Kaguvi and Nehanda Heroes of the First Chimurenga

ZIMSEC O Level History Notes: The First Chimurenga: The Role of Religion in the Ndebele – Shona uprisings (1896-7)

  • It is believed that the BSAC exaggerated the role played by religious leaders
  • They blamed them for using supernatural methods
  • The religious leaders worked together with local political leaders
  • They gave religious approval to the start of the uprisings
  • They told their people that Mwari wanted them to kill whites
  • They also offered psychological and emotional support to the warriors
  • This gave courage and morale and confidence to African warriors as they believed in Mwari
  • The mediums linked the Ndebele and Shona uprising ensuring unity among freedom fighters
  • They helped in coordinating and organizing the Chimurenga as they had powers that extended across paramount borders
  • They were involved in directing attacks against the whites, for example, Nehanda ordered the capturing and killing of Native Commissioner for Mazowe, Pollard

To access more topics go to the History Notes page.