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Honouring Mandela's struggle for freedom across Africa, he said: "Madiba showed us the way whether you are white, black, yellow or brown, you are all God's children."
Source: Zambian Statesman Kaunda Brings Mandela Funeral To Close - World News
The following article on Nelson Mandela by our beloved Dr. Kenneth Kaunda published under KK's Diary in the Post Newspaper on November 13 2005:-
By Dr Kenneth Kaunda: Sunday November 13, 2005
THE name Nelson Mandela is considered a symbol of the struggle against apartheid in South Africa. Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela’s life is linked to the story of the ANC. Mandela is linked to the history of southern Africa, Africa, and the world. In turn, events in the region and other parts of the world have affected Nelson Mandela’s life.
Nelson Mandela and Oliver Reginald Tambo were for a long time the closest of friends in the struggle.
While Oliver Tambo, also knows as “OR,‿ was born in 1917, Nelson Mandela was born in July 1918. They were quite close in ideals. Together, they had been expelled from Fort Hare University for student protest. Together, they were partners in a law firm.
In the early 1940s, they had been involved in setting up the Youth League of the ANC. With the 1948 official coming into force of the National Party’s government system of the official racism of “apartheid,‿ these were difficult times. The apartheid regime stood for something vicious and disastrous. They would use force to maintain the evil system.
Nelson Mandela and “OR‿ worked closely with the great ANC president Chief Albert Luthuli. Together with Walter Sisulu and committed men and women of South Africa, Nelson Mandela and Oliver Tambo intensified the struggle against apartheid. Theirs was a struggle that had continued over hundreds of years. For Africa, just as apartheid produced great events all over southern Africa, the struggle produced great leaders.
These are leaders by world standards.
We had heard about Nelson Mandela, Oliver Tambo, and their efforts in South Africa. The early 1960s were a busy and eventful period for Africa. Most of Africa was in intensive struggle for freedom and preparing for independence from colonial rulers. At Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, I met Nelson Mandela. It should have been in December 1961. Addis Ababa was establishing itself as a centre for support to Africa’s freedom fighters.
Preparations were being made for the formation of the Organisation of African Unity, OAU.
Nelson Mandela was around Addis Ababa with Oliver Tambo. While Nelson had left South Africa for the conference unofficially, Oliver was in Ghana, living in exile. Nelson Mandela was young and handsome looking. On our first personal meeting, I could see that Nelson Mandela was a committed fighter for freedom. You could see the clear determination in him.
At the same time, he gave respect to other people. He respected fellow freedom fighters from other countries. From the beginning, Nelson Mandela and I got on very well.
Nelson asked me for our party UNIP to assist ANC. We were not in government then. We were Zambia’s government in waiting. Nelson Mandela knew that we, as UNIP, had made commitment to support neighbouring freedom fighters at the time we would become independent. Remember that the African freedom parties had a sense of common affinity.
We had African National Congress in various countries.
We had ANC of Northern Rhodesia, ANC of Southern Rhodesia, and the Congress Party in Malawi. We sang common anthems based on the great Nkosi Sikelelie Africa. We were thus supportive of each other’s struggles. We even collaborated as networks.
In Addis Ababa, at the time I met Nelson Mandela, we were still willing to support our brothers and sisters in neighbouring countries. It was a common struggle.
But when Nelson Mandela asked for assistance, we were then not in a position to give material and financial support to the ANC. I asked Nelson Mandela to speak with Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe, the UNIP treasurer.
In Addis Ababa, Nelson Mandela and Oliver Tambo did a lot to sensitise Africa’s leaders on the situation in South Africa. He explained the use of force by the ruling regime. This was just a year after the brutal events of Sharpeville, where non-violent black protestors were gunned down. Due to the regime’s violence, ANC was changing approach. The militant wing Umkhonto we Swize was formed. In Addis Ababa, through Nelson and Oliver, many people understood more the situation of South Africa.
After Addis Ababa, Nelson Mandela toured other African countries, sharing the message of the struggle and seeking support. He also underwent military training and preparations that would help him in organising Umkhoto we Sizwe. Later, he went back to South Africa.
Oliver Tambo stayed outside as he was living in exile, having in 1960 been banned by the South African regime. Oliver Tambo was concentrating on establishing, in exile, ANC as an effective and internationally supported movement.
When Nelson Mandela went back and sneaked into South Africa, he was arrested. He was given a five-year sentence for leaving South Africa without a permit.
