Latin American Network Information Center - LANIC

Castro Addresses Sixth Congress Contingent

FL152308 Havana Tele-Rebelde Network in Spanish 1427 GMT 12 Feb 88

[Speech by Commander in Chief Fidel Castro at ceremony organizing the
Sixth Congress Contingent at Havana's Miguel Henriquez Hospital on 11

[Text]  [Applause]  These are times of few words and many deeds.  I believe
this day, when we officially organize and award the banner to the Sixth
Congress Contingent, is a significant day for our capital and our workers,
especially our construction workers.  When one arrives here...[Castro
pauses; sound of train whistle heard]  Let's wait until the train goes by.
It would seem that the train is also saluting the contingent.  [laughter,
light applause]   It's a good thing that it's a loud whistle.  Think of a
train cutting across town.

We are witnessing a serious project and a collective... [Castro pauses and
laughs; sound of train whistle again; laughter] a collective able to work
seriously although retaining its ability to laugh.

We are witnessing something new here.  First of all, this is a project that
is being done at full speed.  It is a project that is meeting an important
public need.  Around 300,000 or 400,000 people will benefit from this
hospital.  [applause]

The country is really proud to see how the members of the minibrigades, the
contingents are working.  For instance, the Julio Diaz contingent, which
was the first one, and the Bias Roca contingent.  We got the idea from a
contingent of workers who spontaneously started to work many extra hours.
Consider the Blas Roca contingent.  We are proud to have workers such as
these, to be able to tell any visitor about them, show him what they are
doing, how they work, how they have a developed awareness, how they are
moving forward.  That is why we are so happy to be able to create a
contingent of this magnitude, with selected personnel that will work
similar to the Blas Roca contingent.

I am often in touch with the Blas Roca comrades.  They now have two
brigades and are planning a third.  The second brigade is building a
highway in the Expo-Cuba area.  They are now going to organize a brigade
for bridges and overpasses.  We have to build a lot of bridges and
overpasses here in the city for these highways.  They are going to have
three brigades.  These brigades are smaller than yours.  The comrades tell
me they are going to have as many as 1,300 or 1,380 members.  We'll have to
see if they really need that many workers.  You never know how much men can
do when they work earnestly, with discipline, constancy, and efficiency.

I can see that this project is really advanced.  Blocks one, two, and three
are well advanced.  I see there has been good planning, strategy, and
tactics, but I would like to remind you, Comrades, that you are facing the
most serious challenge.  This is the country's most difficult project this
year.  There are bigger projects, enormous projects--the CEN
[electronuclear power plant], the oil refinery, the stone mill under
construction in Santa Clara, the projects in Santiago, Moa, and many other
places.  There is also the huge minibrigade program in the capital.
However, the most difficult project is this one, because of its complexity,
because of the quality it requires, because it is going to be completed in
a few months.

You should know this.  You are going to be defending the prestige of the
country's construction workers, of the [Construction] Ministry, of all the
country's workers.  You are going to be demonstrating what the revolution
can do with a truly revolutionary, enthusiastic, courageous, and heroic
proletariat.  You will never forget for a single minute how valuable this
project is, the lives that this project will save.  Many years from now you
will remember those who built this project with gratitude.  This will
include all those who come here to relieve their suffering, their pain;
this will include their relatives and all those who come to this
extraordinary hospital, which will go from being the worst hospital, in a
manner of speaking, to being one of the best in Havana.  [applause]

We hope you will be proud to belong to this contingent.  We hope the spirit
of attention to man will prevail as the key factor--the moral factor.  We
hope that problems will be solved, that you will be well fed, that you will
be among the best fed in the country.  We hope you will also take breaks.
We have asked that the capacity of the contingent's camp be expanded as
much as possible, so if a worker is from La Lisa and wants to stay in the
camp for a couple of days, he may do so.

I hope this Sixth Congress Contingent earns a great deal of prestige, of
glory.  I hope it will be able to accomplish this difficult task.  I hope
you are the vanguard of construction workers, the banner contingent of
construction workers.  I hope we may meet again here.  I don't know where,
but this might be a good place right here.  I hope there will be room
here in this area so we may meet again with you and inaugurate this

We are certain, absolutely certain you will be capable of successfully
completing this task.  For my part, I will continue to follow the progress
of the project closely.  I have been given an identification card.  I don't
deserve it but I will at least try to attend to your problems and cooperate
with you in achieving this noble, highly humane, and glorious task.

Fatherland or death, we shall win!  [Crowed responds "We shall win!"]