with ten U.S. dollars or less per day and half the people try to survive with the pittance of two dollars and fifty cents per day.
The wars of Hollande, Obama, Merkel, et al, are blood-drenched looting expeditions being waged by terrorist democratic-negating thugs in the name of ending terror and exporting democracy to their victims.
All the imperialists, those that are the traditional white parasitic slavers and colonizers, as well as the hungry newcomers, some of which were themselves recent victims of white imperialism, are engaged in a frenzied, contentious escalation of African exploitation to rescue themselves from the current economic crisis or to thrust themselves into greater economic significance.
The work of the African People’s Socialist Party in the struggle against imperialism has clearly progressed on every front since our 5th Congress.
It is work for the total liberation and socialist unification of Africa and African people under the leadership of the African working class aligned with the poor peasantry.
Our presence is becoming more pronounced and significant on the Continent of Africa and we are changing the political terrain throughout Europe with our work in England, France, Belgium, Sweden and several cities in Germany.
We are learning new lessons daily on the Caribbean Front with a consolidated presence in the Bahamas that has assumed leadership for all our work in the region. And, every day we continue to build in North America, primarily in Canada and the U.S.
The Party’s constituent organizations are also flourishing. InPDUM, the revolutionary mass organization of the Party is actively building on three or four continents.
Similar growth and activity characterize the existence of the Party’s development arm and we have made major leaps in our economic development planning and resource-generating component.
The work of the African People’s Solidarity Committee (APSC) and the solidarity efforts directly under its leadership has for years now been responsible for exposing and undermining the traditional opportunism within the parasitic white nation left movements. Currently APSC is actively planning to extend its influence and presence throughout Europe.
The Burning Spear, Uhuru News and Uhuru Radio are growing staff and building infrastructure that promise the highest level of development and professional capacity in the history of the Party. Our ability to engage our colonial oppressors in the war of ideas increases daily.
All of this work has been built off the Party’s One People! One Party! One Destiny Campaign that is a product of the Party’s 5th Congress and is designed to bring thousands of people into the Party and our constituent organizations.
This is a campaign that will culminate with our 6th Congress. It is the campaign that will guarantee that the organizations, committees, members and especially the Party leaders carry out the resolutions and mandates of the 5th Congress.
It was at the 5th Congress of our Party that the direction of the Party was developed, resulting in the progress already made. That Congress was held under the theme of One People! One Party! One Destiny!
The history of failing to follow up on past Congress determinations and mandates is being overcome through the One People! One Party! One Destiny! Campaign.
Among other things the campaign has concentrated all our forces and resources directly under the leadership of the office of the Chair.
This allows the Party to guarantee that all the Congress mandates, resolutions and protocols be adhered to and that, where necessary for the advancement of our work, others are created.
We are engaged in extraordinarily intense and hard work. Whatever romance and glamour associated with struggle that may have previously clouded the perception of our members are being fast dispelled, displaced with an appreciation for the science of society and revolution and the necessity for hard work.
This is a Call to members and supporters of the African People’s Socialist Party to close ranks with the Party to build the 6th Congress of our Party.
As dialecticians we understand the significance of the 6th Congress as a continuation of the progress stemming from the 5th Party Congress and the victories of the One People! One Party! One Destiny! Campaign.
We recognize that our Congress is not occurring in a vacuum, but that it is being influenced by events in the world that are battering imperialism even as the Congress intends to serve the purpose of liberating and uniting our Africa and our people.
As materialists we recognize that none of the discussions and analyses we initiate means anything without the hard work to bring our liberation to fruition.
We know the success of our Congress will be determined by the practical unity we demonstrate in the form of hard work to build it, to bring the hundreds of Africans to the Congress that are demanded by this critical historical moment.
We know that no oppressed people in history has ever won liberation without first creating an organization of steeled cadres with unflinching commitment to liberation. Our Congress is the gathering place for these cadres and others we would have join our ranks.
The African People’s Socialist Party is unique in its fidelity to the participation of the people in determining our revolutionary destiny.
The Party Congress is one of our proudest accomplishments, not only for what it means for our Party, but also for what it means for the advancement of our struggle for liberation and socialist unification as a continent and as a nation.
Preparation for the Congress is the most important work our Party is involved in.
It is the work that should consume all our leaders and members and all our committees and constituent organizations.
It is the work that should mobilize all Africans, all oppressed peoples and all our allies that are committed to a different world where the oppressed and the exploited will become the new rulers of a world in transition to a society without national oppression and class exploitation.
The fact is that in many ways the Congress is the “splash party” that results from the hard pre-Congress work.
It is during the Congress-building work that the true nature of the Party is revealed and the mettle of its leaders tested.
This is the time when, in the middle of an active contest with our colonial oppressors and class enemies, leaders and members of the Party must accomplish the impossible.
Even while doing our regular Party work we have to build the Congress because it is the Congress that will validate all our other work and set the course for the future.
Build the Sixth Congress of the African People’s Socialist Party!
Build the African People’s Socialist Party!”