Together with others, Nelson Mandela was involved in the Rivonia trial. Being principled, he used the court to explain the ANC ideals, ideals dealing with human dignity for all people. He explained how the ANC’s non-violence struggle against apartheid and injustice was met with violence and force by the apartheid regime. ANC would use force but not hurt innocent people.
“I have fought against white domination,‿ Nelson told the court, “and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities.‿
“It is an ideal,‿ Nelson Mandela proclaimed, “which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.‿
Nelson Mandela’s words summarised the struggle against racism and injustice in Africa. It summarises the ANC position and the path it took over the years. That path is what we in Zambia, before and after our independence in 1964, greatly supported.
At Rivonia, Nelson Mandela and his comrades were sentenced to life imprisonment. That took Nelson to harsh places like Robben Island. Meanwhile, Oliver Tambo, in exile, continued to build the ANC machinery.
The ANC used Nelson Mandela’s imprisonment as a rallying point for the struggle against apartheid.
Nelson Mandela became, worldwide, a symbol of the struggle.
In Addis Ababa, I could not know that Nelson Mandela would be in prison, in fact be in there for a very long time. I must reveal to you, my dear reader and friend, that when Nelson Mandela and comrades were in prison, my fear was that the regime might terminate them. I really feared for their lives. The regime used force and was ruthless. This concern and anxiety in me went on for decades. I did not know when the apartheid rulers would stop fearing the influence of Nelson Mandela and his comrades. They could harm him as an easier way, for them, of reducing that influence and the inevitable change required in South Africa.
I knew the regime was physically vicious. In 1957, on the way to Ghana’s independence, I had to pass through Johannesburg airport. I found many police dogs at that airport. Each way I looked, I saw a big dog. I had nothing to hide as I passed through the airport. I did not carry a thing like a revolver that I needed to hide. In fact, I have never touched a revolver. But Johannesburg airport was unfriendly and very hostile.
There was a clear atmosphere of a vicious police state. So I feared for the lives of Nelson Mandela and our comrades. In fact, this concern was proved by the death in prison of young Steve Biko and other freedom fighters.
With Nelson Mandela a focal point, we supported the ANC and the struggle of South Africa’s people. Zambia was then surrounded by other countries under colonial or racist rule. Angola and Mozambique were under the Portuguese. British-ruled Southern Rhodesia, later “Zimbabwe‿, had been taken over by a group of European settlers under Ian Douglas Smith. This had been in November 1965 through the Unilateral Declaration of Independence, UDI. Also on our borders was Namibia, then under the rule of apartheid South Africa.
The struggles of the various groups were related.
Often, the forces ruling the regimes worked together to suppress and kill people fighting for freedom. We were faced by a common oppression that faced people, in various countries, fighting for a common struggle for justice.
With our independence in Zambia, ANC and other liberation movements moved from Tanzania, where my brother Julius Nyerere and the people of Tanzania hosted them, to Lusaka. In Zambia, we took upon ourselves, as a principle, to support ANC and freedom movement in southern Africa. It was not motivated by any profit for ourselves. We believed, like Nelson Mandela, in a society where “all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities.‿
Our struggle was not against white people. It was against practices and systems of racism. We believed in the Commandments of loving God with all ones strength, and loving your neighbour as we love ourselves. In Oliver Tambo and Nelson Mandela, we also found people who did not believe in hatred but love for fellow human beings of whatever colour. We had a common cause.
Because of this principle based on love, we had,worldwide support. We had support from international organisations, governments, civil society organisations, churches, and individuals in various parts of the world. We used various ways to support the ANC. We canvassed, as a team of three governments called the Mulungushi Club and composed of Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia, for international action against apartheid. The Mulungushi Club later, as more countries became independent, became the Frontline States.
We used the OAU, Commonwealth Group of Nations, the Non-Aligned Movement, all networks I chaired at some time, to internationalise the fight against racism and apartheid. We worked closely with the United Nations.
There were also other solidarity organisations we worked with. Through international action, various sanctions were sought and imposed on South Africa and the racist regimes of southern Africa. We called for economic, social, cultural, and sports sanctions against South Africa. Our interest was to use diplomacy to avoid bloodshed.
I was also at times forced, in order to move forward, to meet rulers of the racist and apartheid regimes. I believed in dialogue. I believed we could avoid a big conflagration threatening southern Africa because of racism. Even now, I believe in non-violence as the ideal method of action.
