A young Joshua Nkomo (seated).

ZIMSEC O Level History Notes:The Struggle for Independence in Colonial Zimbabwe 1900-1980: Modern Nationalism: Struggle for One Man One Vote (1950-65)

  • The new nationalism of the 1950 challenged white dominance and advocated for equality in all spheres of lives
  • It also demanded Universal Suffrage that is One Man One Vote
  • One of the main reasons for such a shift of African nationalism could be that those who participated in WW II had experienced the equality phenomenon and wanted it to implemented in Zimbabwe
  • Although the contribution of WWII soldiers is debatable, they are argued to have had a hand in the Second Chimurenga
  • During this period many African intellectuals rose and began to question the status quo
  • The nationalists demanded equal representation in Parliament
  • The implementation of the despised Land Husbandry Act, the Federation and the continued racial discrimination led to the Second Chimurenga
  • The protest during this era were more militant and many violent protests took place
  • The government declared a state of emergency and enacted many harsh and brutal laws
  • They included:
    1. 1959 Preventive Detention Act
    2. 1960 the Law and Order Maintenance Act
    3. 1959 the Unlawful Organizations Act
  • The ANC was banned by the colonial government in 1959
  • The colonial government started negotiations for a new constitution in 1961
  • Voters were divided in A and B rolls
  • These negotiation were an indication that the settlers were not ready to give up their power and Africans were divided into two groups, that is, moderates under Joshua Nkomo and radicals led by the younger generation

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