On Wednesday, 9 December the government of South Africa was thrown into a new crisis when president Jacob Zuma unexpectedly fired his finance minister, Nhlanhla Nene and replaced him with David van Rooyen, a little known ANC backbencher. This decision was so unexpected that neither the ANC nor members from his own cabinet were aware of it. The events over the four days which followed, once again shook the country to its foundations and ushered in a new period in the class struggle.

On Friday, 23 October, South Africa’s president, Jacob Zuma, announced that there will be no increases to student university fees for next year. This was a clear attempt by the government to contain a movement which has became too big to control.

This year  marks 132 years since the death of Karl Marx. Marx had profound influence on the course of human history and his ideas are more relevant today than they were when he was alive. In the words of his collaborator and comrade,Friedrich Engels: "His name will endure through the ages, and so also will his work''. But the question which this article wish to address here is: why should the revolutionary youth of today discuss and study the ideas of Marxism,and what is its relevance for the youth and workers of South Africa?

We are pleased to announce the publication on the internet of Richard Monroe's history of the ANC movement. This pamphlet, written in the 1980s, deals extensively with the struggles of the 1950s and the tactics adopted by the middle-class ANC leaders, who favoured negotiations with the "progressive" section of the capitalists. It was originally printed in issue 13 of Inqaba ya Basebenzi ("Workers' Fortress"), the publication of the Marxist Workers' Tendency of the African National Congress in March 1984.

On 25 June year, President Jacob Zuma released the report of the Farlam Commission, which was appointed by the government to investigate the killings of 44 people at the Lonmin mine in Marikana in August 2012. This includes the massacre of mineworkers on 16 August that year, when the police opened fire on the striking workers, killing 34 and injuring 78 more.

Over the recent period, beneath the appearance of relative calm in the South African Communist Party, serious divisions have began to open up. These divisions are manifesting themselves along fault lines which have existed for long periods of the party's existence. Now, under the raging organic crisis of Capitalism, the turbulence which accompanies it, the resultant instability in the ANC-led Tripartite Alliance and the emergence of formations to the left of the ANC, the cracks in the party have began to open wider and wider. The SACP now finds itself struggling to fight for its relevance. Sooner or later all the divisions must burst into the open which will further destabilize it and the already turbulent alliance.

Recent comments by South Africa’s most powerful business tycoon, Johann Rupert, gives interesting and penetrating insights into the current state of mind of the bourgeoisie. Rupert is clearly very disturbed by the current state of affairs, even admitting that they are keeping him awake at night.

In a highly significant event, delegates to the 15th National Congress of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) have voted to remove the incumbent general secretary, Frans Baleni and replace him with a clear left wing candidate, David Sipunzi. The result, which came as shock to many, is a heavy blow to the class collaborationist right wing of COSATU, the main trade union federation. This shakeup will have wide ramifications not only in the trade union movement, but also in the Tripartite Alliance.

The recurrence of the barbaric violence against mainly African immigrants in some parts of South Africa over the past week has once again shone the spotlight on the worsening situation which is developing in the country. These reactionary attacks go against the whole grain of the history of the South African workers’ movement which was mainly born out of the need to combat this kind of racist and xenophobic violence and discrimination and to unite all oppressed layers of society under the umbrella of working class solidarity.

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