Flashback to 1966: Britain’s “Fiddling” in Rhodesia
Rhodesia Unable to Delegate Its Authority
Britain’s “fiddling” in Africa
British leadership has proved to be disastrously alien and remote from Africa – it has fiddled with affairs in Africa without truly comprehending the issues involved, said Mr. J. H. Howman, Minister of Information, Immigration and Tourism, when he spoke to the Salisbury Rotarians earlier this month.
“No nation with the slightest remnant of self- respect can delegate authority to another”, he said, “especially when that Power is remote from its traditions and practices. No Rhodesian Government could in the Rhodesian view, prudently or safely delegate its decisions to people from ‘beyond the walls.'”
It seemed to him, said Mr. Howman, that it was the British concept that she provided a unilateral guarantee of security, that she expressed a series of well-defined British interests with which other interests must necessarily coincide and that in effect all the Rhodesians has to do was tag along if they wished to survive.
“The British concept of majority rule is in essence that the government should be in the hands of persons the colour of whose skin is black and happen to be the more numerous.
“It is a purely racial approach, based on a mechanical conception of the counting of heads to determine the seat of power.
“Yet everything worthwhile in this world is based upon and is the result of human quality or virtue – a good farmer means a good farm – a good herdsman means a good herd. There is no short circuit – no short cut, and the whole purpose of political existence and organization is to avoid and keep at bay the anarchy, the misery and the poverty into which, without responsible government, man must invetiably fall because of the conflicting passions of his imperfect nature.
“Without the establishment of men trained in and accustomed to the art of government, men accustomed to ensuring order and obedience to order, which is indespensable to progress, happiness and human civilization, any society must relaspe into anarchy or become an absolute dictatorship.
“It is this basic fact that is at the root of our Rhodesian philosophy, which is that a country is amply justified in limiting the franchise to those inhabitants capable of exercising it with reason, judgement and public spirit.
“We seek to ensure this by two means – firstly an educational test on the theory that you thereby have a mind that is trained and disciplined in some degree, and secondly, a means test on the theory that a man earning more than a mere subsistence or acquiring propoerty of some substance has the necessary qualities of character and mind.
“There can be no general rule without hard cases, but no one has yet devised a more certain, practical or logical approach to the exercise of the franchise. What we do know is that there can be no progress on the basis of an uninformed, emotional mass electorate and that adult suffrage, inherent in majority rule would, in Rhodesia, place control in the hands of those unequipped to exercise it. The mob may be able to form judegements of the personal qualities of candidates – but that is no enough, for a voter must be able to form an opinion with the merits of the poilcy presented to him.
“What is so wicked is that such philosophies – having no taint or circumstance of race – are dismissed as a device for “preserving a privilege” in white hands.”
Editor: Since Britain’s ‘fiddling’ in Rhodesia, the British tax payer has forked out billions of pounds to support the ZANU-PF dictators destroying the nation.