Because we believed, like with other neighbouring liberation movements, in South Africa’s freedom fight, we had to support ANC in effective ways. I regarded the leaders of the movements as people denied leadership of states. I treated them as heads of states. Most of the leaders of freedom movements thus lived or were kept where I lived, at State House.
Because of the various forces at play, I knew that South Africa would take longer to be free. So we got ANC president Oliver Tambo to have his own house within the State House presidents. There, comrades like Thabo Mbeki would visit him. Diplomats from various parts of the world would visit him at State House. We considered Lusaka a home for Oliver Tambo and ANC. From Lusaka, we continued to support the advance of ANC towards the liberation of South Africa.
Following the death of Chief Albert Luthuli in 1967, Oliver Tambo had became ANC president. The role involved a lot of organisation and campaigning. ANC had its base in Lusaka. But Oliver Tambo had to sell the ANC ideals all over the world. There was support coming in from all over the world. People all over the world began to know about Nelson Mandela and the struggle in South Africa.
In all this, I never imposed myself on Oliver Tambo and the ANC. They understood their situation better.
They made their plans and asked us to support them where we could. We were just partners supporting our brothers and sisters in a common, just struggle. We did not control the liberation movements. At the same time, Zambia’s people greatly supported the liberation struggle. We would not have successfully continued support for ANC and our colleagues if the people of Zambia were not in support.
For many people, Nelson Mandela was constantly in mind. People in fields like the arts, through music and drama, did a lot on the situation of Nelson Mandela and South Africa. People in sports acted against apartheid. People all over the world protested against products and trade linked to South Africa. Of course, there were some people, governments, and organisations that supported apartheid. They ignored the work and ideals of Nelson Mandela.
For many people, Nelson Mandela was a great symbol of the suppression done against Africa’s people. He was a symbol of hope. If Nelson Mandela and colleagues would be released, it would be a symbol of Africa and the world’s triumph over racism and artificial division.
To this ideal, we supported ANC in the release of Nelson Mandela. We believed South Africa could change and be known as a great country for all people. I will share with you my role, challenges, and experience in the release of Nelson Mandela.
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More from source - This is a deep, collective loss for Africa - Sunday Independent | IOL.co.za
Source: Zambia's Kaunda Pays Tribute To Nelson Mandela - World News
The day KK was deservedly honoured with an honorary Doctorate Degree in Peace and Conflict Studies at the Copperbelt University in April this year. It was an honour to be his hostess. Leading KK to the Graduation Square for the Special Graduation Ceremony held on CBU grounds. May God bless you our father and enjoy many more happy returns.
Wednesday, 14 November, 2012
Born at Lubwa Mission Station in 1924 as one of eight children, his father, Reverend David Kaunda of the Church of Scotland endowed in him the gift of love not only for his close family members but all races.
His parents also taught him to read at an early age such that by the time he started school at Munali in Lusaka, young Kaunda was ahead of his peers.
After Munali where he got a teaching certificate, young Kaunda took up a teaching post at Chinsali Mission when winds of change driven by the late Dr Banda and another Zambian nationalist leader Harry Nkumbula were rising against the Federation of Southern Africa.
At 25, Kaunda took up the campaign holding solo guitar sessions across Zambia (then Northern Rhodesia) singing freedom songs and created branches for the African National Congress.
His efforts earned him the secretary general’s position and a prison booking in Lusaka.
While in prison, Kaunda formulated humanism, a concept that expresses faith in the common men and women as well as a belief in non-violence.
Looking back today, this concept made him feel the pain others under the yoke of oppression felt.
He then left ANC to form the Zambian African National Congress that was driven underground by the British who arrested and brought him to Salisbury (Harare) Prison.
When he left Salisbury Prison, he founded the United National Independent Party (UNIP) that joined hands with Dr Banda’s Congress Party to fight the federation.
In 1962, he became a legislative Council of Northern Rhodesia as a Minister of Local Government and Social Welfare in a UNIP/ ANC coalition government. He assumed the presidency of the Republic of Zambia in 1964.
Of course, it’s a fact that he lost the 1991 election to Chiluba because the Zambian economy was bartered and the nation was wallowing in poverty. Unlike Mobutu Sese Seko of Zaire and many other African leaders who drive their economies into the ground because of greed and insensitivity, Kaunda was a victim of many things.
But before looking into the machinisations formulated to effect his downfall, it would help a lot to list down what he did for Zambia.
When he took over, enrolment in schools and colleges rose from 3million to 7million and infrastructure such as roads, clinics and colleges were built.
