Democratic Socialist Movement (DSM)

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6 April 2016

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DSM Osun Discusses the Economic Crises in Osun State and Nigeria

Report of the DSM Osun Second Quarter Symposium

By DSM Reporters

The Democratic Socialist Movement (DSM), Osun State Chapter held its second quarter symposium on Sunday, 03 April, 2016 at its State Secretariat at No. 123, Station Road, Osogbo. The theme of the symposium was, Osun's Economic Crisis: What caused it? What are the solutions? The subtheme was, One Year after Buhari's Victory: What has changed? In attendance were workers, retirees and members of DSM. The programme started around 1.40 p.m.

Dagga Tolar opening the discussion - photo DSM

Dagga Tolar opening the discussion - photo DSM   (Click to enlarge)

Leading the discussion was Dagga Tolar who, speaking on "One Year after Buhari's victory: What has changed?", analyzed the current economic and political challenges facing the working people and the youth. He maintained that even the minimal social programmes of the first and second republics that saw thousands of housing units, hundreds of schools and several general hospitals built and maintained, have been replaced by the logic of neo-liberalism and free market. We are told that government cannot do everything and government has no business in business. He stated that the logic of capitalism which the Buhari government subscribes to will not allow any fundamental change in the lives of the working people. This is why the government will continue to give in one way or the other to the big business class.

He maintained that only socialist programmes premised on democratic control and management of the economy. He also posited that only a working class government can effectively move the society forward. This necessitates the need to build a new working people's political alternative. The labour movement needs to build a working people platform for this purpose. He also stated that there is the need to working people to build mass resistance against all anti-poor policies.

In his contribution, Alfred Adegoke, the state coordinator of the DSM, addressed the issue of Osun economic crisis and the task ahead. He spoke extensively on the how the Aregbesola government used the resources of the state to better the lot of the rich few, through the fraudulent contract system. He called on workers to reject the half-salary policy and demand full payment of salaries. He also maintained that there is no difference among the main ruling parties of APC and PDP. The fact that many of the major politicians in the state are now in APC shows that there is no major ideological and political difference among the major parties.

Kola Ibrahim, the state secretary of DSM, maintained that workers must start to pile pressure on their leaders, to fight for and defend their rights.

Many of the attendees who spoke commended the role of DSM and gave support for the activities of the DSM. They called on DSM to organize this kind of symposium across the state, and that mobilization should go beyond meeting at secretariat. They also called for discussion with other groups such as artisans' organizations, community movements, with a view to building mass movement across the state.

Some of the participants at the symposium - photo DSM

Some of the participants at the symposium - photo DSM   (Click to enlarge)

The symposium, which ended around 4.30 p.m., was inspiring. We hope to organize more of these activities, while major proposals at the symposium will be further discussed at internal meetings of the DSM. The symposium ended with solidarity song.