The Central Committee of the PCP, meeting on February 1, 2022, analysed the results of the early elections for the Assembly of the Republic of January 30, 2022, and the resulting political framework; examined the national situation; evaluated aspects of the international situation; pointed out lines of action, political initiative and the strengthening of the Party, to respond to the demands that are placed.
I -The political framework resulting from the elections for the Assembly of the Republic and the solutions to the country's problems
1. The holding of the elections did not dispel the problems and difficulties faced by the workers, the people and the country. As the PCP stated, what the country needed was solutions, not elections.
The CDU [United Democratic Coalition], the PCP and the PEV [Ecologist Party The Greens], had a constant intervention that, without squandering any possibility of defence, restoration and achievement of rights, prevented setbacks and materialised advances that reflected positively in the lives of millions of people. The evolution of the country's situation demanded that solutions be sought for national problems, for the lives of the workers and people, but instead, the PS, aiming for an absolute majority, in convergence with the President of the Republic, pushed forward the holding of elections.
Three months later, the need for the response that was refused by the PS Government last October becomes clearer. The problems that weigh on the daily lives of those who live and work in the country, and those that mark and hinder national development, remain and increase, calling for measures and responses that their economic and social dimension and expression demand.
The political framework and the balance of power resulting from the elections are marked by the absolute majority of the PS, obtained despite its attitude of evading the necessary responses to the country, benefiting from an intense promotion of bipolarisation. An absolute majority that leaves the PS in a position to take its commitment to right-wing policies further, with the options of subordination to the interests of big capital and the impositions of the European Union.
The PCP reaffirms its commitment to intervene to solve the country's problems. Every vote and every MP elected by the CDU will count towards this path, which requires the participation and broad mobilisation of workers and people.
2. The result obtained by the CDU in the early legislative elections – 4.4% of the votes and 6 MPs – reflects an electoral fall with a significant loss of MPs, including the parliamentary representation of the PEV. A result that, while falling short of the work that it carried out and the decisive contribution it made to the advances and achievements in recent years, the value of the solutions it presented for national problems and the broad campaign of clarification and mobilisation for the vote that it carried out, represents a negative factor in national life.
3. In this more difficult context, the PCP reaffirms its determination to continue and intensify with confidence the intervention in defence of the interests and aspirations of the workers and people, of solutions to national problems, and for a patriotic and left-wing policy.
The PSD's [Social Democratic Party] result, below the objectives and expectations put forward, as well as the non-election of any MP by the CDS [Social Democratic Center], are inseparable from the memory of the PSD/CDS government's action. Its surrogates, IL [Liberal Initiative] and Chega [Enough], have an increase in electoral expression and in the number of MPs, influenced by the promotion made over the last few years, particularly after their entry into the Assembly of the Republic, fuelling their reactionary conceptions.
Left Bloc loses an important part of its electoral expression, even in a context of high media visibility that did not fail to occur.
There is also the maintenance of a member of the Livre [Free], in the context of a strong media coverage, and the significant reduction of the parliamentary representation of the PAN [People Animals Nature].
4.Independently of further analyses and the appreciation of shortcomings with a view to overcoming them, the results of the legislative elections are inseparable from a combination of objective and subjective factors that shaped them, namely: the operation carried out after the dissolution of the Assembly of the Republic to favour the construction of a central block, stimulating a dynamics of bipolarisation, enhanced by opinion polls and other means; the insistent lie of holding the PCP and the PEV accountable for the holding of elections, due to the non-approval of the State Budget Proposal for 2022; the abusive appropriation by the PS of the advances achieved in the defence, restoration and achievement of rights, which always resulted from the determined action of the CDU; the promotion and favouring of other political forces, namely reactionary forces, converging with the devaluation and discrimination of the CDU; carrying out an election campaign in unique and particularly difficult circumstances, arising from the well-known unforeseen circumstances; the holding of elections during an epidemic and of aggravation and instrumentalization of fear, which affected social relationships and jeopardised a work of proximity and contact so characteristic of the CDU.
5. The Central Committee of the PCP salutes the remarkable intervention of activists from the CDU, PCP, PEV, ID [Democratic Intervention] and many people without party affiliation who, with extraordinary dedication, took on the work of mobilisation and clarification to vote on the CDU, carrying out a campaign of the masses.
It salutes all the men and women and particularly the many young people, the CDU youth, who, with their militant participation, brought great energy, joy and combativeness to this campaign.
It salutes each and every one of the voters who placed their trust in the CDU, and particularly those who did so for the first time, ensuring that this support and this vote extends beyond election day in defence of their rights.