He introduced the National Development Plans from 1964 to 1970 under which his reconstruction plans were carried out.
But just like any other African nation, Zambia was a welfare nation. This state of affairs is usually a result of trying to cater for previously marginalised people. So in the early days of independence, Zambians enjoyed state subsidies on maize meal and other products. This, however, backfired when the copper prices fell such that by 1986, the economy could not hold.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) had advised Zambia to devalue the kwacha, freeze wages and control public expenditure. The ripple effect of this was price hikes and massive shortages of commodities. By 1987, it was clear that Zambia was drowning and Dr Kaunda cut ties with both IMF and World Bank.
What many people seem to forget is what caused the decline in Zambia’s economy. Most attribute it to Kaunda’s mismanagement yet there were various factors.
To begin with, when Ian Smith declared the Unilateral Declaration of Independence in 1965, he cut off the shortest route for the transportation of copper to South Africa from Zambia because ZAPU and ZANU, organisations fighting Smith were sheltered by Kaunda. This was costly for the country.
With no help from the international community, Kaunda had to team up with Julius Nyerere and the Chinese in constructing the 1860 km Tanzania Zambia Railway (Tazara). A 1710km pipeline, the Tanzania, Zambia and Malawi (Tazama) that stretched from Dar es Salaam to Kapiri Mposhi was built.
More hydro electricity stations were built at the Kafue Gorge and Kariba’s North Bank while industries were established to withstand the liberation struggle with farming systems improved to boost local food production.
In a 2001 report titled Zambia Against Apartheid compiled by and the Justice Centre for Theological Reflection (JCTR) estimates the cost of southern Africa’s war on Zambia at US$19billion. Of this figure, US$5,34billion was incurred fighting apartheid alone. The report notes that 2010 figures ‘should be higher’.
“Support for liberation of Zimbabwe and others contributed to Zambia going into debt and through harsh IMF and World Bank debt conditions, staying in debt.
“And some forces that for gain supported racist regimes have come through other windows and are getting facilities and resources built by Zambia during the liberation.
“In April 1994, when apartheid South Africa changed and Nelson Mandela became president, Africa's liberation sights were reached. But for Zambia, there were no organised international or local processes of healing from Southern Africa's war of liberation,” the report further says.
Although the fight against racism was a task for human dignity, the reports says, there has been no international material and economic support to help Zambia's rehabilitation. Thus various imbalances continue in society.
Apart from the economic effects the wars caused on Zambia, the report says Zambia had to increase spending on defence and security because of ‘bombings by racist regimes led to thousands of deaths of Zambians and freedom fighters. Many were maimed’.
Despite all these sacrifices, Dr Kaunda’s legacy is not fully recognised and it’s saddening that when he was admitted in a Namibian hospital, the leaders he helped ascend to power were gathering in Windhoek discussing the future of liberation war movements.
They also gathered in Luanda, Angola for the Southern African Development Community (Sadc)’s chairmanship handover for an organisation he was the first chairman.
If we go back again to the Mandela/ Kaunda parallel, one would ask: What is the difference between the two? Why has not the west been good to Dr Kaunda for bringing freedom to the region just like they are good to Mandela? Who is a better statesman – one who fights for others’ freedom and one who does not condemn democracy’s undemocratic ways?
If it’s for peace, during his entire rule, Dr Kaunda never called for violence. It was his paramount desire to inculcate peace hence the peace that prevails among tribes in Zambia today.
If it’s fighting for HIV/ Aids, Dr Kaunda has done much for this cause through his Kenneth Kaunda Children of Africa Foundation.
Like Mandela, Dr Kaunda is respected in his country where he lives like an ordinary citizen.
While the west can be justified in dumping Dr Kaunda in the dustbin of history, what about the region he helped free?
It appears as if time and history are drowning Dr Kaunda’s voice calling for togetherness and understanding among all the peoples of the region.
With time, we won’t hear his signature tune: Tiyende Pamodzi Ndi Mutima Umo!
Wednesday, 14 November, 2012
He is now known as the weeping president and the last time he addressed the Southern African Development Community (Sadc) in Windhoek last year, Dr Kenneth Kaunda, former Zambian president wept as he sang his signature tune, Tiyende Pamodzi Ndi Mutima Umo (Let us Walk Together with One Heart).
Seeing Dr Kaunda shed tears, it’s unimaginable that this is the man who liberated southern Africa and was instrumental in pushing for the release of former South African President Nelson Mandela.
