Negotiated transfer

Open letter to the executive committee of the Socialist Alliance

Dear comrades, We are current or former executive members or officers of the Socialist Alliance. We recognise that since the launch of Respect, the Socialist Workers Party and a majority of the executive see no further purpose in the SA. However, we believe it important to recognise that the Socialist Alliance existed prior to the involvement of the SWP and that it belongs to its members and not to any one particular organisation. We also recognise that there is a significant minority of SA members who would wish to continue with the SA project, albeit on a smaller scale, and that there may be others who wish to rejoin. We therefore believe that if the current SA leadership and its supporters wish to transfer their allegiance to Respect, it is reasonable to expect that they do this in a way that allows those who wish to continue the SA project to do so. We therefore call upon the SA executive to facilitate a negotiated transfer of the SA to a new executive comprising of representatives of those members who wish to continue. Any such proposal should be put before the SA conference for its agreement. We believe that such a process is in the interests of the socialist movement as a whole. Nothing can damage the reputation of socialists in the eyes of the working class than the appearance that we are unable to conduct our affairs democratically and in a sensible way without bitterness and recriminations. The end of the Socialist Alliance, or equally the pretence of continued existence in its present inactive form, can only cause damage to our movement. We therefore call upon the SA executive to begin discussions and negotiations with members who wish to continue building the SA, with a view to reaching an agreement about the future of the SA to be put before the forthcoming SA conference. Yours in comradeship, Dave Church, Steve Godward, Jim Jepps, Lesley Mahmood, Margaret Manning, Pete McLaren, John Nicholson, Declan O'Neill, Martin Thomas