South Africa: It’s your opportunity to make history!

Alec Thraves

There may be a big struggle to raise the finances for the Workers And Socialist Party (WASP) general election campaign but there was no shortage of enthusiasm at the WASP manifesto launch in South Africa on 29 March.

The socialist programme outlined by WASP’s working class and trade union candidates at their rally gives hope to the millions of impoverished and oppressed South Africans who are looking for an alternative to the corrupt, pro-capitalist ANC government at the general election on 7 May.

Other, ‘populist’, parties may get a lot more media publicity than WASP but in the trade unions, among community campaigners, in the workplaces, colleges and universities, WASP is getting an increasing echo from the best militant fighters across South Africa.

The historic decision by Numsa, the metalworkers union, to withdraw support from the ANC and to prepare the way for a new workers’ party in the future underlines the political and social turmoil gripping South Africa.

At its special conference, last December, Numsa outlined several criteria necessary for such a party to gain its support, including a working class membership, democratic structures and a programme that includes nationalisation of the mines and other key areas of the economy.

WASP will be the only party contesting the general election that meets these criteria.

With Moses Mayekiso, the first general secretary of Numsa, as WASP’s presidential candidate and number one on the WASP election list, then thousands of Numsa members and trade unionists can be attracted towards the party.

WASP’s election deposits alone cost a staggering £19,000 and that is before a single leaflet is printed! Over the next five weeks, hundreds of thousands of leaflets need to be produced along with finding the money to meet all the other campaign expenses.

Now is the opportunity for socialists and trade unionists in Britain and internationally to help make history in South Africa by giving WASP the resources to get genuine socialists elected on 7 May.

Our target is to raise £4,000 in Britain and send it off to WASP immediately!

WASP, even in its infancy, has been a great inspiration to socialists in Britain. Similarly the campaign to build TUSC in Britain over the past few years has inspired South African socialists.

As well as giving our urgent international support to WASP we must also raise the funds necessary to stand as many TUSC candidates as possible in May’s local elections in England.

We are making big strides forward in offering working class people in South Africa and in Britain a socialist alternative to the bankrupt capitalist parties and we cannot allow a lack of resources to derail that movement!

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