It’s so distant to think that the role Dr Kenneth Kaunda played can be likened to that played by Che Guevara.
But today, he has been relegated to the fringes of history such that he does not make much news as Nelson Mandela does.
Last month, Dr Kaunda was admitted in a Windhoek hospital for what was termed a ‘routine check’ and that event did not send headlines across the world screaming as did Mandela’s hospitalisation for another ‘routine check’ a few months ago.
There are 99% chances that if one asks the youth who Dr Kenneth Kaunda is, they would not know but just mention the name Nelson Mandela and they will tell you.
This is so because Dr Kaunda fought to liberate the region by accommodating revolutionary movements in his country when Zambia attained independence in 1964.
While democracy is key word today, Dr Kaunda’s role as a liberator and proponent of democracy has never and will never be recognised because he helped in taking over power from those favoured by the west.
If the Kaunda-Mandela parallel is to be drawn further, one would conclude that the West loves Mandela today not so much because he has done anything for Africa in general or South Africa in particular but because he turned the other cheek and shook the bloodied hands of the people who murdered his own children.
One would also conclude that the west packaged Mandela for the world in exactly the same way they package products such as cigarettes, coke cola, and alcohol as well as clothing brands for consumption.
It is for this reason that no other African statesmen who reached out their hand to help others survive the onslaught of the west will ever be accorded the same respect and marketing Mandela receives.
All what we have seen and got are street names after Dr Kaunda with a municipality in South Africa in the North West Province changing its name form Southern District Municipality to Dr Kenneth Kaunda Municipality for the man’s ‘invaluable contribution to the freedom struggle in Africa; outstanding leadership; peace and progress initiatives in Africa’.
So today Dr Kaunda who sacrificed everything – his political career, his country’s economy, his life as a father and husband – for the betterment of the region lives the life of an ordinary man.
Unlike other African leaders – his successor the late Frederick Chiluba for example – who leave the State House burdened with accusations of corruption and looting of the economy, Dr Kaunda was removed with his hands clean. Most of the ministers who served in his government do not have much to show for the time they spent in government.
He is, most probably, one of very few African leaders who stayed on in their countries when they were removed from power and continue to live like normal citizens without anyone booing them.
Likewise, Dr Kaunda’s contribution to the independence of Angola, Mozambique, South Africa, Zimbabwe and Namibia has been forgotten. Nobody cares that Dr Kaunda’s benevolence towards his neighbours scarred the country’s economy badly and deeply.
Decades of wars in the region meant that the Rhodesians and the apartheid regime in South Africa and the then South West Africa (Namibia) would from time to time bomb Zambian infrastructure causing damage that needed Dr Kaunda’s government to repair. And this cost a lot for a country that survived on copper.
In an interview with Harry Kreisler, Executive Director of UC Berkeley's Institute of International Studies and Executive Producer of Conversations with History, Dr Kaunda admits this fact: “We opened our doors and all liberation movements moved from Tanzania to Zambia. That meant being bombed from time to time by South African war planes. Zimbabwe, Southern Rhodesia in those days, the Portuguese in Angola, the Portuguese in Mozambique, the settlers in Namibia, all these were now attacking Zambia because they wanted us to fear that accommodating liberation movements meant being bombed, bridges being destroyed; you build, they will bomb them again, and so on.
“Oil places, where you hide your oil, they come and bomb and destroy those. This is what life then was, but it was something we had to do. When God says, ‘Love they neighbor as thyself’ and ‘Do unto others as you'd have them do unto you’ there's no choice there, if you understood that. We understood that, we accepted it, we worked together.”
Dr Kaunda further says his desire and that of the people of Zambia was to see other countries free from ‘people who did not believe that people of all races were God’s children’.
“We were not fighting for independence of Zambia; we were also very much concerned with seeing to it that our neighbours in that region were becoming independent.
Angola, west of us; Mozambique, west of us; Zimbabwe, south of us; South West Africa (Namibia) and of course, South Africa itself . . .” he said.
This was a good fight for Africa but not for the west and Dr Kaunda became target number one.
When Dr Kaunda took in liberation movements, Dr Kamuzu Banda of Malawi declined to have anything to do with the plight of others.
This was noted by the late Julius Nyerere in his introduction to a book titled Kenneth Kaunda of Zambia: The times and the Man written by the Irish missionary Fergus Macpherson:
"If Kenneth Kaunda and the people of Zambia had decided that it was too difficult, like Dr. Banda in Malawi had done, we would not participate in the struggle." President Nyerere wrote, "We all would have understood that this was really the right thing for him and the people of Zambia to do. They went ahead because they believed in what they were doing."
