A century of communist struggle celebrated with 100 actions across the country – ZAP


Mário Cruz / Lusa

The secretary general of the PCP, Jerónimo de Sousa

The oldest political party celebrates, this Saturday, 100 years of existence. PCP will celebrate the anniversary with 100 shares across the country.

This Saturday, the PCP marks its 100th anniversary with 100 actions, in a few dozen other places, and a parade is scheduled in Lisbon, in which Jerónimo de Sousa, secretary general of the communists, will participate.

100 years, 100 actions”,“ Some simpler, others more thematic ”, as defined by Jerónimo, are the initiatives with which the party replaced the centennial rally in Campo Pequeno, in Lisbon, announced a year ago and which was canceled due to the pandemic of covid- 19.

Campo Pequeno, in Lisbon, is a symbolic place for the party, given that it was there that the first large party of the PCP took place after the 25th of April, with Álvaro Cunhal (1913-2005), the historical leader of the Portuguese communists .

Now, spread across the country, there will be a “vast set of initiatives, centered on the problems of the country, workers and people ”, under the motto of“ Freedom, Democracy, Socialism ”, in defense of“ rights, the improvement of living conditions and social progress, against exploitation and impoverishment ” .

In Lisbon, and with a limited number of participants at 100 – one for each year of the party’s life – there is a parade through various locations in the capital associated with a century of the party’s life.

One group of 100 militants, from JCP and PCP, begins the parade at Rua do Arsenal, where the worker who was secretary-general of the Portuguese communists Bento Gonçalves, who died in Tarrafal, works, goes to Rua da Madalena, where, at number 225 – 1st, the party was created, on March 6, 1921, at the headquarters of the Association of Office Employees.

The parade then continues to Rua António Maria Cardoso, where the headquarters of the political police were, who arrested, tortured and killed PCP militants, passes through Largo do Carmo, where, on April 25, 1974, Marcelo Caetano surrendered to Armed Forces Movement (MFA), which overthrew the 48-year-old dictatorship, the oldest in Europe.

At Rossio, decorated with dozens of posts with the party’s red flag, just like what will happen in Porto and other cities, there will be songs and speeches, the last of which will be by Jerónimo de Sousa.

The centennial celebrations will continue until 2022, and in February the PCP launched the 300-page book “100 years of struggle at the service of the people and the country for Democracy and Socialism”, which illustrates, in more than 900 photographs and images, striking moments in the history of the communists, from strikes in the 1900s to the “carnation revolution”.

Founded on March 6, 1921, in Lisbon, the Portuguese Communist Party (PCP) is the oldest political party, it was 47 years in hiding during the Estado Novo and was central in the resistance to the dictatorship.

Its general secretary was José Carlos Rates (1923-1925), Bento Gonçalves (1929-1942), Álvaro Cunhal (1961-1992), Carlos Carvalhas (1992-2004) and is currently led by Jerónimo de Sousa, since 2004.

Historical figures excluded from the book 100 years of struggle

According to Expresso, some of the personalities that were part of the PCP’s history are absent from the book “100 Anos de Luta”. It is the case of Julio Fogaça, who preceded Álvaro Cunhal in the leadership and who was removed for being homosexual, and Pavel (Francisco Paula Oliveira) who replaced the first leader Bento Gonçalves.

Carlos Costa, a resistant anti-fascist who was a member of the central committee and responsible for the Control Committee of the PCP’s political commission, is only mentioned in a brief passage as “leader of the Youth MUD”. The weekly writes that Costa was removed from the board in 2012.

Domingos Lopes, Barros de Moura or Edgar Correia, belonging to the “renovators” wing, are also excluded from the work, as well as Carlos de Brito, who came to lead the parliamentary bench and was expelled from the PCP in 2002.

Zita Seabra, who led the UEC and was banned from the party and accused of ‘bourgeois deviations’, is also not mentioned.