THE LOSS OF THE NCB BANK

In 2009 NCB bank was close to failure, caused by the excessive borrowings by SVG government and associated government owned companies [and perhaps one or two government cronies].

In July 2010, the government borrowed EC$100 million from the Caribbean Development Bank [CDB], to reduce the otherwise insurmountable outstanding public sector debt at the NCB, and to facilitate a restructuring of the institution. [which in plain English means to repay the NCB bank for government borrowings both government and government corporate’, debts that were crippling the bank]

Gonsalves thanked the CDB in writing, saying they saved the collapse of the bank and possibly that of the East Caribbean currency union.

Gonsalves tried to pretend disposal of the bank was all part of a clever strategy on his part, this was in fact no more than a dire collection of lies.

Ref: published online /2010/10/04/st-vincent-government-privatises-state-owned-bank/

The terms of agreeing a loan to the government by CDB was that the major controlling shareholding in the bank must be disposed of to a third party [51%].

Gonsalves did not tell Parliament that the NCB had to be sold before his government could access the loan

If the government did not agree to the disposal, there would of been no CDB loan and eventually the NCB bank would of collapsed, in fact it was a very close call. The bank manager and government ministers begging radio stations and newspaper editors not to say or publish anything that would cause a run on the bank. Even the opposition party were approached and asked to stay mum, which like good patriots they did just that, only to be verbally abused and bombarded with lies later.

Gonsalves agreed a deal with the Saint Lucian finance group East Caribbean Financial Holding Company Limited (ECFH) which was completed in October 2010.

The deal included transfering 51% of the banks shares to ECFH, this was the major shareholding that gave them total control.

31 October 2010 was the date set for completion of the take over of NCB and its renaming as Bank of St Vincent & the Grenadines Limited.

The divestment of the remaining 49% of the NCB shares held by the government after the sale of 51% of the NCB bank commenced with the sale of the 812,312 shares, to the National Insurance Services, and 87,675 shares to the employees of the Bank [$899,995.00].

November 2010, Gonsalves said that the bulk of the EC$42 million (US$15.55 million) his government received for the 51 per cent of the NCB shares sold to ECFH will be allocated to the International Airport Development Company (IADC).

Ref: published online, /2010/11/19/national-commercial-bank-in-st-vincent-no-more/

Gonsalves said that as part of the agreement with CDB, when the EC$100 million (US$37.03 million) his government borrowed from the Caribbean Development Bank is paid into the NCB, the public sector debt will fall to EC$60 million (US$22.22 million). [this is the only admission by Gonsalves that the government had to borrow that CDB money to repay its debt to NCB]

The bank will then release to National Properties Limited (NPL) two parcels of state lands at Mt Wynne/Peters Hope, totalling 121.351 acres.

Ref: published online, /2010/11/19/national-commercial-bank-in-st-vincent-no-more/

NDP president and opposition leader Arnhim Eustace criticised the sale of the NCB, saying that Gonsalves was forced to privatise the bank after he mismanaged it.

Ref: published online, national-commercial-bank-in-st-vincent-no-more/ 

On 6 February 2013 the commencement of a public offering of shares 1,430,765 shares culminating in the closing of the offer on 25 January 2013, the shares were sold at the offer price of $8.64 per share and raised $12,361,810.00

Total sale of shares: $13,261,805.00

None of these transactions raised the money amount borrowed from the CDB [$100 million] to save the NCB. In fact I believe a big chunk of the initial loan money ended up in funding the Argyle Airport Project. Remember we still have to repay the $100 million [plus interest] borrowed from CDB, it was a loan, yet none of the sale proceeds of the sale of shares has been allotted to repay CDB, again it has gone into the airport.

I notice from the NCB accounts there were quite a few millions in bonds and treasury bills, I believe that many of the SVG bond and bill issues were under subscribed and the NCB bank and the NIS were made to buy the shortfalls, thus hiding them.

Gonsalves told the IMF: The government sold 51 percent of its stake in the NCB to Eastern Caribbean Holding Company (ECHC), with a further 29 percent to be sold in 2011; the government will retain a 20 percent share in the bank. [which turned out to be 2013]

The IMF wrote: The Caribbean Development Bank [CDB] provided US$37 million [EC$100 million] in Policy Based Loan, the bulk of the loan was used to clear public sector [government] none performing loans [NPLs] at the National Commercial Bank [NCB], a precondition for its purchase by Eastern Caribbean Holding Company [ECHC].

Ref: Page 6 IMF Report; http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/scr/2011/cr11349.pdf

Irrelevant to this matter;

The IMF also wrote: Only US$20 million of the total US$50 million expected from ALBA materialized, and the supplier credit for the purchase of coastguard vessels was cancelled because of financial problems.

Ref: Page 6 IMF Report; http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/scr/2011/cr11349.pdf

[I only include this because it was never made public, and shows the continuing problem Gonsalves was experiencing with ALBA since the WIKILEAKS expose’, another secret kept from the Vincentian people. In my mind the hiding of situations such as this, is akin to more lies, just piles and piles of lies]

Gonsalves told Parliament in January 2013 that as at Sept. 30, 2012 the public debt of St. Vincent and the Grenadines amounted to $1.31 billion, 6.9 per cent more than the figure as at September 2011.

Most believe that the Argyle Airport has all but bankrupted SVG. That’s if we should we even consider an inanimate object as doing something like that, perhaps its only the action of one very silly man, or even a group of fiscally ignorant political morons that have bankrupt SVG.

As a citizen I still want an answer to the question, what did Gonsalves mean when he told us Vincentians ‘he is here to finish the work of Maurice Bishop‘, what does that mean, what work is he referring to. Its so important, it could be the key to everything that is happening in SVG.

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BEACH AND DUNE SAND MINING IN SAINT VINCENT WILL RESULT IN LOSS OF LAND AND FLOODING

Sand and dune mining in Saint Vincent at Diamond beach by the government, will sooner than later result in the flooding of adjacent land, some of which is below sea level.

Taking of sand from this area is little more than a criminal act, and will result in destruction of peoples land and property. I have no doubt that the government are fully aware of the damage they are causing to the environment, and the problems that will undoubtedly appear in the very near future.

Our beaches are being mined for sand for a variety of uses (aggregate in concrete, fill, etc). The current practice is very destructive and poorly managed (or unmanaged), because if it was managed properly they would of never started, or stopped a long time ago.

This is a global phenomenon but in particular in the Caribbean Islands. This theft of beach and dune sand is a direct cause of erosion along the shorelines. It is very damaging to the beach fauna and flora, ruinous to beach aesthetics, and will undoubtedly cause environmental damage to other coastal ecosystems associated with the beach such as lowlands.

Beaches below the high water mark are the property of the government, crown lands. The sand dunes that have formed over the last thousand years are on land above the high-water-mark are owned by adjacent land owners and not the government [unless the government owns the adjacent land].

Another major impact of beach sand mining is the loss of protection from storms surges associated with hurricanes and tsunamis.

Some communities affected by the 2004 tsunami in the Indian Ocean had higher storm surges probably due to beach sand mining resulting in fatalities. Sometimes it is difficult to tell that a beach has been mined. Sand extraction becomes difficult to recognize as the beach readjusts to a new profile after a few storms. But historic accounts of beaches in the Caribbean often reveal that beaches have been narrowed considerably.

Beach and dune mining is particularly senseless in a time of rising sea levels, when sand is sorely needed as a storm energy buffer. Why would you remove natures sea defence when the sea levels are due to rise over the next few years. We need more defence, not less.

I can well visualise the whole of the meadows behind the beach and dunes at Diamond will become sea at some time in the very near future, the few houses built there will be consumed by the sea.

It really is time for property owners to serve notice on the government to stop such actions, putting them on notice that they will be held fully responsible for any resulting damage in the future or present due to any inundation by sea water.

I would also advise them as a group to take advice from a leading QC such as Sir Henry Ford [Barbados] on what action they may take and what payments they may expect for the current blighting of their land and property by this criminal and indiscriminate removal and selling of sand at Diamond.

It may also be possible if the government fail to act, to serve a certain type of writ on ministers and managers to decease and desist.

There is a good case for a legal beach sit in, because all beach’s are reserved for public use, take your BBQ’s and have prolonged beach parties.

This would be a good opportunity for students to save their country from the current rape and pillage by this Marxist government, who care nothing for the people or their property.

This should be regarded as an all party action call. Action is of dire urgency in this matter.

The Prime Minister of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, D. Ralph E. Gonsalves, has said on several occasions ” I am here to complete the work of Maurice Bishop”

Maurice Bishop is the dead revolutionary that took over Grenada the Caribbean island In 1979.

The people of Saint Vincent have called upon Gonsalves to explain what part of Bishops work he wants to emulate and complete? 