But to understand Dr Kaunda better – to know the depth and width of heart – has to go back into his childhood where he used music as a weapon to get through to the people.
PART 2 to follow
Havana, Cuba, June 7.- The President of Cuba’s Councils of State and Ministers, Army General Raul Castro held talks on Thursday with Kenneth David Kaunda, the first president of the Republic of Zambia, who is paying a visit to the island.
Source: Raul Castro Meets Kenneth Kaunda
I’m humbled – KK | Times of Zambia
"We are always indebted to you, Dr. Kaunda...It is the visionary African Statesman that invited the African National Congress and other liberation movements to settle here in Zambia when it was not fashionable to do so. For Dr. Kaunda, it was just the right thing to do. For that, he and Zambia paid a heavy price for the more than three decades of support, solidarity and compassion. He was the driving force behind the expulsion of South Africa from the Commonwealth because of apartheid...thi s testified to the character of Dr. Kaunda to peace and freedom.
The African Union...will on May 25 this year be celebrating 50 years. You will agree with me that there is no better human being, no better African that embodies the values of our continental body."
- South African High Commissioner to Zambia Kgoshi Piet-Mathebe speaking at Mulungushi International Conference Hall at an RSA organized event to celebrate Dr. Kaunda's 89th birthday. The Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (POPCRU) honored the President Kaunda for his role in the liberation of various countries in the region, including South Africa. Present were COSATU President Dlamini, POPCRU president Zizamele Cebekhulu and SA Communist Party executive member Charles Setsubi.
Photo: Me with President Kaunda and Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe.
I welcome this opportunity of visiting the United States this year. Your words of welcome are most touching, and your thoughts about me and my country, very kind indeed. The warm and friendly reception extended to me, two of my children, and my entire delegation, is memorable. I bring friendly greetings from the people of Zambia to the people of the United States.
This is not my first visit to this great country, but being in the United States today is not the same thing, is not the same thing as being here a few years ago. There is an air of freshness which is invigorating to all those who are committed to the cause of man the world over. This new atmosphere which has brought America closer to many nations, nations which hitherto had been estranged, is the product, is the product of President Carter.
His spirit and principles have brought inspiration to many nations, particularly in the Third World and among the oppressed. He has given new hopes for improved relations and cooperation between America and Africa and the rest of the Third World.
Since coming into office, President Carter has played host to a number of African leaders. His epoch-making visit to Africa signifies a new recognition of the importance of Africa to America, just as we have always recognized the importance of America to Africa.
We welcome this new approach to Africa's problems. Naturally, Africa expects more from a great country like America, for the challenges of the future are too serious to be ignored, too great, too great to be left to chance, too urgent, too urgent to be left to time.
Africa is growing stronger by the day. Through the development of her vast resources, Africa's contribution to peace and the well-being of mankind is growing. The people of Africa are now a decisive force in the maintenance of international peace and security.
So, Africa is no longer of interest only to multinational corporations but is also important in the maintenance of peace the world over. President Carter's Africa policy reflects a new realism on the part of the American Government in dealing with issues concerning Africa.
We in Zambia will always, Mr. President, support any efforts aimed at creating greater understanding, unity, and cooperation among various peoples of the world without regard to race, color, creed, or station in life.
We therefore look forward to a very fruitful visit, not only to Washington, D.C., but to the various States in the next few days.
Once again, Mr. President, I thank you for this memorable and touching reception. May God bless you and all the good people of your country and thank you.
Note: President Carter and President Kaunda spoke at 10:35 a.m. in the East Room at the White House.
May 17, 1978
District of Columbia
PRESIDENT CARTER. It's a great honor for me as President of the United States to welcome to our country a great man and a friend, Kenneth Kaunda, the President of Zambia.
The last time he was here was 3 years ago. His wife, Betty, was with him. And they captured the hearts of Americans by an impromptu musical performance that was brought back to my own memory by his singing of the words of the national anthem, a few minutes ago, of his fine country.
Since that visit, in 3 years, a lot has happened. Momentous changes have occurred and are presently taking place in the southern part of Africa.
His neighbors are standing in admiration of his leadership and using the example set by this great man as a vision of what might be accomplished in the countries still in turmoil, where human rights have not been achieved, and where many black people are deprived of the right to vote, to participate in the shaping of their own government's policy, their own destiny, and are also deprived of the right of equality of opportunity and life.
