Joint Statement of the Revolutionary and Progressive organizations of the world, April 2020
The current COVID-19 crisis presents new challenges to the people of the world. As it stands, more than two million people have been infected with the virus throughout the world, with over a hundred thousand people succumbing to the disease.
In a bid to curb the spread of the virus, governments throughout the world have been putting in place measures geared towards controlling the damage. As this happens, however, we are witnessing, on a global scale, a major rolling back of the gains of popular struggles over the years, with fundamental rights and freedoms being curtailed. The excuse for this, expectedly, is the fight against coronavirus.
The principal responsibility of revolutionary movements and organizations throughout the world is agitating, educating, mobilizing and organizing the masses with a view to bringing a total overhaul of the system. In our day to day agitation, it is our responsibility to present to the masses a clear analysis of the state of affairs throughout the world in order to equip them with the necessary knowledge to combat the system.
It cannot be denied that a major global counter-offensive against basic principles of freedom is underway. In fact, in dealing with the COVID-19 crisis, governments, through their organs of violence, have unleashed a brutal handling of citizens, in total disregard to basic human rights as guaranteed in the constitutions of many countries.
In Kenya, for instance, cases of deaths resulting from police brutality number 16; double the number of deaths resulting from coronavirus. In Mombasa, the Kenyan security forces were on record assaulting thousands of innocent citizens waiting to cross the Likoni Ferry channel. In South Africa, throughout the enforced lockdown, the state has continued to violently evict shack dwellers throughout the country, demolishing their homes and burning down their possessions with total disregard to basic human rights. In Nigeria, the number of deaths resulting from state repression now number 13, while those that have succumbed to coronavirus stands at 10. Cases of gender-based violence are also on the rise throughout Africa and the rest of the world, with some countries witnessing an upsurge in criminal and gang related activity. In addition, we are experiencing a sharp increase in the cost of living, with prices of commodities on the rise due to the speculation that is characteristic of the present chaotic economic system. Most of the population in the Global South lives on a hand-to-mouth basis, relying on daily wages for survival, a situation that puts them in an even worse position during this crisis and the lockdowns ensuing.
Throughout Africa, and the rest of the world, it is becoming apparent that the lockdowns imposed by governments are nothing but a cover-up for increased state repression. It is also clear that the state is opposed to any form of self-organizing by the people, as in the case of Kenya, where the government has banned private distribution of foodstuff and other supplies.
In this regard, we, the revolutionary and progressive movements and organizations of the world, denounce all attempts by governments across the globe to roll back the gains of protracted popular struggles over the years. We strongly condemn all acts of state repression directed towards the people. We call for a people-based approach in dealing with the COVID-19 crisis, involving the setting up of people’s committees among the communities. Above all, we call for the nationalization of all healthcare services and subsequently an end to the commodification of essential services throughout the globe.
Revolutionary Socialist League (Kenya), https://redflagkenya.wordpress.com/
Revolutionary Socialist Vanguard (Sympathising Section of the RCIT in Nigeria), https://revolutionarysocialistvanguard.wordpress.com/
Federation of Informal Workers of Nigeria, https://ne-np.facebook.com/pg/FIWONNIG/community/
Nyayo ya Mwafrika / African Footprints (Tanzania)
Socialist Youth League (Zambia), https://www.facebook.com/socialistyouthleaguezambia/
Pan-Afrikan Consciousness Renaissance (Nigeria), https://m.facebook.com/pacorenaissance/?ref=bookmarks
Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (Brazil, Mexico, Pakistan, Kashmir, Sri Lanka, South Korea, Israel/Occupied Palestine, Yemen, Nigeria, Kenya, Russia, Britain, Germany and Austria), www.thecommunists.net