Just to get an idea of Bishops work and ideology, here is one of Bishops speech’s

September 13th 1982: Speech

Line of March for the Party Presented by Comrade Maurice Bishop, Chairman, Central Committee to General Meeting of Party on Monday.

 “Comrades of the Political Bureau and Central Committee of the Party, Comrades of the Party.

I will like to join with Comrade Strachan to say on behalf of the Central Committee that we are very happy to have all the comrades here this afternoon. As Comrade Selwyn has pointed out, essentially what we want to do today is to deal with the proposed line of march as examined by the C.C. of the Party in the last few weeks.

In our view the line of march needs to take into account four specific features:-

Firstly, the present character and stage of the Revolution. We regard that as fundamentally important. We must decide what exactly is a correct characterisation of the present stage of the Revolution.

Secondly, the line of march must address in a serious way the question of the main tasks facing the Party and Revolution at this time.

Thirdly, we must determine a correct prioritisation of those tasks; we must establish priorities bearing in mind particularly, the comments, criticisms, suggestions, proposals etc. which have been made by Party members and, of course, taking into account the totality of the objective and subjective situation.

The fourth and final factor is the need to emphasise the further development of the subjective factor, the need to place great emphasis and importance on the further development of the subjective factor, that is to say, the Party, In other words, we must look at the Party itself, review the history of the Party very briefly and deal with the question of criteria for membership into the Party and for remaining as members of the Party.

Comrades, in terms of the character of the Revolution, the first aspect to the line of march we believe it is important for us to look at this question at this time for several reasons.

Firstly and obviously . . .

Firstly and obviously, because we must as a Party know where we are. As Party members, candidate members and applicants we have to face the broad masses out there; we have to answer questions about where we are, what we are trying to do and so on and therefore we must be able to answer those questions in precise terms. We believe further that there is some confusion on this question, that it has not been sufficiently dealt with in the past and therefore we want today to look at it that much more carefully. It is extremely important for us to get a better understanding of where we are, of what we are trying to build and of how we will be able to build it. That is why we feel that this whole question of what exactly is the present stage is so important.

Before looking at that, a few words on the question of where we have come from, in other words, the inheritance of the Revolution. All comrades know of course that we inherited a backward, undeveloped economy, with a very low level – one can say in fact, a primitive level, of technological and economic development in the country. There was a very low level, and there is still a low level of development of the productive forces, that is, of living human labour, objects of labour and instruments of labour. This low level of development of the productive forces in turn resulted in very underdeveloped class formations.

What we have in Grenada primarily of course, is a very large petit bourgeoisie, particularly a large peasantry – the rural petit bourgeoisie – small farmers who own small means of production and who must therefore work as they cannot live off their own plot of land alone. Some of them employ labour; some do not. So a large peasantry or bulk of our rural petit bourgeoisie. Then there is the urban petit bourgeoisie in terms of shopkeepers, garage owners, craftsmen, small restaurant owners and such like. The whole range of the petit bourgeoisie in our country. That of course is by far the largest class formation in the country.

We also have a working class which is very small and made up of agricultural workers based mainly in the rural areas, transport and communication workers on the docks, in telephone, electricity, etc., manufacturing and industrial workers (the smallest section of all) who produce garments, cokes, beer, that sort of thing. Some sections of the working class are employed by Government – garbagemen, the lowest clerical workers, the daily paid workers and so on. And of course we also have the commercial workers. Some of these comrades of the working class are also small owners of the means of production, but do not rely on that to support themselves – at least not as their main means of support.

In terms of the inheritance . . .

In terms of the inheritance I also want to emphasise the low cultural level of our population at large as part of that inheritance and in particular the lack of technical skills and technical expertise of the working people. We must emphasise also the l9th century type of capitalist that we have in the country, capitalists engaged primarily in comprador activity, in other words largely in the importation and thereafter distribution of goods. This is a particularly parasitic type of capitalist in the full time service of international capitalism on which they must depend for the manufactured goods which give them their profits. They produce nothing and the vast majority of them engage in no form of manufacturing or industrial activity at all.

As part of the inheritance too, we must also note the very low level of infrastructural development of our country. Further, very backward agricultural development is also part of our inheritance and has relevance to the present stage of the Revolution. This inheritance of ours does have negative implications for the road that we are travelling on, for our objective to build Socialism in our country.

First of all, having a small working class is a very very serious disadvantage because only the working class can build Socialism. We know this is so because the working class is the class that is always growing; in fact, it has been historically, and it still is part of capitalist development that the working class gets larger and larger. Again, it is the working class that is most prepared for organisation and discipline because of having to work every day, having to arrive on time, having to engage in collective organisation and collective bargaining in their trade unions and so on. The working class too owns no means of production, in fact owns nothing except their labour and therefore they are the ones who most of all have to fight to end the oppression that comes about as a result of the private ownership of the means of production which of course enslaves them and ensures that their own development is stultified and, finally the working class does have the key role in building socialism because of their role in production.

This inheritance is a problem . . .

This inheritance is a problem also because of the large petit bourgeoisie that it has left us. We of course have that number of petit bourgeoisie in our country precisely because of economic under-development, precisely because capitalist production was so undeveloped that they did not need much labour and therefore people were by large forced to try to make a living however they could and wherever they could. But because the petit bourgeoisie is a vacillating class it is more difficult to build Socialism when there is such a large amount of petit bourgeoisie in the country, precisely because they are in the middle and you have to fight hard to win them. Many of them of course have bourgeois aspirations, many more are deluded and [unclear] by bourgeois ideology and propaganda and therefore the struggle to win the petit bourgeoisie has historically been a very serious intense struggle in all countries that have embarked upon a path of Socialist transformation.

The question we must now pose comrades is whether a society such as ours with their primitiveness, with so little infrastructure, with so little development of productive forces, with such a small working class can really build socialism. This is a question that many other countries before us have posed and many other countries in the future will continue to pose. Of course, this question arises because socialism requires a good level of development of the product productive forces, it requires infrastructural development, it requires agricultural development it requires industrialisation, it requires a high level of cultural development of the people, it requires an even higher level of political development and political consciousness, it requires central planning of the economy and society as a whole, it requires a serious Marxist Leninist vanguard Party leading, guiding and directing the whole process. All of these things are prerequisites for the building of Socialism, and, of course, the vast majority of these either do not exist at all or are at a very low level of development, at this time. Nonetheless, the answer is yes, it is possible for a country like ours to build Socialism. That of course we all know. It is possible, but the question is how and we think that this can be seen if we examine some of the possibilities or models for economic development in our country.

We believe that . . .

We believe that there are four main possibilities for economic development of Grenada and countries like Grenada. The first of these is a total private sector free enterprise system of economic development, your Seaga of Jamaica or your Puerto Rico model of development, where free enterprise is given full rein, where the private sector is able to rule uncontrolled. The second model is a total state sector approach where just about anything important is owned by the State, where the State owns virtually everything that matters. The third type is a mixed economy, but with a private sector dominant, and of course, that is the model that we have chosen in Grenada, the mixed economy state sector dominant type model. But even after having said that, there are still questions of why we have chosen that form and the question of, precisely how will that form assist us to build socialism are two such questions that come to mind. Obviously, if we are speaking of building Socialism and we are, then it is clear that our objective as Marxist-Leninist must in the first instance be to construct socialism As rapidly, but scientifically as possible. That being so, clearly we cannot choose the path of capitalism. We cannot choose the path of a total private sector free enterprise model because that will be inconsistant (sic) with what we believe in and what we have been and are struggling for. We could not likewise choose that path of the mixed economy, with the private sector dominant because that will have tremendous dangers for the successful construction of Socialism and will have us without the effective possibility of guiding and regulating economic development through the imposition of taxes, the granting of credits and concessions and the use of all arms of the State apparatus. This must necessarily be so because it is, as we know, the objective material basis of the economy that determines and directs the political, social and cultural development of the society as a whole.

Equally, we cannot opt for the total state sector model as the state does not have the necessary material of financial resources, management and skills resources, access to markets, international contacts and so on. All of this should he obvious, but for those who have any doubts, please reflect on the tremendous difficulties that we have in finding the dollars necessary to pay the downpayment to the British Company – Plessey’s – that will be installing the radar, communications and navigational equipment for our new international airport, or reflect on how difficult it has been to find guaranteed markets for our primary products and our agro-industrial products, or how difficult it is to find engineers or architects or science teachers or managers – and note I did not even say good managers, I just said managers. No, it would be impossible at this time for the state on its own to build Grenada.

That, of course, means that an alliance is necessary, an alliance in the first place between the working class and the petty bourgeoisie, in particular the rural peasantry, and in the second place an alliance with those elements of the upper petty bourgeoisie and the national bourgeoisie who for different reasons, are willing to be involved in building the economy and the country at this time.

