Sir Garfield Todd

ZIMSEC O Level History Notes: The Struggle for Independence in Colonial Zimbabwe 1900-1980:The African National Congress

  • Modern nationalism as characterized by the emergency of focused and determined political leaders
  • The ANC was reborn during the times of Todd’s government on 12 September 1957
  • The ANC was initially formed in 1934 by Aaron Jacha but had operated only in Matebeleland
  • The new ANC was more of a national movement than a regional one
  • A City Youth League was formed by George Nyandoro, James Chikerema, Dunduza Chisiza and Edison Sithole
  • It was a militant movement and organized successful municipal bus boycotts which deteriorated into riots when busfares were hicked
  • The ANC leaders were Joshua Nkomo (President), James Chikerema (Vice President), George Nyandoro (General Secretary) with J Z Moyo, J W Musika and committee members
  • Joshua Nkomo worked for the Railways as a social worker and became active in politics in 1947
  • The ANC had clear policies on what they wanted to achieve
  • They aimed at getting rid of the Land Apportionment and Land Husbandry Act
  • They wanted to get rid of the Natives Affairs Department and their Native Commissioners
  • They also hated the federation and joined groups from other federal states in the fight against it
  • It was not clear however on self-rule and they ended up fighting against discrimination
  • The ANC used different methods to try and put across their grievances, such as, negotiations, taking matters to court as they defended the rights of native farmers when they lost their cattle or land under the Land Husbandry Act
  • They also organized wide spread urban rallies which caused and school children’s marches against discrimination in schools, for example, the Gwelo march in demand of Standard IV places (11-12 years)
  • These demonstration scared the Whitehead government which declared a national state of emergency in 1959
  • The ANC was banned and 500 of its leaders were arrested
  • More repressive laws were introduced by the government to suppress the conflicts

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