• Short Summary

    Ten years ago - on April 26th, 1964 - the state of Tanzania was formed by the union of two newly-independent nations, Tanganyika and Zanzibar.

  • Description

    Ten years ago - on April 26th, 1964 - the state of Tanzania was formed by the union of two newly-independent nations, Tanganyika and Zanzibar.

    Tanganyika was the first to claim its independence from Britain when, in December, 1961. President Julius Nyerere assumed control of the nation.

    At that time the island of Zanzibar was still a Sultanate under British protection. The island which derived its livelihood from the protection of spices, was dominated by its Arab community, which numbered 50,000 out of a total population of 300,000.

    However, progress towards independence was being made. The first general elections ever called on the island were held in January, 1961. All parties contesting the elections, however, were in favour of the island remaining within the British Commonwealth.

    But the election was inconclusive and was followed by serious rioting between African and Arab factions. This internal disunity lingered on for the next two years. Within a month of Zanzibar's independence in December, 1963, an armed rebellion, led by self-styled Field Marshall John Okello. shook the island.

    Okello's reign was short-lived, but in his two months of power, thousand of Arabs were killed or imprisoned, and this ended forever their power on the island.

    Okello was succeeded by Sheik Abeid Karume, leader of the Afro-Shirazi Party, whose regime was characterised by a rigid, autocratic rule which effectively ended all political opposition.

    The decision to unite the island with mainland Tanganyika was largely the outcome of President Nyerere's policies, but the proposal appealed to Zanzibar's new leaders.

    The act of union was finally signed in Dar-es-Salaam on April 26th, 1964. It created a new state of Tanzania, with President Nyerere retaining the leadership and with Sheik Karume as First Vice-President.

    For years after, however, the which between mainland and island has been more apparent than real. Karume retained absolute control of affairs on Zanzibar, running further and further into internal troubles as a result of his political persecution and extortion. He was assassinated in 1972, and it is only since then that Zanzibar, under First Vice-President Aboud Jumbe, leader of the Afro-Shirazi Party, has moved politically and commercially nearer President Nyerere's mainland government.

    SYNOPSIS: Dar-es-Salaam, December, 1961 ...and President Nyerere assumes control of newly-independent Tanganyika. It was the era of african independence, and the future President Kenyatta of Kenya was at the ceremony. But this was only the beginning of the state that was to become Tanzania.

    Tanganyika was not to become Tanzania until it united with this island -- Zanzibar -- which stands in the Indian Ocean off the East African coast. When Tanganyika was declaring its independence from British rule, this island was still a Sultanate under British protection. Once the centre of the african slave trade, it now depended for its livelihood on spices such as cloves which grew in abundance.

    Arab Sultans had ruled here since 1804 and the Arab population -- about one-sixth of the total -- had achieved dominance.

    The first steps towards Zanzibar's own independence came with the island's first elections. The people of Zanzibar went eagerly to the polls to vote for three main parties -- all of whom favoured remaining within the British Commonwealth after becoming independent.

    But this man, the self-styled Field Marshal John Okello, made a mockery of the elections. He seized power in January 1964 in an armed revolt which opened up the divisions between Arab and African which had been simmering beneath the surface in Zanzibar for years. In the ensuing riots, thousands of Arabs were killed or thrown into prison. Okello's reign was short-lived but he set the pattern for the eclipse of Arab power.

    Okello was succeeded by Sheikh Abeid Karume, leader of the island's Afro-Shirazi party. His regime was characterised by a rigid, autocratic rule which effectively ended all political opposition.

    But it was Karume who came to Dar-es-Salaam in April, 1964 -- just four months after Zanzibar's independence -- to sign the instrument of union with mainland Tanganyika. Out of this came modern, united Tanzania. The decision to unite the two territories in one state was largely the outcome of President Nyerere's policies, which found favour with Zanzibar's new leaders. Nyerere himself was Tanzania's President, with Karume as First Vice-President.

    But it took years before the union really worked. Karume remained in autocratic control of Zanzibar until assassinated in 1972, when a new regime took charge.

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    VLVA3L2K48H2EOGHQZQTK2CYT3AS6
    Media URN:
    VLVA3L2K48H2EOGHQZQTK2CYT3AS6
    Group:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Archive:
    Reuters
    Issue Date:
    23/04/1974
    Sound:
    Unknown
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Black & White
    Duration:
    00:03:00:00
    Time in/Out:
    /
    Canister:
    N/A

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