It salutes the PEV – Ecologist Party The Greens and Democratic Intervention which, together with thousands of citizens without party affiliation, are part of the United Democratic Coalition, and reaffirms the importance of the CDU, of its intervention at the institutional level and as a force and example of convergence, and of its commitment to continue and intensify the intervention and struggle in defence and advancement of rights and living conditions, for a developed and sovereign country, for a Portugal with a future.
6.The national situation is characterised by a political framework in which the absolute majority of the PS leaves it with better conditions to implement its options of subordination to the interests of big capital and submission to the European Union; by an economic and social situation with the marks resulting from decades of right-wing policies that hamper national development and exacerbate inequalities and injustices; by taking advantage of the epidemic that, beyond what it constitutes in itself, will continue to be a pretext for cutting rights and curbing freedoms; and by the revanchist action of big capital and its retrograde and reactionary projects. A situation in which it is necessary to resist, expand the struggle, promote the convergence of democrats, affirm an alternative policy.
The country is not doomed to injustices, inequalities, economic stagnation and social regression. It is not doomed to a model of low wages and pensions, to precarious work and life, to the deregulation of working hours, to increased exploitation, to growing external dependence due to the destruction of its productive capacity, to the degradation of public services and the liquidation of the [public] National Health Service, to the difficulty in accessing housing, to demographic decline and low birth rate, to the waste and alienation of instruments and resources indispensable to the sovereign development of the country and which are today handed over, mainly, to foreign monopoly groups.
We need an alternative policy that fully responds to the problems of the people and the country, which frees Portugal from constraints and impositions contrary to national interests.
A response that demands a break with right-wing policies and the adoption of a patriotic and left-wing policy. A response that confronts and breaks with the interests of big capital and that assumes the need to free the country from submission to the Euro and the impositions of the European Union. A response that involves the recovery of instruments of sovereignty; calls for public control of strategic sectors and companies; ensures an effective commitment to national production as a strategic issue for employment, development, sovereignty and the reduction of dependence and external indebtedness; assumes the defence of the interests of the workers and people and ensures a Portugal with a future.
The situation that the country faces and the structural deficits that are at its root, heightened by the impacts of the epidemic and accumulated by the absence or lack of the PS government's response, place on the order of the day the implementation of responses and solutions that, without delay, has as essential objectives:
- Promote economic development; the general increase in wages as a national emergency, including a significant increase of the average wage and of the Minimum Wage; ensure the repeal of the grievous norms of labour legislation, including the expiry of collective bargaining; dignify careers and professions; fight precariousness; reduce working hours and combat their deregulation; valorise work and workers; ensure the rights of youth and women.
- Guarantee the rights of children and parents, free day care centres and a public network; ensure stability in job, working hours and housing, increase wages; promote birth rates, reverse the demographic decline, stop emigration.
- Increase pensions and social benefits; fight poverty; value long contributory careers; ensure a public network of equipment and support services for the elderly and people with disabilities.
- Defend and reinforce the National Health Service as a guarantee of the Portuguese people's right to healthcare, fixing and attracting professionals, valorising careers and pay, guaranteeing more medical appointments, tests, surgeries, family doctors and nurses for all; combat the favouring of the business of private healthcare groups.
- Defend and valorise Social Security, Education, Science, Culture, Sports; strengthen public services to respond to the needs of populations and of territorial cohesion.
- Guarantee the right to decent housing, with the increase of public housing, stability and regulation of rental prices, the fight against speculation; as well as the progressive gratuitousness and reinforcement of public transport, assuring the population's right to mobility.
- Guarantee fiscal justice by providing the country with the means it needs, with the reduction of taxation on labour income, in particular the lower and middle incomes, on consumption and MSMEs, and standing up to the tax privileges of big capital, guaranteeing its effective and fair taxation.
- Guarantee access to energy (electricity, natural gas, LPG, fuel) at prices affordable with the purchasing power of the Portuguese and the defence of the national economy.
- Guarantee the right to a healthy environment and ecological balance, with the fight against the commodification of nature and the prevention and mitigation of the effects of climate change.
7.The workers and the people can count on the PCP and its decisive intervention in the defence and affirmation of their rights within a framework of an absolute majority of the PS and in the fight against reactionary and anti-democratic projects.
Today, as always, it is in the PCP that you will find this ever-present force for the fights and struggles of the workers and people in defence of their interests and aspirations.
II -The mass struggle
The Central Committee of the PCP values the significance and dimension of the struggles that have taken place in recent months, among which stand out the workers' struggles for wage increases and for better working conditions.