President Kaunda is a deeply religious man. And the principles of his Christian beliefs have shaped his private and his public life. He's an idealist. He's a man of great integrity which has never been questioned. He's a man who has provided, among the frontline state leaders, a constant vision or perception of what might be in his neighboring state of Zimbabwe, or Rhodesia. He's a good partner for us.
I think it's accurate to say that our hopes for a future life in Rhodesia is the same as his. We want to see a community in peace. We want to see a government that is fair, where the rights of all citizens might be protected and ensured; the right to participate in government is open to all on an equal basis; that elections might be held that are open and free, and each person has one vote. We want to see a nation where majority rule can be instituted for a change.
The same thing applies to Namibia the entire southern part of Africa.
I look forward to these conferences that I will have with President Kenneth Kaunda with a great deal of anticipation and pleasure. He's a man who is a senior statesman, who understands the overall principles and the details of the complicated interrelationships that exist among the tribes of southern Africa, the unique qualities of the people of each nation, and the failures that have up until this moment been experienced in bringing freedom and a life of hope to many people in his region.
Zambia is a nation that has been close to us. And it's with a great deal of pleasure that I welcome to our country this statesman, and with a great deal of regret that we note that his wife, Betty, could not be with him on this visit.
President Kaunda, on behalf of the people of our country, we welcome you as a friend.
President Kaunda responds to US President Gerald R. Ford at White House Dinner:
Mr. President, Mrs. Ford, brothers and sisters:
I first want to express my deep appreciation and gratitude for inviting me to visit Washington, D.C. I also thank you, the Government, and the people of the United States for their warm welcome and the kind hospitality given to my wife and I and the entire Zambian delegation.
Mr. President, we are happy to be in Washington, D.C. It is a very brief visit, but since we come for specific objectives, it is not the duration that matters, but the results.
So far, we have done a lot. We find we have a lot in common on vital issues affecting mankind. Our discussions have been characterized by a spirit of frankness and cordiality.
This spirit, coupled by the definition of areas of urgent action, should move the U.S. and Africa closer towards the attainment of our common objectives.
We come, Mr. President, to America with a clear purpose. We simply want to be understood. We seek American understanding of Africa's objectives and America's fullest support in the attainment of these objectives.
The relations between Zambia and the United States cause me no concern, because they are cordial, although there is room for improvement through more sound cooperation.
What gives Zambia and Africa great cause for concern is, Mr. President, America's policy towards Africa--or is it the lack of it, which, of course, can mean the same thing.
I have not worked at the U.N., but I have been told that at the U.N. sometimes there are tricks in which an abstention in a vote can be a vote for or against.
A no-policy position may not be a neutral position indicative of a passive posture, but a deliberate act of policy to support the status quo or to influence events in one direction or the other at a particular time.
You will forgive us, Mr. President, for our candor if we reaffirmed on this occasion our dismay at the fact that America has not fulfilled our expectations. Our dismay arises from a number of factors.
We are agreed that peace is central, that peace is central to all human endeavors. Our struggle for independence was designed to build peace, and thank God, our people have enjoyed internal peace.
We are agreed, Mr. President, that we must help strengthen peace wherever it is threatened. There has been no peace in southern Africa for a very long time, a very long time indeed, even if there was no war as such.
The absence of war does not necessarily mean peace. Peace, as you know, Mr. President, dear brothers and sisters, is something much deeper, much deeper than that.
The threat of escalation of violence is now real. It is our duty to avoid such an escalation. We want to build peace in the place of violence, racial harmony in place of disharmony, prosperity in place of economic stagnation, security in place of insecurity now dogging every family every day.
Mr. President, to build genuine peace in southern Africa, we must recognize with honesty the root causes of the existing conflict.
First, colonialism in Rhodesia and Namibia--the existence of a rebel regime in Rhodesia has since compounded that problem. Second, apartheid and racial domination in South Africa.
Over the last few years, a number of catalytic factors have given strength to these forces of evil.
External economic and strategic interests have flourished in colonial and apartheid regimes. Realism and moral conscience dictate that those who believe in peace must join hands in promoting conditions for peace. We cannot declare our commitment to peace and yet strengthen forces which stand in the way of the attainment of that peace.
The era of colonialism has ended. Apartheid cannot endure the test of time. Our obligation is that these evil systems end peacefully--peacefully.
