LALIT has chosen not to align a candidate for the by-election in Belle Rose – Q. Bornes.
Our reason is that, while electoral stakes are high for the bourgeois opposition parties, political stakes are low. In fact, there are none of the important political issues facing Mauritius on the agenda. All that is being decided is how many votes each party can garner – by hook or by crook – to strengthen their bargaining power in the coming battle for alliances before the general elections. It is a macho fight. To make matters worse, with the absence of the MSM, which cannot face an electoral challenge with all its terrible problems, the fight is amongst only opposition parties!
So, the programs for the by-election are completely banal, even a-political, as are the slogans: “Tous ensemble avec Nita Juddoo”, or “Napa soutir pouritir”, or even less original Mouvement Patriotique taking Roshni Muneeram’s 2014 plagiarism of Obama’s slogan, “Ansam nu Kapav”.
LALIT’s decision whether to field candidates in any election to bourgeois state bodies is a tactical one. It depends on the stakes in the election. So, before each election, we discuss it in our branches and then decide. But, we always have voting guidelines, a mo-dord.
Our mo-dord for this by-election is to go to the polling station on 17 December and to cast a “blank vote”. This kind of vote can be a vital political action. The method we propose it so put one big cross on the whole ballot paper, corner to corner, signifying none of the 40 candidates.
LALIT rejects the self-proclaimed pro-capitalist parties: PMSD, Labour, MMM, MP, Reform Party, Rezistans & Alternativ (Kugan Parapen: “Le problème n’est pas le capitalisme en soi”). We reject a candidate who has gone on US Embassy-sponsored tour (Kugan Parapen, Tania Diolle) especially when Mauritius is under US military occupation. And while the Les Verts candidate speaks to their working class program, the problem with Sylvio Michel’s party is that it allies with all the worst bourgeois parties: the PMSD, Labour, MSM and MMM. We reject any candidate who has a history of publicly exposed violent anti-woman behaviour (Jack Bizlall). None of the new parties or even independent candidates has the credibility necessary for a mo-dord to vote for them. Some 10 may desist.
Some editorialists speak of “left unity” meaning LALIT should support, or ally with, parties like Rezistans or Jack Bizlall’s. But what makes people think RA or Bizlall are “left”?
Rezistans is not “left” at all. LALIT draws attention to our opposition to Rezistans on the following grounds:
1. RA claims that they are not anti-capitalist. Their candidate goes further, claiming that “Rezistans ek Alternativ li pa pe propoz enn sanzman radikal de lekonomi, li pa pe dir ki nu return a seki dizon lemanifest du MMM an 1979 ti pe propoze anterm de nasyonalizasyon masiv de lekonomi Morisyenn eksetera” (30 October, Radio Plus). They are merely against the bad behaviour of some of “the economic elites”. LALIT is, by contrast, an anti-capitalist party. We challenge the capitalist class’s control over production.
2. Rezistans talks only, like Navin Ramgoolam, about being in favour of more “partage” and never of working people taking over production. Ashok Subron is even more specific: “Je tiens a rassurer la MSPA que les syndicats sont en faveur d’activites productives pour le pays a travers la canne….” L’Express 6 August 2010). LALIT is, by contrast, a socialist party that has a political aim for the producing classes (people who work for pay) taking over economic decisions. For this to happen there will need to be a revolutionary change, a change in the nature of the State. RA wants the present bourgeois state to become “for”.
3. Rezistans is totally discredited after their capitulation in their case against the Le Chaland Hotel due to exposure of forgery in the documents produced by AKNL. Who did the forgery? They have never said.
4. The reason Ashok Subron left LALIT was his trade union “strategy”. We have written up his sad history of dividing the working class: http://www.lalitmauritius.org/en/newsarticle/1164/working-class-unity-or-bureaucratic-manipulation
Our opposition to Jack Bizlall is on the grounds that he is only “left” because he says he is, not because of his politics. In particular:
1. He is against the very concept of a “political party”. Since we are a political party, it would be unwise to ally with his non-party that gravitates around him.
2. He regularly dissolves his own parties – first the FMP, then the PMT, then the MPM, which was dissolved in 2014 into the Mouvement Large and then into EDP – and then resuscitates them at will.
3. He has no program, nor any regular publication to indicate what his political program is in practice.
3. Jack Bizlall is an unrepentant misogynist. He continues his attacks against LALIT women members. In L’Express of 27 August 2017, he accuses one of our woman members of aggressing him, when he is responsible for the worst anti-woman aggression – both at a public meeting and then, when mildly criticized in an article signed LALIT in a diatribe of the worst imaginable violence against women members of LALIT. Please take time to read the dossier that Mauritian journalists and trade unionists refuse to absorb, at
What LALIT Wants top of the Agenda
LALIT is perhaps the only party in the country with a proper program. That parties do not have proper programs is a sign of the decline of bourgeois democracy, and the need for a reinvigorated, proper working peoples’ democracy.
This is what should be on the political agenda, during electoral times and otherwise:
1. Land. The Land question is already on the agenda because the bosses and Government are selling off all the arable land, acre by acre, to millionaires from the world jet-set class of capitalists. LALIT calls for democratic control of all expanses of land. This includes land for production, for food security and for export, and for housing for all.
2. Peace. LALIT calls for the closing down of the US base on Diego Garcia, as part of the re-unification of the country, the right to return, and the need for demilitarization.
3. Work for All. Job creation must be in the hands of the people. This is the only way to ensure that jobs are created. So, it means the working class must control the capital produced by past workers.
4. Democratic Control of production: LALIT is not just calling for “sharing” or “distribution”, like Labour and RA, but for control over production. Once the working class controls production, decisions will be taken democratically about how much to re-invest, how much to pay in wages, and how much to save.
5. Mother tongue: The Kreol language must be introduced, alongside existing colonial languages, in the National Assembly, and as the medium of instruction for content subjects (as dual medium if necessary with English.)
All these five demands are part of a process of “decolonization-linked-with-the-struggle-for-socialism”.