To be highlighted are the struggles of workers from the hospitality sector, road passenger transport companies, large supermarkets, glass industry, canning industry, private social welfare institutions, nurses, bank workers, postal and postal services, forest guards, local government workers, cleaning, workers from Caixa Geral de Depósitos, Sumol-Compal, FNAC, Metro do Porto and Lisbon, Sekurit, Central do Pego, the refineries in Matosinhos and Sines, Euroresinas, Amarsul, Lisnave Yards, Casa da Música, Algar, OTIS Elevadores, EDP contact centres, Empresa de Cervejas da Madeira or Efacec.
The country's situation, marked by low wages, precariousness, deregulation of working hours, as well as the degradation of public services and economic dependence, demands the development of mass struggle, uniting workers and people around their interests and claims.
The Central Committee of the PCP salutes the workers' struggle and calls for their organisation and intervention for the increase in wages, the valorisation of careers and professions, the reduction of working hours to 35 hours per week, the fight against the deregulation of hours, the eradication of precariousness, the repeal of grievous norms of labour legislation and in defence of collective bargaining.
The Central Committee of the PCP calls for a vast participation in the commemorations of March 8, International Women's Day, namely in the National Women's Demonstration convened by the MDM [Women's Democratic Movement] for March 5 and 12, in Porto and Lisbon, and in the actions of the Week of Equality from March 7 to 11, by CGTP-IN [General Confederation of Portuguese Workers – National Inter-union]; in the demonstrations promoted by Interjovem/CGTP-IN in Lisbon and Porto, on March 31, regarding the National Youth Day; in the popular commemorations of the 48th. anniversary of the 25th of April; as well as in the celebrations of the 1st of May promoted by the CGTP-IN, which at the present time assume a redoubled importance and significance.
III - International situation
The international situation is experiencing a serious and dangerous worsening as a result of the exploitative and aggressive onslaught by imperialism.
Faced with the sharpening of the contradictions of capitalism, big capital is using the pandemic situation to heighten exploitation, foster monopoly concentration and ensure its economic and political domination, placing the costs of an announced crisis, that the pandemic has accelerated, on workers and peoples, and further aggravating social inequalities and development inequalities between countries.
In this context, from the Middle East to Latin America, from Africa to Europe and Asia, US imperialism, with the support of its allies, pursues its aggressive policy against countries and peoples that do not submit to its dictates and that assert their sovereignty, and intensifies its policy of confrontation against China and Russia.
The increase in military expenditure, the promotion of the arms race, the expansion of warmongering alliances and partnerships, the trivialisation of militarism, interference, threats and blackmail in international relations, the intensification of the ideological offensive, the imposition of sanctions and blockades and the attempt to strangle and condition the development of countries and instigate their political and economic isolation, is demonstrating that the USA spares no ways to try to counteract its relative decline, within the framework of capitalism’s structural crisis and the profound process of rearrangement of forces that continues at the world level.
The Central Committee of the PCP condemns the escalation of confrontation promoted by the USA, NATO and the EU against Russia. An escalation that, being expressed on the military, economic and political levels, is being sustained by an intense campaign of misinformation, and constitutes a serious threat to peace.
In this context, the inclusion of Ukraine in the aggressive strategy of US imperialism – which turned this country into an instrument of its dangerous provocative action – assumes particular seriousness, as well as the insistence of the USA and NATO in its policy of encircling Russia, with the rejection of the proposals presented by this country – namely those to put an end to the continuous enlargement of NATO and the installation of military resources along its borders – with a view to promoting security in Europe.
Portugal must dissociate itself from the aggressive policy of the USA, NATO and the EU, in accordance with the Constitution of the Portuguese Republic and within the scope of its foreign relations, must contribute to the peaceful resolution of international conflicts, détente and peace.
We reaffirm the importance of developing the struggle against aggression and interference by imperialism, against the enlargement of NATO and for its dissolution, against the militarisation of the European Union, for peace and disarmament, in compliance with the principles of the United Nations Charter and the Final Act of the Helsinki Conference.
The Central Committee of the PCP salutes the struggle of workers and peoples that continue throughout the world in the most different conditions, taking various forms, pointing to different aims, achieving important victories.
For example, the Central Committee of the PCP expresses its solidarity and values the resistance of Syria and its people, the Palestinian people, the Yemeni people, socialist Cuba and Bolivarian Venezuela, of countries and peoples facing the aggression of imperialism, the popular struggles that have taken place in India, Colombia or Sudan, and the recent victories achieved in elections in Sandinista Nicaragua and Chile.
