The general elections in Southern Rhodesia caught one third of the people qualified to vote unawares.
The general elections in Southern Rhodesia caught one third of the people qualified to vote unawares. They hadn't registered. So about 50,000 people including 1,600 Africans will be entitled to elect 30 members of Parliament. An optimal preferential voting system is used.
They may choose the present Government party which has been in power for over twenty years. The Government called the election because its new leader, Sir Edgar Whitehead, failed to win a seat in Parliament.
Another choice is the party led by Mr Garfield Todd, who was Prime Minister for four years up to February.
Or there's the new Conservative Dominion party led by Mr Ray Stockil.
Campaigning has been friendly, gentlemanly. Most candidates are known personally to their electors, and they've used the old methods of door-to-door visit and local meeting. No loudspeaker vans or party broadcasts in Rhodesia.
White Rhodesians are outnumbered 12 to one by Africans, Mr Todd's United Rhodesia party wants to push on with African advancement; so does Sir Edgar Whitehead's United Federal party, but not quite so fast. Mr Stockil's new Dominion party emphasises practical industrial training for Africans, but is cautious about political advancement. There are no African candidates, but the African vote is important in a few constituencies. All parties have an eye to the forthcoming Federal Elections, which will elect the government that in 1960 will negotiate for independent status within the Commonwealth for the whole Federation of the Rhodesians and Nyasaland.