The 54th Congress of the Communist Party of Britain took place successfully last weekend, November 19-20. More than 100 full and consultative delegates and visitors participated in extensive debates and discussions.
The main resolution 'Block the Ruling Class Offensive and Win a Left-led Government' set out the party's analysis of the current national and international situation and its campaigning priorities for the coming period. A special session considered how to take forward the process of 'communist renewal', which seeks to enhance the party's recruitment, activitism, membership retention and political education.
The congress and several fringe meetings heard from representatives of the communist parties of Cuba and Venezuela, the German Communist Party, the Tudeh Party of Iran, the Communist Party of Ireland and the Iraqi Communist Party.Visitors from Ukraine, where the communist party is fighting government moves to ban it, brought the congress to its feet. Other guests came from the communist and parties of Greece, Bangladesh and Cyprus and the Chinese and Cuban embassies (ambassador Teresita Vicente Sotolongo). Congress delegates also saw video messages from general secretaries Sitaram Yechury of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and Oscar Figuera of the Communist Party of Venezuela. Messages were received from more than 30 other communist and workers' parties across the world. An emergency resolution condemned Turkish government and state repression of the Kurdish people.
Special presentations were made to former party chairpersons Anita Halpin and Bill Greenshields, who have stepped down from the CP executive committee. The congress elected the following members to serve as the Communist Party's leadership over the next two years: Nisar Ahmed, Andy Bain, Mollie Brown, Ben Chacko , Andy Chaffer, Tony Conway, Ramon Corria, John Foster, Alex Gordon, Robert Griffiths, Jonathan Havard, Owain Holland, Steve Johnson, Bernadette Keveaney, Tam Kirby, Trish Lavelle, Martin Levy, Tommy Morrison , Liz Payne, Carol Stavris, Graham Stevenson, Joanne Stevenson, Ruth Styles, John Taylor, Anita Wright , Nick Wright.
The General Secretary's address to Congress can be read in full here.