Aware of the dangers, but also of the potential that the international situation entails for the development of the struggle of workers and peoples, the PCP will continue its committed intervention in the strengthening of the international communist and revolutionary movement and in the deepening of its cooperation, reciprocal solidarity and unity in action, as well as in the convergence of a broad anti-imperialist front that stops and reverses the imperialist offensive and paves the way to a new international order of peace and social progress.
IV - The Party: initiative, intervention and organisation
The Central Committee of the PCP salutes the Party and JCP [Portuguese Communist Youth] militants and organisations for their militancy and intervention, under demanding conditions, in defence of the interests of the workers and populations, in the battle of the legislative elections, in the work to strengthen the Party.
The national and international situation demands initiative and struggle and the continuation of the irreplaceable action of the Party and the expansion of its influence and link to the masses, responding to the present situation, fighting for solutions, for a break with the right-wing policy, for the patriotic and left-wing alternative, exercising its vanguard role at the service of the workers, the people and the country, in the implementation of its Programme, in the affirmation of its ideal and project.
The Central Committee of the PCP, in view of the situation and the political framework, points out the need for an intervention centred on the defence of the interests and rights of the workers and people and on demanding solutions for the country, on the expansion of unitary work, on stimulating the strengthening of unitary mass organisations; in the promotion of mass struggle and clarification, intervention and political mobilisation, which includes the public sessions to be held in Lisbon (February 5), Porto (February 13) and Setúbal (February 19).
Of particular importance is the rally on March 6, in Campo Pequeno, Lisbon, which culminates the PCP’s Centenary celebrations, marks its 101st. anniversary and will constitute a great mass action inserted in the struggle for the resolution of national problems, for the improvement of the living conditions of the workers and the people, against exploitation and impoverishment, for a break with the right-wing policies, for an alternative policy, for the affirmation of the communist ideal and project.
Also noteworthy are: the celebrations of the Party's Centenary, namely with the holding of debates, meetings, exhibitions and presentation sessions of the book "100 years of struggle, at the service of the people and the homeland, for democracy and socialism", in the follow-up of important actions carried out, such as the commemorative show in Porto, in November; the development of the intervention and contact under the motto “PCP – At your side everyday”; the commemoration of the 91st. anniversary of Avante!, in February; the holding of meetings and get-together meetings in organisations included in the 101st. anniversary of the Party and the 48th. anniversary of the 25th. of April, during the second half of March and the beginning of May; the holding of political-cultural initiatives, namely on the centenary of José Saramago; and the preparation work for the 46th. edition of the Avante! Festival, which takes place on the September 2, 3 and 4.
Are also included in the present situation and with their specific traits, the preparation of actions around March 8, International Women's Day, March 24, National Student Day, and March 28, National Youth Day; the work to carry out the plan to commemorate the 48th. anniversary of the 25th. of April, to denounce fascism and combat its whitewashing, to disseminate the Revolution and its achievements, to affirm the values of April; and a priority intervention in companies and workplaces to mobilise for May Day, a great day of struggle by the workers.
The Central Committee of the PCP, within the scope of analysis, initiative and the necessary response, decides to hold meetings and plenary sessions of militants, concerning the situation, the problems of the workers and the people, the mass struggle, the mobilisation of forces and the adoption of actions and measures to strengthen party organisation and the Party's intervention in national life.
The Central Committee of the PCP stresses the need to strengthen the Party, taking advantage of the existing potential to overcome shortcomings and guarantee its irreplaceable role, implementing the guidelines of the XXI Congress, with emphasis on the reinforcement of the work of leadership and the accountability and education of cadres; the reinforcement of the organisation and intervention in companies and workplaces; strengthening of local organizations; the reinforcement of intervention with specific sectors and layers, such as youth; the recruitment of new militants in the continuation of the national recruitment campaign ”The future has a Party”; a greater and more regular insertion of Party members into Party life and activity; the adoption of measures in terms of the struggle of ideas and boosting Party press and propaganda; the work for financial independence and the collection of essential resources for this objective, namely the campaign to increase and update dues; holding assemblies of party organisations.
The PCP is an indispensable and irreplaceable force, a great party collective, which projects into the future a heritage of struggle always at the service of the people and the country. At a time that places great demands, the PCP will continue with determination and confidence the action, initiative and struggle for the necessary solutions to the problems of the workers, the people and the country, for an alternative, patriotic and left-wing policy, for an advanced democracy with the April values in the future of Portugal, for socialism.