By Gong Ming, People’s Daily
The Communist Party of China (CPC) always maintains close ties with the people, empathizes and works with them, and lays stress on safeguarding the fundamental interests of the Chinese people and earnestly addressing issues that concern the people the most, according to Cde Dr. Blade Nzimande, General Secretary of the South African Communist Party (SACP) and Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation of the Republic of South Africa.
It is with the genuine support and recognition from the Chinese people that the CPC has been able to unite and lead them in developing the Chinese economy and realizing massive social development advances, Nzimande said in a recent interview with People’s Daily.
This year marks the centenaries of both the CPC and the SACP, Nzimande said, noting that the two political parties “should forge ahead with the cause of socialism with great determination, resolve and courage.”
In the next 100 years, scientific socialism should achieve greater advances, and it’s expected that the CPC will lead the Chinese people to creat a better life and contribute greatly to world peace and justice, said the SACP chief.
Nzimande visited China as the General Secretary of the SACP in 1998, not long after the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and South Africa. In the following two decades or so, he has led delegations to China more than ten times.
According to Nzimande, every time he visits China he has new discoveries and new thinking about the country, and all the hundreds SACP cadres visiting China with him have been full of praise for China’s rapid economic development and the improvement in the quality of the Chinese people’s lives.
In east China’s Anhui province, Nzimande visited farmers’ market, factory, school, residential area, as well as stadium. Marveling at the results of China’s reform and opening-up, he said various parties in South Africa should learn from the experience of the CPC and combine it with the actual conditions of South Africa to promote better development of the country.
Nzimande has been impressed by the achievements of northwest China’s Qinghai province in promoting featured agriculture, increasing the income of farmers, effectively using natural resources, and protecting ecological environment.
As the Minister of Higher Education, Science and Innovation of South Africa, he pays special attention to the development of China’s higher education and scientific and technological innovation, and hopes to intensify cooperation between South Africa and China in a bid to facilitate the social and economic development of South Africa.
“In the decades that followed the establishment of the People’s Republic of China, the CPC led the development of Chinese society from the bottom rungs in the world economy to the world’s second largest national economy, surpassing many economies,” Nzimande said.
“In terms of world trade, China is the top trading partner of many countries in almost all the global regions,” he added.
Nzimande pays close attention to China’s development. According to him, China has, by formulating and implementing its five-year plans, realized impressive achievements in poverty eradication, human development, economic development, and social transformation.
As China is increasingly recognized as a responsible major country by the international community, “there is a rising number of people who mention China when developing policy and other opportunities are discussed,” Nzimande pointed out.
Nzimande appreciates Chinese President Xi Jinping’s book “Xi Jinping: The Governance of China”. He thinks the book contains profound thoughts and rich contents, and that many ideas in the book are worth learning from for the SACP.
The SACP chief believes Xi’s idea of ensuring that the Party exercises effective self-supervision and practices strict self-governance is very important for strengthening Party building. As a member of the tripartite alliance led by South Africa’s African National Congress (ANC), the SACP can draw on more of the practices of the CPC regarding strategies and plans for the development of party officials.
China and South Africa have established a sound partnership in training party officials. From July 2020 to March 2021, the National School of Government (NSG) of South Africa and the China-Africa Institute jointly held four online training seminars. Nearly 200 trainees from governments at all levels in South Africa took part in the seminars and said they would learn from China’s experience in state governance, economic development, poverty reduction and so on.
The SACP and the CPC have long-standing ties, and a history of exchanges and co-operation, which we have deepened over the past years, Nzimande said, noting that after the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the two sides quickly moved to online interactions.
The International Department of the CPC Central Committee has organized a series of video webinar between the SACP and the CPC, during which more than 20 senior officials of the SACP had discussions with Chinese experts and scholars on topics including the prevention and control of the pandemic, poverty alleviation, and Africa-China friendship.
The Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) is a bridge for cooperation and exchanges between Africa and China, said Nzimande, who has attended the forum twice. He considers it crucial for improving African people’s well-being and promoting the sustainable development of Africa, and helpful in bringing South Africa and China closer in economy, trade, science and technology, culture, and education.
In this age of economic globalization when countries in the world are interconnected and interdependent, China’s ideas of jointly building the Belt and Road and a community with a shared future for mankind aim at promoting common development of the whole of humanity and conform to the shared aspiration of people in various countries for development, he said.
“We attach great importance to the commitment made by President Xi to make the COVID-19 vaccine developed by China a global public good,” Nzimande said.
The SACP highly praised the assistance China has provided for South Africa in fighting the COVID-19, and is willing to enhance exchanges and cooperation with the CPC to overcome the pandemic and jointly push forward with the relations between South Africa and China, according to Nzimande.
Noting that China has unfolded its 14th Five-Year Plan and embarked on a new journey toward fully building a modern socialist country and is now marching toward the second centenary goal of building China into a great modern socialist country in all respects, Nzimande believes that under the leadership of the CPC, the country will continue advancing in giant strides and consolidating its development achievements, and that the Chinese people will create brighter glory.