Summary of the central report to the 9th UJC Congress

 

Given by Liudmila Alamo Dueñas, first secretary of the UJC 

Compañeras and compañeros:

ON December 5, 2004, during the closing session of the last Congress of the Union of Young Communists, we heard with emotion our Commander in Chief state, and I quote: “On summarizing the content of these heroic years of intense work and more than a few challenges, we have to feel proud of our youth, of their values, of their lineage, of their temper.” End of quote. 

For him, to whom we especially dedicate the development of this Congress, is our reaffirmation that this idea, far from becoming a motive for complacency, arose in the form of a tremendous commitment to all that the UJC will have to continue doing, and doing better, in order to never defraud the immense confidence invested in it. 

Today, with the development of this plenary session, an important cycle in the work of the organization closes, and another one opens, equally significant on account of its challenges and complexities. Five years of effort have gone by in which the dynamics confronted were diverse and the results attained demonstrate the sentiment of revolutionary commitment that accompanies the overwhelming majority of youth, but we have also been able to identify significant reserves which we must take advantage of in order to overcome deficiencies that are weighing down our labor as a vanguard movement. 

Being in that advance guard of our generation is a constant challenge to being examples and covering the wide sectors of Cuban youth, as our commitment continues being with all youth, whether they are members or not. Hence the involvement of children, adolescents and young adults in the effort needed by the country to overcome obstacles is a responsibility that centrally concerns communist members. 

The stage that we are assessing, marked by a complex scenario, where the crisis of the capitalist system is reaffirming its failure as an alternative for human development, has been characterized by numerous tasks given to new generations of Cubans and in particular to the UJC. 

Every mission was assimilated and consciously welcomed, under the precept of responding swiftly to the country’s urgencies, clearly delineated by the leadership of our Communist Party. 

In tone with that role which we had to assume, the pivots of the UJC’s National Committee between the one Congress and the next were centered on: assessing the active participation of young people in the defense of the homeland, the example of youth, recreation and the use of spare time, attention to student organizations, our leadership role in state security and internal order, our role in the economic battle, as well as the essential decisions adopted in relation to the policies concerning cadres and the relevant debate on our responsibility for labor efficiency in the public health sector. 

During the last period, and starting from the institutional reordering that the country is following, programs and projects that were attended to by our organization moved to being directed and administered by agencies and ministries related to the activities being developed within them, a correct decision that has allowed the organization to concentrate its efforts and human resources on exchanging with and training children and young people. 

However, our actions could have been much more effective and their reach even greater if, within the organization’s internal functioning, there had been better discipline among members and in the stability and training of the cadres who direct at distinct levels.

An effective and real functioning, without formal meetings, routines and bureaucracies, will allow us to overcome difficulties and analyze the organization’s problems, by raising our convening capacity, contribution and efficiency, so much needed at the present time. 

An organic process developed from the base has demonstrated the need to revolutionize that functioning with the aim of exercising a greater influence on the political-ideological training of young Cubans; this must be sustained and strengthened in work with history, making history a veritable shield, ensuring that our children know and admire their history, that they grow up understanding the basic elements of the struggle that our people have led throughout the centuries, in order that they have a conscious pride in being Cuban revolutionaries and comprehend the responsibility that we have, as a generation, to continue the battle for our sovereignty. 

In this context, the work is insufficient, as is the fact that sometimes the necessary content and nature is not given to these activities and we do not always take into account the leaders of revolutionary feats and deeds, who, in many cases, live among us and are not sufficiently utilized. 

We must not forget that the harsh years of the Special Period led to the emergence of manifestations of egotism and social indiscipline, with a negative impact on values that we had conquered. We cannot ignore the existence of one segment of youth – while not representative of the majority of our youth – whose attitudes and conduct negatively affect the noble intentions of revolutionary work, for which reason we have the duty to energetically respond to manifestations of double standards, a lack of combativeness in the face of things done badly, expectations of living comfortably without working through accumulating wealth that has nothing to do with personal sacrifice, and attempting to live with one’s back turned to the people. 

These and other acts, such as disobeying the law, apathy, consumerism and demobilization are provoking deformations by leading to the appearance of customs and habits that run counter to the development of values that are consubstantial with socialism. 

The present period has produced an increase in the subversive escalation of our enemies, primarily directed at young people, in an attempt to reestablish the notorious “Track Two” at a much higher level. 

The objective of ideological subversion continues to be to break the unity of the people, to sow doubt, to modify the standards of conduct of our ideology, to promote individuality and hyper-criticism toward the work of the Revolution. For that reason, strengthening unity around the Party is still vital in the present and in the future. 

It is evident that these crucial tasks must be headed by our cadres, whose training and development were profoundly discussed in the 5th Plenum of the National Committee in February 2007. At that point, given the importance that such an important theme embodies for the future, the UJC reformulated the strategy to be followed in the recruitment, preparation, training and promotion of the reserve of professional cadres, based on the indispensable requisite that being a professional leader in our organization means having a minimum of five years’ work experience in production, educational or services sectors. 

Since 2008, when that decision came into force, a total of 1,281 comrades have been promoted.

As part of the agreements adopted in that plenum, professional cadres without a labor history and student leaders who had completed their student life, and who, on account of their merits and conditions, had been identified as a reserve of future cadres of the Revolution, were linked to a workplace in line with the subject in which they graduated. To date, we have linked 171 cadres and 486 university graduates: 128 in 2007; 248 in 2008; and 281 in 2009. 