 

DEFINITION OF PRESENT STAGE OF GRENADA REVOLUTION

 

And this leads me at long last to the answer to the question – what is a correct characterisation of the present stage of development of the Grenada Revolution? And the answer, of course, as we all know, is that the Grenada Revolution is a national-democratic, anti-imperialist Revolution, involving the alliance of many classes including sections of the small bourgeoisie but under the leadership and with the dominant role being played by the working people and particularly the working class, through their vanguard Party the NJM.

That Comrades is how we define the present stage of the Grenada Revolution today. Obviously National Democratic, anti-imperialist means what it says. I did not say a socialist revolution as some comrades like to keep pretending that we have. Obviously we do not have a socialist revolution and it is not socialist precisely because:

The low level of development of the productive forces. You cannot have a socialist revolution with this low level development.

Our working class is too small and too politically underdeveloped.

For these primary reasons we cannot proceed straight away to the building of socialism but must first pass through a stage where we lay the basis, where we create the conditions, including the socio-economic and political conditions, for the building of socialism and the creation of the socialist revolution, that is, for the full coming to power of the working class. In other words, comrades, what we are into now (this national democratic stage) really means two things. What we are speaking about now is not socialist construction, not the socialist revolution, we are speaking about the national democratic revolution, we are speaking about socialist orientation. So the important things to contradistinguish here are socialist construction the second stage versus socialist orientation the first stage, which is the stage we are in at this time.

Comrades, these two things . . .

Comrades, these two things are completely different and it is very important for us to grasp that difference, because the experience of the C.C. and study guides in the Party is that it is an area of tremendous confusion and an area that has proven hard to grasp. In some countries around the world it is of course possible to go straight to socialism. That would have been possible; for example the French in 1785 at the time of their bourgeois-democratic Revolution. They could have gone straight to socialism because the necessary objective material bases and conditions were present. Or if tomorrow morning a revolution takes place in the United States or one of the industrialised countries of Western Europe they too can no straight to socialism, because they have a large working class, because the objective material basis in terms of infrastructure, high economic development, high level of development of the productive forces etc, etc are present, so once there is a correct scientific political leadership it is possible for them to proceed to socialism straight away, but for us it is impossible. It really is important for this first concept to be fully grasped.

On Saturday when we were doing the same presentation for the Applicants, there was a particular example I gave which I want to repeat for the Members and Candidate Members and ask for the apologies of the promoted Applicants.

What we gave for an example then was two different people in Grenada who owned two separate plots of lands; let us say one person owning land in Grand Anse and another in Grenville, St. Andrew’s. Both of them own plots of land, both of them want to build a house on their respective plots of lands. In the case of the man in Grand Anse, his land is flat, his land already has the necessary attachments for telephone, water, electricity, he has a concrete base, there is already some kind of access road to his plot of land – therefore all he has to do is put up his house.

In the case of the man in Grenville, what he has is a rough piece of land, the land is hilly, the land has a lot of bush, a lot of trees, a lot of stone. There are no water pipes near to this man’s plot of land; there are no telephone poles near to this man’s plot of land, no electricity poles, no access road – he has to go through a dirt track. This second man cannot just go and put up his house. First of all he has to cut a piece of road to the house to get the materials there; then he has to level the land and he has to do all the necessary earth work; and civil works; he has to put down his concrete base and only then can he begin to talk about building his house.

The first man, . . .

The first man, the man in St. George’s, he is ready for socialist construction.

The second man, the one in Grenville with the rough hilly land who has to do all the necessary preliminary work is the kind of man like us here in Grenada who can’t go straight to socialism. He has to first lay the basis and the foundations. We have to cut the lane, cut the road, make sure the telephone poles are laid, the pipe borne water is available and so on before we can build the house.

That is the difference, comrades, between socialist orientation and socialist construction and that is the stage we are at, the first, stage – the stage of socialist orientation.

Comrades, we speak of the national democratic anti-imperialist revolution and each of those words, of course., has a meaning. The national democratic anti-imperialist revolution is national because it arose from a national liberation struggle that was aimed to do away with the political, economic and ideological domination of an oppressive ruling elite that of Gairy, imperialism and their allies. It is national because it involved, and still involves, a vast majority of the people – that is why the national democratic Revolution is national.

It is democratic because it aims to give or restore rights and freedoms to the majority of the people. Under the Gairy dictatorship of course, many of the rights of the working people were taken away. The February 1978 Essential Services Act took away the right to strike from eleven of the most important categories of workers. :he Public Order Act, 1974, prohibited political parties and even individuals from using loudspeakers, without police permission. The 1975 Newspaper Act made it impossible to publish a newspaper that was political and opposed to Gairy. These rights, as comrades know, have been restored. We have all created new rights because part of this national democratic path is the need to readily expand democracy and the democratic participation of the poor and working people in the country. That is why we have brought more democratic rights through the establishment of zonal councils, workers parish councils, farmers, women and youth councils – all of the organs of popular democracy.

The Revolution is also . . .

The Revolution is also anti-imperialist because it is opposed to foreign domination and the exploitation of our country and its resources by the transnational co-operations (sic). Of course, this looks only at the economic essence of imperialism for that is what I am trying to focus on at this time. The political, cultural and ideological aspects of imperialism are not what we are dealing with here, though they will also be struggles in this anti-imperialist stage.

We want to point out too, comrades, that the national democratic anti-imperialist stage can be led not just by the working class, not just by the petty bourgeoisie, but even by the bourgeoisie. It can be led by the bourgeoisie, petty bourgeoisie or the working class – any of these class forces can lead the Revolution. If it is led by the bourgeoisie, obviously, it could never go on to build socialism – that will be an impossibility; no bourgeois can build socialism. If it is led by the petty bourgeoisie, the only basis on which it can build socialism is if the petty bourgeoisie leadership in the course of the class struggle is transformed into a revolutionary Marxist-Leninist leadership and therefore develops a Marxist-Leninist Party that then guides and directs the process. Without that transformation, it would also be impossible.

Therefore, obviously it is only the working class that can build socialism. It is only under the leadership of the working class, led by a Marxist-Leninist vanguard Party that the process can be completed and we can go on to socialist construction. That is the only time it is possible.

That again, comrades, needs to be understood by us because of its tremendous relevance to the nature of the alliance we have and what we need to do from here on.

This national democratic stage of the revolution has, broadly speaking, two main components – a political aspect and an economic aspect.

 

POLITICAL ESSENCE OF THE NATIONAL – DEMOCRATIC PARTY

 

In terms of the political aspect, the essence of that political aspect is the dictatorship of the working people, dictatorship of rule of the working people – that is the essence. This essence implies a change in the balance of forces that presently exists, a change in the balance of forces that will usually be involved in the anti-imperialist struggle of the national liberation movements. In other words, in your Angolas, Mozambiques, etc., what you would normally find happening is that there is a class alliance involved in the fight to end colonialism. And that class alliance will involve the bourgeoisie, the petty-bourgeoisie and the proletariat (the working class) – all three.

And in countries like ours, after independence, just like in Grenada today, what you usually find happening is that state power is wielded by an alliance of the bourgeoisie, the petty-bourgeoisie and the working class through a particular Party or combination of Parties, and usually comrades, as you know, the situation is that it is the bourgeoisie and the petty-bourgeoisie that is pre-dominant, the combined bourgeoisie and petty bourgeoisie that is pre-dominant, and the working class is the minority influence. That is the usual situation in countries like ours even after independence. That is what is happening right now. Right through the English-speaking Caribbean – in all of them – you can see that the bourgeoisie and petty- bourgeoisie are ruling and that working class representation is very small.

But when countries start to move to develop this essence I was talking about – the dictatorship (or rule) of the working people -is that in the course of class struggle, the bourgeoisie begins to become subordinated and the influence of the petty-bourgeoisie and working class together becomes pre-dominant. In other words a drift begins to take place, at first imperceptible, but gradually observable and at a certain moment when quantity becomes quality, that shift becomes very clear and very noticeable. And at that time, the bourgeoisie becomes the minority force and the petty bourgeoisie and proletariat begin to rule. And when that happens, it becomes the first time at which it is possible to shift the country away from the path of capitalist development, because a combination of bourgeoisie and petty bourgeoisie pre-dominant necessarily means that the emphasis will be on capitalist development. And equally, once the shift takes place then the potential is there for the first time to begin to move along the path of socialist orientation and away from the path of capitalist development. That comrades, is our situation in Grenada, and that was the situation when we took power on March 13th, 1979.

When we took power . . .

When we took power on March 13th 1979, as comrades know, we did not take power as an alliance – we took power as NJM. But within the first few hours of taking power, we tried to build an alliance and we begun (sic) to build that alliance for two main reasons:– Firstly to hold on to power in the first few seconds., minutes, hours, days and weeks. And the second reason was to defeat imperialism, in the months and years thereafter, because defeating imperialism is a complex process, that requires a political orientation and an economic transformation that involves crushing the rule of the monopolies and of big business in your country, that involves taking control of the commanding heights of the economy and so on. And we cannot do that on our own and that is why the alliance was and is needed.

