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Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula, UNIP And The Roots Of Authoritarianism In Nationalist Zambia

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Chapter Summary

This chapter contends that the immediate antecedents of developments are to be found in the early 1960s, when UNIP and the ANC, the party from which UNIP had sprung and which it eventually defeated in the general elections of 1964, were entangled in a vicious struggle for power and pre-eminence. The tendency to identify opposition to UNIP as illegitimate and 'treasonable' went hand-in-hand with the denial of the right to full political citizenship in the new institutional dispensation to Nkumbula and his ANC. Until the late 1950s, Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula was very much the public face of African nationalism in Northern Rhodesia. The ideological seeds of the one-party state and its natural corollaries, a much-heralded belief in the leader's infallibility and a totalitarian ambition to quash and/or encapsulate autonomous social movements, were already firmly embedded in the Zambian political soil well before the formal declaration of independence in October 1964.

Keywords: Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula; UNIP; Zambia



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