This linking process has not been exempt from deficiencies, fundamentally related to the selection of comrades, the lack of a systematic method of attention, above all in an individual context, in such a way that we can objectively assess results being achieved in the training and preparation of the members of our reserve during their labor period. We need to work rigorously to avoid any distortion of the principles and objectives being pursued through the implementation of this policy.  

Our leaders at all levels need a larger arsenal of arguments, and need to improve and extend working methods, to develop capacities for transforming problems that need to be confronted, to assume the role of real conductors and leaders of the combat that the Revolution is waging at the present time. They must act with the authority that emanates from personal example, with modesty and without sterile leadership, in order to gain the prestige of the leadership structures wherever they are acting on the basis of a demonstrated fidelity to the Revolution and a constant coherence between what is said and what is done. 

On the other hand, phenomena such as unfilled posts, instability in rosters, a deficient implementation of the sanctions policy, flaws in the preparation of our cadres for their future work within the Party or wherever the country needs them, processes of growth that sometimes obviate quality and other times do not reach spaces where youth leadership is evident, require coherent and rapid action. 

It is essential to improve planning and systems of work as fundamental instruments; although significant steps have been taken on this issue we are still experiencing difficulties that have repercussions in terms of fulfilling the objectives and tasks proposed. 

The grassroots committees have to be a space of discussion par excellence, in such a way that we can transform problems, make decisions, clarify concepts and form a militant attitude in young people via the fulfillment of tasks. They constitute a school in which the exercise of criticism and self-criticism, linked to the combativeness and exemplariness of their members should be a constant. Dialogue has to be open and frank, in which arguments are expounded and solutions proposed. 

Young communists must be examples in their daily conduct and thus it is our role to guarantee Party education of all those who join the UJC. 

The accumulation of problems and diversions resulting from a lack of direction and profound analysis often makes it so that the definitive solution to errors committed is the adoption of measures implying the member’s separation from the organization. In the context of this problem, we need a more efficient application of internal sanctions as an instrument for the education of our membership, and to achieve a better correspondence between the indisciplines committed and analyses that are undertaken at the center of every base organization. 

It is not just about improving these important aspects and functioning inward; we urgently need to occupy every space in which the presence of revolutionaries is needed. Mobilization and the participation of young people in various meeting convened, the attitude assumed, attendance at political, cultural and productive activities, social behavior and a readiness to train for defense tasks cannot remain mere slogans. 

We have to forge in all Cubans of our and future generations an elevated consciousness of being producers, with a deep respect for the traditions of struggle and labor feats of the working class, a constant effort toward the improvement and development of the means of production and for increased productivity, a systematic practice of savings and a strict observance of completing the working day and having labor discipline. 

In the first place, the priority is to dignify and recognize work as an irreplaceable source of wealth and the only way of advancing; playing a genuine leading role in the incorporation of young people in food production, replacing imports and increasing our exports, in the conviction that we have to live off of what we are capable of producing through our own efforts. 

Throughout these years, we have responded to many calls and we will continue to do so; our youth responded to the heavy losses brought about by the hurricanes of 2008. Effective mobilizations closely linked to the principle of rationality, involved thousands of young workers in the coffee, tobacco and sugar harvests, in food production and reforestation, as well as in construction tasks and in support of the reestablishing the school year. 

The period that we are assessing also served to reaffirm the political process for the incorporation of our youth into the Women’s Voluntary Military Service, a result of reflections made by General of the Army Raúl Castro Ruz in the debates of the 8th Congress defense commission. 

In the last five years, more than 2,600 women have joined this honorable mission within FAR and MININT units. 

Compañeras and compañeros, on July 23, 2007, in his response to the message from the communist youth, our beloved Fidel confirmed his certainty that we will be constantly prepared to maintain our guard. He stated and I quote: “If the youth fail, everything will fail. It is my most profound conviction that Cuban youth will fight to prevent that, I believe in you all.” End of quote. 

Thousands of valuable combatants have emerged from our youth movement who, just like our five heroes, reflect the integrity of a generation that will never hand over its flags.  

As compañero Raúl, president of the Councils of State and Ministers, has noted, and I quote, “Some people are saying that the U.S. circles of power are waiting for the disappearance of the historic generation of the Revolution, a shady bet on the so-called biological factor or, in other words, on the death of Fidel and all of us.” 

“Those thinking along those lines are condemned to failure because the generations of revolutionary patriots who will succeed us, in the first place our magnificent youth, will never be ideologically disarmed.” End of quote. 

These times demand more fidelity, dedication to work and study, strength and revolutionary awareness; only in this way will we be prepared to resolutely face up to the aggressions of imperialism and assume the enormous responsibility of continuing to develop the revolutionary process.

As the vanguard of Cuban youth, we will defend dignity and freedom, convinced that socialism is the only perspective for development, social justice and democracy in an independent and sovereign homeland. 

We assume the commitment of acting, of dignifying those who are working for the social good, for those who produce and contribute, from the place that befalls them, without ceding to imperial threats and those of mercenaries who play its game. 

It is our responsibility to employ in the work of the organization all ways and methods of enabling every young revolutionary to make his or hers the principle of “Here, nobody surrenders!” and the conviction that as long as there is one person, one weapon, one just idea, no cause will be lost and there will be resistance and victory with the conviction that each one of us, in conditions of isolation or incommunicado in war, will be his or her own commander in chief and will continue fighting until the final consequences. As long as one Cuban remains fighting the Revolution cannot be defeated. 

We are convened to that battle. Let us demonstrate, once again, how it has invariably been proven in history of Cuba, that “we can do it.” As Cuban youth we will not fail.

Translated by Granma International

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