But comrades, we have to be very clear that it was the Party and the Party alone that took power. GNP didn’t help us; there was no UPP, there was no alliance with any upper petty-bourgeoisie or any national bourgeoisie in seizing power. In fact, most of these elements might have run from the prospect of having to go down to True Blue barracks to take power. NJM took power on its own, but NJM then decided – correctly – that an alliance was needed to hold power. We understood the reasons for that because we knew we could not do it on our own. The leadership of the Party and the Party itself had a working class ideology and therefore an understanding of what was required to ensure that the working class will eventually take power. But we were way ahead and we still are way, way ahead ideologically of the masses of our people in general and also of our national bourgeoisie. We are much more politically and ideologically developed than them, we have a much deeper class consciousness then (sic) them.

So we have the objective to build socialism. We know that objective could only be achieved if we built an alliance but not all of our masses know that and in fact the vast majority still have no scientific understanding of this need for an alliance. So what we did, we did in their interest and acting in their name, even though they did not necessarily understand why we were doing what we were doing. And it is very significant Comrades that from the start, from the very first second of the Grenada Revolution (let us say 4.30 a.m. on March 13th 1979) from the very first second of the Grenada Revolution, what was established was a dictatorship of the entire working people. In its operationalisation; in its initial concretisation; it took the form of the anti-Gairy poor and working people, in other words, those people who were opposed to Gairy were the ones who appeared to be in the vanguard. And that is true, they were in the vanguard. But right from the start, the effective dictatorship was not only of the anti-Gairy working people. It was a dictatorship of the entire working people with the anti-Gairy working people initially being in the operational vanguard of that dictatorship. It is a very important concept for us to grasp and to agree on.

As the Revolution deepened . . .

As the Revolution deepened and strengthened and consolidated, as the Gairyite working people came to see that the Revolution was also in their interest, that we were not victimising them, that, in fact, we were bringing benefits to them, then they too joined the Revolution, and today, a majority of them support the Revolution. But right from the start the rule that was established by the NJM on behalf of the working class, was rule of the entire working people. It’s a very important conceptual point.

From the start too, comrades, we had an alliance with sections of the upper petty bourgeoisie and national bourgeoisie right from the word GO. Within the first few hours of the Revolution, we began to put that alliance in place. I can remember all of us making phone calls to different sections of the Petty-bourgeoisie and the National bourgeoisie, inviting them to come down to Radio Free Grenada and in some cases beginning to feel them out as to whether or not they were willing to serve on the ruling council of the People’s Revolutionary Government.

I can remember very well that the first set of names we announced for the ruling council was fourteen (14), not twenty-three (23). And these fourteen names were made up mainly (outside of the immediate leadership), of the petty-bourgeoisie, the upper petty-bourgeoisie and the national bourgeoisie. You remember that? Simon Charles and Sydney Ambrose – peasantry,. Bernard Gittens – professional middle strata, Lloyd Noel – professional middle strata; Palm Buxo and Norris Bain – middle capitalists; Lyden Ramdhanny – big capitalist; that is who the People’s Revolutionary Government was. And this was done deliberately so that imperialism won’t got too excited and would say

well they have some nice fellas in that thing; everything alright. And as a result wouldn’t think about sending in troops.

That was the mistake, for example, the comrades in Gambia made a few months ago. Remember the Gambia Coup E’tat a few months ago? What was the first thing those comrades did? They say

we are Marxist-Leninists and we have just had a Marxist-Leninist Revolution and we go wipe out the bourgeoisie. The same day they overthrow them – same day, they didn’t even give then three days. So fortunately, NJM had a little more sense than that. And like I said comrades, the first fourteen names were bourgeoisie, big capitalist, petty-bourgeoisie, middle capitalist, peasantry and professional middle strata – that is who made up the People’s Revolutionary Government. It is only after about a week and a half (if I recall correctly), when we held the Party General meeting in Radio Free Grenada’s studio (and some comrades here would have been present at that meeting) that we finally got around to pulling some more Party comrades. You all remember that meeting down in Radio Free Grenada studio. It was then we chose nine more comrades to make up the twenty- three. But the first set of names were Lyden, Pam Buxo, Norris Bain, Lloyd Noel and so on. That is what I mean by saying that the alliance began from the first few hours and the first few days. And that alliance was and is extremely important.

From our point of view . . .

From our point of view comrades, why do we need the alliance?

We need the alliance firstly, as we pointed out already, hold power in the first few days and weeks.

We need the alliance, secondly, to consolidate and build the revolution and to ensure the defeat of imperialism. [At] this time we can’t do this effectively without the alliance.

We need the alliance, comrades, because we don’t have enough managers, because we don’t have enough capital, because we don’t have enough international contacts, because we don’t have enough markets. For all of these reasons, we need the alliance.

If we were the State that owned the flour mill in Tempe and not Geddes Grant, we won’t be able to sell that flour so easily to Jamaica and the others in Caricom. If it were the State that owned the Gament (sic) Factory in True Blue and not Hadeed, we won’t he able to sell garments to Barbados and Trinidad so easily. The capitalist prefers to deal with the capitalist and capitalist Governments allows other capitalists to come in, even when their Government is a socialist oriented Government like our Government in Grenada. It is very important for us to see that.

And why does the bourgeoisie need the alliance?

And why does the bourgeoisie need the alliance?

They need the alliance . . .

They need the alliance first of all because they have contradictions with imperialism. Imperialism especially at this time because of the deep capitalist crisis, has been putting the squeeze on the national bourgeoisie. They can’t always get letters of credit, every month the banks make the terms for the letters of credit more difficult instead of three month repayment, it becomes one month. Sometimes they get not even one day. Also they can’t get the kinds of loans they want. And when they do get loans, they have to pay high interest rates. And overall, of course, the fact of the recession – the capitalist crisis makes it more difficult for them to develop in the way in which they would like. This is so because the capitalist crisis affects Grenada and helps to squeeze our economy because their demand for our goods – cocoa, banana, nutmegs has fallen. And when we can’t sell cocoa, banana, nutmegs, then it means the standard of living falls because there is less money floating around. So a lot of the capitalists are vexed with imperialism. That is the first point.

The second point is that they have been watching the Revolution and they are now convinced that the Revolution gives them new possibilities for making profits, new possibilities for expanding their businesses and moving on. They have watched the growth of infrastructure – the new International Airport, the coming Sandino Plant, the Emulsion Plant, the Quarry and Asphalt Plant, the new East Coast Road, the Feeder Roads, the West Coast road to come, the new Telephone system to come, the new Electricity system to come, the new Storage Tank Farm to come, the 40% more water in people’s homes. They have watched all of that and understand that it represents the necessary basis for them to develop their business and to make profits. In other words they see the Revolution as providing them with the possibility of developing and expanding.

And don’t forget that we have been encouraging them through holding many consultations with them. When we have a National Conference on the Economy with the mass organisations (as we did on 29th January), two weeks later, we held a National al Conference with the Private Sector, and we are sitting down with them just like we did with the masses.

Now we are settling with their participation a Tourism Code and an Investment Code. And Cde Coard, as the Minister of Finance, has been meeting with them very regularly and giving them incentives, giving them concessions, helping them to develop the confidence that the state is not going to crush them. And all of this has now had a qualitiative (sic) effect on the National Bourgeoisie.

A third factor . . .

A third factor, comrades, and it is a factor we sometimes forget, is that the National Bourgeoisie has [Unclear] is the unpatriotic capitalist and there is the patriotic one, and it is the patriotic ones who will form the alliance with us. The unpatriotic ones will sell out and go abroad or will try to engage in sabotage. So the reality of patriotism is something that must not be overlooked.

And fourthly and finally, it is important to remember that part of the reason we can form the alliance with them is because of their own low level of class consciousness. Therefore, they don’t really fully under stand what it is we are doing. It comes over in a million things they say from time to time. They are not really [unclear] they are still hoping that what we are building is not socialism but as one of them puts it socialist capitalism or capitalist socialism – whatever that means.

So, the is that area of confusion. But comrades a few more words on the nature of the alliance that. we have with these sections. First of all, it is important to understand that the alliance we have gives full, total complete control to the Party and the working people. The party and the working people have hegemony. A monopoly will mean total power, hegemony will mean total control, and that is the distinction we are drawing between hegemony and monopoly.

