The NDR is fast turning SA into the most racially dirigiste state in the world – in which the prospects of individuals are once again determined by the colour of their skin and not the content of their character. So, for example, Coloured employees of the Department of Correctional Services in the Western Cape are told they will not be promoted because they have exceeded their racial quota; Coloured fishermen’s quotas may be limited to their 9% share of the population; and the black middle class and elite are given automatic preference over less educated whites from poorer backgrounds.

Mr Cronin quotes the Freedom Charter with approval: so he should – because it, the armed struggle, the NDR and the current radical second phase of the NDR have all been initiated by the SACP. His party refuses to contest elections under its own banner – because, as it says, elections are not the only route to state power. According to the SACP, “the NDR is a foundation for, and the most direct route to, building socialism (i.e. communism) in the concrete conditions of our country”.

How, one wonders, can the dictatorship of the proletariat – which Mr Cronin and his colleagues in the Congress of South African Trade Unions specifically support – be reconciled with the Constitution that he has sworn to uphold?

Dave Steward:Executive director, FW de Klerk Foundation

First published in Business Day/
12 August 2015