To achieve our aim, we need America's total commitment, total commitment to action consistent with that aim. So far, American policy, let alone action, has been low-keyed. This has given psychological comfort to the forces of evil.
We become, Mr. President, even more dismayed when the current posture of America towards Africa is set against the background of historical performance in the late fifties and early sixties.
Now, we ask and wonder, what has happened throughout America? Have the principles changed? The aspirations of the oppressed have not changed, have not changed at all. In desperation, their anger has exploded their patience. Their resolve to fight, if peaceful negotiations are impossible, is borne out by history.
So, their struggle has now received the baptism of fire; victories in Mozambique and Angola have given them added inspiration. Africa has no reason-no reason at all--not to support the liberation movements.
Can America still end only with declarations of support for the principles of freedom and racial justice? This, I submit, Mr. President, would not be enough.
At this time, America cannot realistically wait and see what administering powers will do or to pledge to support their efforts when none are in plan. America must heed the call of the oppressed.
America, once an apostle in decolonization, must not be a mere disciple of those which promise but never perform and thus give strength to evils of colonialism and apartheid.
If we want peace, we must end the era of inertia in Rhodesia and in Namibia and vigorously work for ending apartheid. America must now be in the vanguard of democratic revolution in southern Africa. This is not the first time we make this appeal. It is Africa's constant plea.
Now, Africa has taken an unequivocal stand on decolonization. We do not want to fight a war to win freedom and full national independence in southern Africa. Africa wants to achieve these objectives by peaceful means--that is, through negotiations.
We feel it to be our moral duty to avoid bloodshed where we can.
We are determined to fulfill this obligation but, Mr. President, not at any price--not at any price; not at the price of freedom and justice. There we say no. No.
The oppressed people have a right to answer force with force, and Africa and all her friends in the world will support them.
Liberation movements fought fascist Portugal. We supported them. They won, they won. Now we must turn to Rhodesia and Namibia.
Here is a chance in a century to achieve peace based on human equality and human dignity without further violence.
We call upon America to support our efforts in achieving majority rule in Rhodesia and Namibia immediately and the ending of apartheid in South Africa. If we are committed to peace, then let us join hands in building peace by removing factors underlying the current crisis.
If the oppressed peoples fail to achieve these noble ends by peaceful means, we call upon America not to give any support to the oppressors. Even now we call upon America to desist from direct and indirect support to minority regimes, for this puts America in direct conflict with the interests of Africa; that is, peace deeply rooted, deeply rooted in human dignity and equality and freedom without discrimination.
The rebels in Rhodesia, assisted by South African troops, have committed some of the worst atrocities on the continent. Africa cannot allow them to continue, and we urge America not to allow them to continue.
Victory for the majority is a matter of time, a matter of time. Let us, therefore, make it as painless as possible to those who have dominated their fellow men for years.
Mr. President, we wish America to understand our aims and objectives. We are not fighting whites. We are fighting an evil and brutal system. On this there must be no compromise, none at all.
America should also understand our strategy. We want to achieve our objectives by peaceful methods first and foremost. Africa is ready to try this approach with patience and exhaust all possible tactics, for peace is too precious, is too precious for all of us. But our patience and the patience of the oppress:d has its limits.
Mr. President, we are here only for a short time. We have no other mission except to take the opportunity of the visit to put Africa's stand clearly. We want to avoid confrontation, but let us not be pushed.
Once again, Mr. President, on behalf of my wife and my compatriots and, indeed, on my own behalf, I thank you, Mrs. Ford, and all our colleagues, brothers and sisters, for this warm welcome and hospitality.
This is indeed a memorable visit, memorable because it has been fruitful, and it coincides with the launching only yesterday of your Bicentennial celebrations. We congratulate the people of the United States for their tremendous achievements since independence, which have justified the anticolonialist struggle of their Founding Fathers.
Finally, I take the opportunity of inviting you, Mr. President and Mrs. Ford, to pay a visit to Zambia. We will be happy to receive you in our country at any time convenient to you. And may I say, sir, at that time I might answer the challenge of playing golf. [Laughter]
I now invite you, ladies and gentlemen, to join me and my wife and my colleagues in this toast to the President and Mrs. Ford.
Mr. President, Mrs. Ford, bilateral relations.
My note: Sen. Edward Kennedy moved a motion in Congress that President Kaunda's speech be entered into the Congressional Records. It was. I received a copy of the record from the Zambian Embassador to the UN.