But there is absolutely no doubt that we have a hegemonic control on power and over all the capital areas of the State. We can see this in several different ways. If you consider the question of Cabinet. The Cabinet of our country has ten (10) ministers and nine of these ten ministers are members of the Party; the only non-member of the Party is Norris Rain. If you look at the ruling council of the People’s Revolutionary Government, you will see it no longer has twenty-three people because Lloyd Noel is in detention, Pam Buxo is out of the country, Lyle Bullen is no longer involved. There are three people who are out, there are now twenty (20) people who are in the P.R.G. And if you look at the Party and the Cabinet and you analyse them carefully, you will discover an over 90% direct control by the Party of the ruling council of the P.R.G. and Cabinet.

Secondly, to see . . .

Secondly, to see further this hegemony or control I am talking about comrades, look at the composition of our army and militia. We don’t have any upper Petty-bourgeoisie or bourgeoisie in our army or militia. When you look at the officers in the army it is Working Class comrades or petty-bourgeois revolutionary democrats or communists who are the officers in the army – that’s the situation in our army.

Thirdly comrades, consider our Zonal Councils and our Workers Councils and so on. The bourgeoisie is not invited deliberately and consciously, so they don’t have the opportunity to come and try to confuse people inside the councils. When we’re having a Zonal Council in this building or a Workers Parish Council, we send out the invitations, we decide who we want to invite and we live (sic) the bourgeoisie out deliberately and consciously.

Consider the trade unions in our country, five of the eight leading trade unions are under the direct leadership and control of full members, candidate members and applicants of our Party. There is no doubt about it; what we have is hegemony; we have full control.

I want to think of another area. Just consider, comrades, how laws are made in this country. Laws are made in this country when Cabinet agrees and when I sign a document on behalf of Cabinet. And then that is what everybody in the country – like it or don’t like it – has to follow. Or consider how people get detained in this country. We don’t go and call for no votes. You get detained when I sign an order after discussing it with the National Security Committee of the Party or with a higher Party body. Once I sign it -like it or don’t like it – its (sic) up the hill for them.

It is also important . . .

It is also important to note comrades, that while we are in an alliance with sections of the bourgeoisie and upper petty-bourgeoisie, they are not part of our dictatorship. They are not part of our rule and control – they are not part of it. We bring them in for what we want to bring them in for. They are not part of our dictatorship because when they try to hold public meetings and we don’t want that, the masses shut down the meeting. When we want to hold Zonal Councils and we don’t want them there, we keep them out. When they want to put out newspaper and we don’t want that, we close it down. When they want freedom of expression to attack the Government or to link up with the CIA and we don’t want that, we crush them and jail them. They are not part of the dictatorship. In fact, if the truth is told, they have been repressed by the dictatorship. They have lost some of the rights they used to have. Now it is the working people who have these rights, not the bourgeoisie. When the working people want to hold a public meeting, we don’t stop then. When the working people went to go and hold a picket, we don’t stop them. When they want to Picket Bata, that is good, but if Bata want to picket workers we jail Bata. The workers could Picket Bata, but Bata cannot picket no workers. When Torchlight workers want to take over the company, we support them, not publicly and through making noise because that would not be in our interest. We pretend we don’t know what’s happening and let the trade unionists do it. But if the Torchlight owners try to crush the workers, we jail the Torchlight owners.

The point is all rights are not for them, all freedoms are not for them, but all rights and freedoms are now for the majority who are no longer oppressed and repressed by a tiny minority. That is very important to understand because that is what dictatorship or rule means. And that is how every state operates. That is why the state came about in the first case; so that there would be a dictatorship and a minority, in the case of the capitalist state, would crush and oppress the majority. In the case of the Socialist State, the majority will crush, oppress and repress the recalcitrant minority. That is what it is, and that is what the nature of the dictatorship is, so they are not part of that. And that is very important for us to understand.

Comrades, as we see it, this political essence – this dictatorship of the working people – is what we have to continue to develop and to build rapidly if we are to make substantial progress in building the national democratic anti-imperialist phase of the Revolution. And I would say, there are six (6) things to watch and to emphasise in terms of the political essence.

First, it means control by the Party and the working people. So we have to be guided by that at all times. The Party and the working people; the Party acting in the name of the working people and particularly, of course, the working class must control, guide and direct the process – must rule.

Secondly, it means . . .

Secondly, it means an alliance has to continue to be maintained, firstly, with the peasantry and other elements of the petty-bourgeoisie, and secondly with sections of the upper petty-bourgeoisie and the national bourgeoisie. That also means comrades, when we do work plans when we have particular actions we want to take or are about to take, we always have to be conscious of this alliance. In other words, comrades in St. Andrew’s area for example, who historically have given extra ordinary (sic) trouble in their dealings with Norris Bain, Minister of Housing and member of the ruling PRG Council must be very careful. Over and over again, there would be activities, where there is no no (sic) reason why the comrade can not be present, and they won’t invite him. So we have him coming to us and complaining about all kinds of unnecessary problems because of stupidity. On the way in which some comrades choose to relate to, let’s say a Lyden Ramdhanny or a Bernard Gittens. The fact is that we have an alliance and the alliance is important. And the same applies to the patriotic businessmen with whom we are developing joint ventures and whom we are encouraging to invest. We can’t meet them and curse them or get on arrogantly with them for no good reason. Obviously, a trade-union struggle is one kind of thing. But what I am saying is that for as long as the alliance is there, it calls for a certain kind of political maturity at the level of our behaviour in dealing with these with whom we are building an alliance. That is very important for us to watch.

The third thing, comrades, the question of our people; their education (political and academic); the development of further democratic mechanisms and organisations and means and methods of getting them to he involved and to participate and so on; The need for greater training in democracy for them. In other words, the preparation for them to rule. That, of course, primarily refers to the working class but it applies in general to the working people and also to the broad masses in terms of the development of democracy, in terms of the involvement in mass organisations, in terms of participation in the organs of popular power.

The fourth point, the necessary emphasis we have to give at all times to the working class (we are going to come back to that so I don’t want to say too much on it). But for this political section, it has to be emphasised.

And the fifth point, the building of the Party, because again it is the Party that has to be at the head of this process, acting as representatives of the working people and in particular the working class. That is the only way it can be because the working class does not have the ideological development or experience to build socialism on its own. The Party has to be there to ensure that the necessary steps and measures are taken. And it is our primary responsibility to prepare and train the working class for what their historic mission will be later on down the road. That is why the Party has to be built and built rapidly, through bringing in the first sons and daughters of the working class.

And finally comrades, the need always for firmness and inflexibility on political questions that affect the building of socialism. On the economic front, you can have a lot of flexibility; on the political front the flexibility must be very little. We have to be firm because we are walking a real tight rope. On the one hand, you have to give encouragements and incentives and build the confidence of the bourgeoisie. But on the other hand, when they step out of line, we still have to crush them. So it’s that kind of tight-rope that has to be walked.

 

ECONOMIC ESSENCE OF THE NATIONAL DEMOCRATIC PATH

 

I want to come comrades, to the economic essence in the non-capitalist path, or more precisely the path of socialist orientation. That is what the economic essence of this national democratic business I s- the non-capitalist path of economic development, the path of socialist orientation. That involves in particular building the state sector along particular lines which I now want to describe quickly.

Firstly, the state sector must be built to be the dominant sector. As comrades know, that’s happening already. Last year over 90% of all investments in this country were by the public sector, by the state and at this time the state controls about a quarter of the total economy. Building the state sector to be the dominant sector means a number of things:

We must assume total control of all financial institutions over a period of time. I did not say total control tomorrow morning or next year, but equally over a period – that must happen.

We must assume total control of all foreign trade and also of some aspects of internal trade. The MNIB, of course, is helping us in that area already. This year, the MNIB will have a turnover of $20m. Right now MNIB has $35m in stocks (quite a staggering figure). right now , MNIB is buying over 78 agricultural items from the farmers in Grenada. Right now, one in every ten farmers is selling his produce to MNIB. Right now, the three main depots for the MNIB (Young Street, Hillsborough Carriacou, and Petit Martinique), in January, February, March of this year together, sold something like 300,000 lbs of produce. And I’11 give you something that’s even more staggering than that which was told to me by the Manager of the MNIB depot in Petit Martinique – Linus Belmar. Belmar told us that the Petit Martinique depot has a monthly turnover of $60,000 – a quite staggering figure. The role of the MNIB, both in the area of imports and exports, will have to be stepped up in the coming period.

We must assume total control of all Public Utilities – electricity, telephone, water, National Transport Service. And here again, as comrades know, we already in fact control those four. The missing one for us now is Cable and Wireless and the Satelite (sic) Dish from the Soviet Union will be one aspect of the timing in relation to Cable and Wireless.

We must continue the building of the infrasturcture (sic) air port, sea ports, roads etc. – all aspects of infrasturcture (sic).

We must ensure the further development of tourism, of the manufacturing and industrial sectors; of the agricultural sector; of the agro-industrial sector; of fisheries. In other words, all of the main pillars of the economy – agriculture, agro- industries, fisheries, tourism, manufacturing and light industry.

We must develop central planning mechanisms for the economy and the society as a whole, but first of all we must start with the economy. In terms of the development of the economy comrades, over the next 10 – 15 years; as we see it, the next 5 years – emphasis will undoubtedly be tourism. That is not to say that we like tourism, That is because we have no choice. Tourism is the sector that has the greatest potential for giving us the profits to invest in the areas we really want to invest in – agriculture, agro industries, fisheries, and non-agro industrialisation generally. That’s really where we will like to go, but those cannot produce the money at this time, while tourism can. We estimate that we will spend about $350m in just tourism alone over the next couple of years, including the cost of the New International Air-port (sic).

The question is . . .

The question is how to control that tourist development? And the plan there as you know is the Tourism Code, the Investment Code in general, and of course, a very, very careful policy and the development of careful guidelines at every stage to ensure that the negative social effects of tourism are at all times curbed. For example, take prostitution, if you catch local prostitutes – lock them up and rehabilitate them. If you catch foreign prostitutes coming in – deport then. So we will have to develop a very careful set of rules and guidelines to ensure that tourism doesn’t get our of hand. But at the same time, unfortunately for us is the way I will put it, tourism has to be the key for the immediate short term period.

For one thing, there is no way we can ever pay back for that International Air-port (sic) in a short or medium term if we don’t have tourism developed. So that’s where it’s at for the next five years or so. The next five years after that – agriculture with a lot more emphasis then too on Agro-Industries and Fisheries. But of course, in this first five-year period we also have to continue to do a lot of work on agriculture, agro industries and fisheries, so don’t misunderstand what I am saying. I am talking about emphasis and where the dollar bills will have to go because we don’t have many dollars. But the fact of the matter is that all of these phases I am describing we will have to continue to work on all fronts. But we are not going to be able to make the kind of returns we need on Agro, Agriculture or Fisheries in the upcoming period. Hence the importance of tourism.

And in terms of agriculture comrades, the Youth Employment Programme assumes predominant emphasis right now in this first period.

In the third five year period (that is in ten years time), light industry, especially non-agro based industry and manufacturing will become more and more predominant, more and more important.

It is important to observe comrades that all of this lays the basis for the development of capitalism. And that of course is a major problem because it means that if we are not careful capitalism rather than socialism will be the the (sic) end product, just like when Lenin had formulated NEP right after the Great October Socialist Revolution, the Bolsheviks too had that same problem and concern.

Simultaneously we will . . .

Simultaneously we will be nurturing the shoots of capitalism and the shoots of socialism and the question is which one becomes predominant and how you control and ensure that socialism is what comes out and not capitalism. We have the same problem as the young Soviet State faced but a million times more difficult, because our state sector is much smaller and does not have the potential in this immediate period for providing the profits to build the economy and the country. And of course, we have a much smaller and less ideologically developed working class. On top of that we have this massive petty bourgeoisie; you have this low level of development of class consciousness; you have this total backwardness and primitiveness in the economy. In other words comrades, we have a tight rope that we have to monitor very carefully as we walk it – every single day, understanding clearly that all of this infrastructural development, and all of this activity we are describing not only can build socialism but also capitalism.

What this means is that our primary task must be to sink the ideas of Marxism/Leninism amongst the working people so that their own ideological level can advance and they can begin to bettor understand what we are trying to do and why their class consciousness can be raised in this way. Secondly, of course we can control the development capitalism through the use of laws and regulations; because one thing we do have is political control (and we have that firmly) so we can decide on how much taxes to charge. we can decide who get credits, we can decide who gets concessions and pioneer incentives, we can decide what [blank space] of Laws to pass and when, we can decide who to

manners and when. In other words, we can use the apparatus of the State in order to effect those controls. But it is a tight rope and we just need to be careful and understand what we are involved in.

TASKS OF THE NATIONAL DEMOCRATIC STAGE

 

Comrades, the tasks of this national democratic stage can perhaps be summarised in ten points; and I want to just quickly list them.

Ensure the leading role of the working class through its Marxist/Leninist Party backed by some form of the dictatorship of the proletariat. But please note that I said some form of the dictatorship of the proletariat, because obviously at this stage we cannot have the dictatorship of the proletariat or the working class, but the form we would have at this first stage is the dictatorship of the working people.

Build the alliance between the working class and mass of the working people; in other words, the alliance between the working class and the urban and rural bourgeoisie. At the same time, we must also build an alliance with those patriotic sections of the upper petty bourgeoisie and national bourgeoisie who are willing to help develop the country.

Ensure over a period, public ownership of the means of production. In other words, build the state sector.

Work towards the gradual transformation of agriculture along socialist lines through development of voluntary co-operative farms and state farms.

Plan the development of the economy in order to lay the basis for the building of socialism and to raise living standards.

Begin the implementation of the cultural revolution. And this cultural revolution, as all of us know, is one of the four revolutions we are building at the same time – the political, economic, scientific and technological and the cultural. And in the context of the cultural revolution, I want to emphasise three main points – the spreading of the socialist ideology, the wiping out of illiteracy and the building of a new patriotic and revolutionary-democratic intelligentsia.

Build the defence capacity of the country so as to protect it and to protect the revolution from internal and external enemies, Comrades, the applicants on Saturday in one of the six workshops came back reporting that they were very concerned about the fact that there were so many non-party comrades who were leading the militia; and that is an area of concern that we share very strongly. We have to get more party comrades into the leadership of the militia. Just in terms of the means that we have here right now, we are short by over one fifth of the comrades that we need to operate them. Just in terms of what we have, I am not talking about what is to come. So if comrades are not prepared to come out and learn to use those means, then it means that other comrades out there, hopefully supporters and strong sympathisers would be the ones using them, which means that at the appropriate time we won’t even have the guarantee that the guns can’t be turned back on us. So I really hope comrades will take that comment from the workshop seriously.

Develop proletarian internationalism. As representatives of the working class in Grenada, we have to ensure that our working class and all the working people always demonstrate maximum solidarity with all international working class struggles. That is a fundamental responsibility.

Develop equal and friendly relations with all governments in the world, a except the fascist military dictatorship and apartheid types. That is why comrades, we have been making trips to different countries in Latin America like Mexico, Venezuela, Ecuador, Panama and so on. That is why in a few days time we leave for France to another state visit. We must develop relations with all different kinds of countries – some of them revolutionary-democratic, some of them social-democratic, some of them, like in the case of many in CARICOM, straight pro-capitalist and pro-imperialist in outlook.

Build rapidly our links with the Socialist World, especially the Soviet Union. And here I should hardly need to say more; we have just come back from an important visit to the land of Lenin, the Soviets in the last two days have arrived, nine of them including the Ambassador and their Embassy is about to be opened and so on. So these links and relations are building reasonably satisfactory.

 

THE PRESENT PERIOD

 

Coming out of all of this comrades, what are the tasks as seen by the Central Committee?

The first task is sinking the ideas of Marxism/Leninism among the working class and the working people. The main vehicle for this comrades is socialism classes. The Central Committee feels very strongly that this is the Number One task. And of course, there can be only one Number One task, and this the Central Committee regards as Number One – sinking the ideas of Marxism – Leninism among the working class and the working people. The fact of the matter is that a national democratic revolution can be turned back easily. For example in the case of Nasser’s Egypt, not withstanding the years of hard work put in by Nasser and his party into trying to build the national democratic revolution in Egypt. After his death it took only a few years to roll back all that had been accomplished. And there were several reasons. One, the party was not in fact built along Leninist vanguard lines and secondly, because the ideas of Marxism/Leninism had not taken root, there was no deep class consciousness in Egypt. We know that in many of these national democratic revolutions – in Iraq, Somalia, Algeria and so on – the fact is that the ideas of Marxism/Leninism were and are not being spread. And therefore, with the ideological work being weak, at a certain point it becomes easy for forces opposed to revolutionary transformation to overturn what had been accomplished.

The second task, comrades, the organisation of the working class and the working people through their trade unions, their organs for popular power, their mass organisations and through sports and culture – the Organisation of the working class and the working people.

Thirdly, comrades, strengthening the Leninist character of the party by bringing in the best elements of the working people and in particular the working class, and through building the internal organisation of the Party.

Fourthly comrades, building the economy along the path of socialist orientation, thus providing more material benefits for the masses and laying the basis for the construction of socialism.

The fifth task, developing the defence capacity of the country through building the militia both quantitatively and qualitatively by strengthening the influence of the Party in the militia.

We believe very firmly, comrades, that the tasks have been put in the correct order of priority by the Central Committee. Unless the party as a whole feels very strongly about this, and we decide to change this prioritisation, these priorities in the order outlined will stand as 1.2.3.4. and 5. You cannot have two number ones and you can’t have three number twos. One is one and two is two. So we have to look at our workplans and committees and look at the Programmes that we are into and revise them to make sure that they are in line with the line of march set by the Central Committee. One is one, Two is two, Three is three, Four is four and Five is five. Because, comrades, as you know another historic weakness of ours has been to set priorities one day and then the very next day to break the priorities that we have set; so we really need this time to take a very strong and firm position on this question.

 

THE SUBJECTIVE FACTOR – THE PARTY

 

Comrades I want to close, but what I want to close by saying will take another fifteen minutes or so. I want to close by going into the question of the subjective factor, in other words the party, a very brief history of the party’s development and the criteria for Party membership at this time.

Over the past nine and a half years, our Party has passed through many stages of development; all of us know that. We have analysed recently that there have been six major stages that the Party has gone through. The first stage began on the 11th March, 1973, with the merger, when came NJM out of JEWEL and MAP led by intelligentsia and rural petty-bourgeoisie. The Strategy adopted was one of mass mobilisation with seizure of power coming through mass mobilisation, general strike, street marches anal thereafter insurrection. Mistakes were made, a deep class approach was not taken. no attempt was made to build a Leninist Party, there was an over-reliance on spontaneity and the possibilities of crowd politics. That period, comrades, March ’73 to April ’74 is the period of mass mobilisation in action. Using the issue of Gairy’s incorrect approach to the question of independence as a base we went around the country agitating the masses for popular insurrection. During that same period in fact, within the first two months of the Party being formed, we liberated 51 rifles from Gairy. It is true we did not hold them for as long as we would have liked; we had them for one year and then Belmar took them back, but in fact we stole 51 rifles as part of that preparation.

During this period of mass mobilisation, we held the People Convention on Independence and the massively attended People’s Congress where five historic, but nonetheless ultra-leftist, decisions were taken. You remember the decisions? Firstly, we tried Gairy, found him guilty of 27 crimes and gave him two weeks to resign. We suggested that a National Unity Council should be elected and a National Unity Council was elected and we said it would have the task of supervising the orderly transition to power of the new regime. We also decided that the people would take steps to remove the Gairy dictatorship if he did not resign within 2 weeks. So undoubtedly, this was ultra-leftism in action. Nonetheless the major weakness of this period was the subjective factor; the fact that a Leninist approach to party building and to strategy and tactics were not adopted; and this is notwithstanding the notable achievements of the period, including the publication of our Manifesto.

After the defeat . . .

After the defeat in January ’74 the Party held its first major evaluation in April 1974, we were then exactly one year and one month old. We spent a few days, a whole week-end, looking at the Party and trying to decide where we went wrong and what corrective action was needed. That is when we decided in theory and in principle that we should build a Leninist Party. That decision was taken in April ’74 but in practice that decision was not implemented for many years. In fact, there was a constant struggle within the Party to get Leninist principles, in practice and in a concrete way going but it was always an uphill struggle, particularly on the need for collective study. In this second period, that is from April ’74 to June ’77, the Party was very much going through its period of early childhood, though our contesting of the 1976 General Elections and our policy on Alliances were evidence of a developing political and ideological maturity.

In the time period, July ’77 to August ’78, the party did make a qualitative leap forward in terms of Leninist standards and principles. That is the period when we stepped up our work among the working class, the work was not sufficiently deep, but at least it was starting. We tried to all different kinds of countries – some of them revolutionary-democratic, some of them social-democratic, some of them, like in the case of many in CARICOM, straight pro-capitalist and pro-imperialist in outlook.

Build rapidly our links with the Socialist World, especially the Soviet Union. And here I should hardly need to say more; we have just come back from an important visit to the land of Lenin, the Soviets in the last two days have arrived, nine of them including the Ambassador and their Embassy is about to be opened and so on. So these links and relations are building reasonably satisfactory.

 

THE PRESENT PERIOD

 

Coming out of all of this comrades, what are the tasks as seen by the Central Committee?

The first task is sinking the ideas of Marxism/Leninism among the working class and the working people. The main vehicle for this comrades is socialism classes. The Central Committee feels very strongly that this is the Number One task. And of course, there can be only one Number One task, and this the Central Committee regards as Number One – sinking the ideas of Marxism – Leninism among the working class and the working people. The fact of the matter is that a national democratic revolution can be turned back easily. For example in the case of Nasser’s Egypt, not withstanding the years of hard work put in by Nasser and his party into trying to build the national democratic revolution in Egypt. After his death it took only a few years to roll back all that had been accomplished. And there were several reasons. One, the party was not in fact built along Leninist vanguard lines and secondly, because the ideas of Marxism/Leninism had not taken root, there was no deep class consciousness in Egypt. We know that in many of these national democratic revolutions – in Iraq, Somalia, Algeria and so on – the fact is that the ideas of Marxism/Leninism were and are not being spread. And therefore, with the ideological work being weak, at a certain point it becomes easy for forces opposed to revolutionary transformation to overturn what had been accomplished.

The second task, comrades, the organisation of the working class and the working people through their trade unions, their organs for popular power, their mass organisations and through sports and culture – the Organisation of the working class and the working people.

Thirdly, comrades, strengthening the Leninist character of the party by bringing in the best elements of the working people and in particular the working class, and through building the internal organisation of the Party.

Fourthly comrades, building the economy along the path of socialist orientation, thus providing more material benefits for the masses and laying the basis for the construction of socialism.

The fifth task, developing the defence capacity of the country through building the militia both quantitatively and qualitatively by strengthening the influence of the Party in the militia.

We believe very firmly, comrades, that the tasks have been put in the correct order of priority by the Central Committee. Unless the party as a whole feels very strongly about this, and we decide to change this prioritisation, these priorities in the order outlined will stand as 1.2.3.4. and 5. You cannot have two number ones and you can’t have three number twos. One is one and two is two. So we have to look at our workplans and committees and look at the Programmes that we are into and revise them to make sure that they are in line with the line of march set by the Central Committee. One is one, Two is two, Three is three, Four is four and Five is five. Because, comrades, as you know another historic weakness of ours has been to set priorities one day and then the very next day to break the priorities that we have set; so we really need this time to take a very strong and firm position on this question.

 

THE SUBJECTIVE FACTOR – THE PARTY

 

Comrades I want to close, but what I want to close by saying will take another fifteen minutes or so. I want to close by going into the question of the subjective factor, in other words the party, a very brief history of the party’s development and the criteria for Party membership at this time.

Over the past nine and a half years, our Party has passed through many stages of development; all of us know that. We have analysed recently that there have been six major stages that the Party has gone through. The first stage began on the 11th March, 1973, with the merger, when came NJM out of JEWEL and MAP led by intelligentsia and rural petty-bourgeoisie. The Strategy adopted was one of mass mobilisation with seizure of power coming through mass mobilisation, general strike, street marches anal thereafter insurrection. Mistakes were made, a deep class approach was not taken. no attempt was made to build a Leninist Party, there was an over-reliance on spontaneity and the possibilities of crowd politics. That period, comrades, March ’73 to April ’74 is the period of mass mobilisation in action. Using the issue of Gairy’s incorrect approach to the question of independence as a base we went around the country agitating the masses for popular insurrection. During that same period in fact, within the first two months of the Party being formed, we liberated 51 rifles from Gairy. It is true we did not hold them for as long as we would have liked; we had them for one year and then Belmar took them back, but in fact we stole 51 rifles as part of that preparation.

During this period of mass mobilisation, we held the People Convention on Independence and the massively attended People’s Congress where five historic, but nonetheless ultra-leftist, decisions were taken. You remember the decisions? Firstly, we tried Gairy, found him guilty of 27 crimes and gave him two weeks to resign. We suggested that a National Unity Council should be elected and a National Unity Council was elected and we said it would have the task of supervising the orderly transition to power of the new regime. We also decided that the people would take steps to remove the Gairy dictatorship if he did not resign within 2 weeks. So undoubtedly, this was ultra-leftism in action. Nonetheless the major weakness of this period was the subjective factor; the fact that a Leninist approach to party building and to strategy and tactics were not adopted; and this is notwithstanding the notable achievements of the period, including the publication of our Manifesto.

After the defeat . . .

After the defeat in January ’74 the Party held its first major evaluation in April 1974, we were then exactly one year and one month old. We spent a few days, a whole week-end, looking at the Party and trying to decide where we went wrong and what corrective action was needed. That is when we decided in theory and in principle that we should build a Leninist Party. That decision was taken in April ’74 but in practice that decision was not implemented for many years. In fact, there was a constant struggle within the Party to get Leninist principles, in practice and in a concrete way going but it was always an uphill struggle, particularly on the need for collective study. In this second period, that is from April ’74 to June ’77, the Party was very much going through its period of early childhood, though our contesting of the 1976 General Elections and our policy on Alliances were evidence of a developing political and ideological maturity.

In the time period, July ’77 to August ’78, the party did make a qualitative leap forward in terms of Leninist standards and principles. That is the period when we stepped up our work among the working class, the work was not sufficiently deep, but at least it was starting. We tried to

 

 

POTENTIAL APPLICANTS TO APPLICANTS

 

From our experience, comrades, these are the people who are most likely to move to Marxism/Leninism. These comrades are then invited to join classes where they are tested to see whether they are hostile to, or accepting of the ideas of Marxism Leninism. If they are not anti-communist, and if they continue 😮 work well and show an honest approach, they are admitted as Applicants. And as all comrades know the period of applicancy is one year. That gives both the Party and the applicant the time to judge whether the applicant really accepts the science of Marxism/Leninism and is willing to makes the sacrifices necessary to become a Party member.

 

APPLICANTS TO CANDIDATE MEMBERS

 

When assessing an applicant for promotion to Candidate Member the following five points are looked at:-

Whether the applicant accepts the principles of Marxism/Leninism and shows willingness to continue to develop.

Whether the applicant has been working consistently and effectively in his/her [blank space] of political work and developing in terms of organisational skills.

Whether the applicant has in practice accepted party discipline, in practice.

Whether the applicant has good relations with the masses, including Party members and non-party members with whom he works in his Union, Mass Organisation, Army, Workplace etc.

Whether the Applicant continues to be of good character so as to present an example to the masses he/she comes in contact with; whether certain petty bourgeois traits such as individualism, hostility to criticism, arrogance, indiscipline and so on are being eroded; and whether proletarian qualities such as respect for the working class, co-operativeness and co-operation, discipline, modesty, self criticism are being built. If accepted as a Candidate member, another year would now elapse before the comrade is eligible for consideration for full membership.

 

CANDIDATE MEMBERS TO MEMBERS

 

At this stage, the stage of moving from Candidate Member to Member, the Party looks for the fullest possible development of six factors.

Ideological development as seen in a development of the ability to analyse and cope well with many different situations and to correctly apply strategy and tactics – the essence of correct Marxism/Leninism Leadership.

The development of correct leadership. A professional approach to his/her political work, expressing Leninist organisational standards in all aspects of the work.

The development of an ability to supervise and guide the work of junior party comrades.

The removal of petty bourgeois character faults and the development of a character which provides an outstanding example to other party comrades and the masses alike.

The development of very good relations with the masses and other party comrades.

The development of the technical and professional skills needed by the comrade in his or her job.

Comrades, some comrades feel that it takes too long to become a full member in our Party. Some comrades feel it is rough enough to have applicants, then candidate members and then members so that on top of that to have Potential Applicants is really just pushing the pace too much. And yet the truth is that some comrades in the Party are right now proposing another now category of not just Potential Applicants but of Prospective Potential Applicant, to make it even more difficult to gain entry. The fact is, comrades, that we feel it is correct in our situation for us to have this long process of what, at one level, can be seen as probation before comrades can become full members. We think it is important now because at the level of party leadership we want to keep the number down; in fact at the level of the Central Committee of the Party, our anxiety and concern is to see the Party lifted in terms of quantity and quality in the shortest possible time. But we also know from experience that this whole question of coming to accept full membership in the party and really internationalism and operationalising in a serious way party discipline and party duties is something that does take time to really sink home. Sometimes comrades might last two or three years but then on a certain issue when the class struggle is really heightened they break and then leave the Party.

The truth is that it is not really a case of the Party Leadership laying down harsh conditions; it is real life and the demand of the struggle that make it necessary for us to have these difficult conditions and for us to ensure that comrades who are full members, and also candidate members, are truly the finest representatives of the working class and the most steeled in struggle, in discipline, in dedication, in commitment and in total commitment for the working class and their interests. That is not the C.C. laying laws down, that is real life laying the laws down. And that is why comrades, we feel very strongly that these criteria are critical and necessary.

We believe it must become . . .

We believe it must become more and more difficult for comrades to become full members and candidate members and it must become more difficult for new comrades to remain as members and candidate members; and those who are unwilling to live up to the demands of this membership would have to be moved. We believe comrades that this stage of our process requires this. Being a Communist, comrades means becoming a different kind of person. Our society is deeply petty bourgeois and this means the majority of our people are deeply individualistic, ill-disciplined, disorganised, unproletarian, hostile to criticism and so on. Many in the middle strata and intelligentsia often find it difficult to relate as equals with the working people while at the same time many working people lack confidence in dealing with certain types of people. It takes time for a new proletarian person to be built. It takes time for a Communist to be built. So in reality, comrades, promotion is not decided on by the Party but by the development of comrades themselves.

On behalf of the Central Committee of our Party, I want to congratulate all the comrades who have been recently promoted from applicants to candidate members who are here with us today for the first time in that capacity, and who as a result of that new status have assumed new rights, duties and responsibilities. I also want to congratulate in advance those comrades in this room who will shortly be promoted from candidate members to full members. Comrades now know the basis on which they have been promoted. Those comrades who have not been promoted at this time will also, we hope understand and accept the reasons why they have not been promoted.

We believe comrades, that this line of march will equipt (sic) us to go into the field and to move rapidly to ensure that this first stage of the path we are on – the socialist orientation stage – is rapidly built. We believe that we have correctly defined the new tasks required to handle the new situation that has developed. We believe that as Party, individually and collectively, we must now develop ourselves into becoming more professional, more disciplined, more Leninist so that we would be able to meet the demands of this period. We also believe firmly that the path we have chosen is the ONLY correct one. We believe that this path would certainly bring us to our second major historical objective to seeing socialism, of seeing socialist construction achieved in our country, thus ensuring that the working class in Grenada would assume their rightful role and become fully emancipated for the first time.

LONG LIVE THE NEW JEWEL MOVEMENT!

LONG LIVE THE MEMBERS, CANDIDATE MEMBERS AND APPLICANTS OF OUR PARTY!

LONG LIVE THE REVOLUTIONARY HISTORY OF OUR PARTY!

LONG LIVE THE WORKING CLASS OF GRENADA!

LONG LIVE THE INTERNATIONAL WORKING CLASS!

LONG LIVE PROLETARIAN INTERNATIONALISM!

LONG LIVE THE GRENADA REVOLUTION!

FORWARD FROM SOCIALIST ORIENTATION TO SOCIALIST CONSTRUCTION!

FORWARD EVER! BACKWARD NEVER!

 

Well Mr Gonsalves, take your pick and let us know.

OUR PRIME MINISTER IS A LIAR

Unfortunately Ralph Gonsalves is known as a self confessed liar. He told us himself he sometimes tells lies. Since then he has lied to the people of SVG and lied to in parliament to parliament.

Since he told us he was a liar, I have never believed a word that he says.

Gonsalves put his signature to an agreement, whilst at the time knowing it to be unconstitutional and unenforceable. Then told lies to the teachers, telling them the agreement was the best agreement they ever had.

He said “We will hunt them down until the exist no more” then denied to parliament that he ever said such a thing, but it had been recorded when he said it.

Liars are thieves, they steal the truth. Gonsalves himself told us “show me a liar and I will show you a thief” [his words not mine]

Liars lie to deceive, they are guilty of deception.

Therefore is a liar guilty of deception and theft, is a man that is a self confessed and a proven liar, a fit man to swear an oath in court? Is he fit to act as an officer of the court? is he fit to practice as a lawyer? is he fit to be a minister of government? is he fit to be in public office?

From the time that he admitted to being a liar, which I took as a self confession, can we ever believe again anything that he writes, says or does?

Should any lawyer, Judge, Court or citizen ever believe anything he says under oath?

Because to be found a liar is one thing but to admit that you sometimes tell lies is something even greater, because when are you lying? and when are you being truthful? if ever.

Lie = lie2

n noun an intentionally false statement. or a situation involving deception or founded on a mistaken impression: she had been living a lie.

n verb (lies, lying, lied) tell a lie or lies. or to (of a thing) present a false impression.

lies = [verb] tells a lie or lies or to present a false impression (of a thing) .

lying = [verb] telling or tells a lie or lies or to present a false impression (of

a thing) .

lied = told or tells a lie or lies or to present a false impression (of

a thing)

Liar = [noun] a person who tells lies

Deception = [noun] the action of deceiving. or a thing that deceives.

Deceive = [verb] to deliberately cause someone to believe something that is untrue.

Deceiver = [noun] a person that sets out to deceive or that commits

deception.

Truth = noun (plural truths ) the quality or state of being true. Ø(also the

truth) that which is true as opposed to false. Øa fact or belief that is

accepted as true.

Theft = [noun] the action or crime of stealing.

Thief = [noun] (plural thieves) a person who steals another person’s

property, especially by stealth and without using force or threat

of violence.