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Political Development and Systems - Class 8 Social Studies

Political Development and Systems

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Political Development and Systems

Early Political Organisations

- Early political activities started in 1920.
- The main grievances of Africans:
  1. They wanted back their land.
  2. Africans were forced to work in the European farms.
  3. They had lost their independence.
  4. They were paid low wages.
- The main political associations include:
  • Kikuyu Association - 1920 - Chief Koinange.
  • Young Kikuyu Association - 1921 - Harry Thuku.
  • East African Association - 1921 - Harry Thuku.
  • Kavirondo Tax Payer's Welfare Association - 1922 - Ezekiel Apindi.
  • Kikuyu Central Association - 1924 - Joseph Kang'ethe.

The legislative council

- Eliud Mathu was the first African to sit in the LegCo.
- In 1946 B.A. Ohanga became the second African.
- In 1957 eight Africans were elected to the LegCo.
  1. Daniel Arap Moi - Rift Valley
  2. Ronald Ngala - Coast
  3. Oginga Odinga - Central Nyanza
  4. Thomas Mboya - Nairobi
  5. Masinde Muliro - North Nyanza
  6. Lawrence Oguda - South Nyanza
  7. James Muimi - Ukambani (Eastern)
  8. Bernard Mate - Central

The second World War (1939-1945)

- The 2nd World War broke out in 1939.
- It involved Germany, Italy and Japan on one side.
- Britain, France and USA were on the the other side.

Effects of the 2nd world war

- Africans learned fighting skills that they were later used in their struggle for independence.
- Africans learned that Europeans were not superior.
- Africans got courage and support from other countries.
- The United Nations Organisation was formed.

Political associations after 1945

  • Kenya African Study Union - 1944 - James Gichuru.
  • Kenya African Union - 1946 - James Gichuru.
  • Kenya African National Union - 1960 - James Gichuru.
  • Kenya African Democratic Union - 1960 - Ronald Ngala.
  • The Mau Mau movement - 1946 - formed by dissatisfied soldiers who disliked KAU's peaceful way of nagotiating.
Major Constitutional amendments since 1963
  • 12th December, 1964 Kenya became a Republic.
  • The constitution was amended to create the post of president.
  • April 1966 the law was amended to make MPs who resign from one party to seek re-election.
  • 1974 Kiswahili was made official language of parliament.
  • 1999 both Kiswahili and English became official languages of parliament.
  • 1974 voting age was lowered to 18 years.
  • 1982 Kenya was made a one party state by law.
  • 1988 queue (mlolongo) voting was introduced.
  • 1991 multiparty democracy was introduced.
  • 1997 several amendments were made in the constitution.
  • 1999 parliamentary select committee was established to review the constitution.
  • 2005 a referendum was held for a new constitution.
  • The constitution was rejected.
  • August 4th 2010 Kenyans voted for a new constitution.
  • August 27th 2010, the new constitution was promulgated therefore making it the written law of Kenya.

Scramble and Partition of Africa

- Europeans started acquiring colonies in Africa towards the end of the 19th century. By 1914 all African countries except Ethiopia and Liberia had been colonised.
- European nations that acquired colonies in Africa were: France, Britain, German, Portugal, Italy, Spain and Belgium.

Reasons for acquiring colonies

  • Europeans wanted to get raw materials.
  • They wanted to establish markets.
  • They wanted to spread christianity.
  • They wanted to settle their surplus population.

African response to colonial rule

- African communities reacted in various ways to European colonization.
- Most communities resisted while others collaborated.

Communities which resisted
  • Nandi - Koitalel Arap Samoei - Kenya.
  • Abagusii against the British in Kenya - led by Otenyo.
  • Baganda led by Kabaka Mwanga.
  • Southern tribes of Tanganyika against the Germans led by Kinjekitile Ngwale.
  • The Hehe people of Tanganyika led by chief Mkwawa.
  • The Mandinka of West Africa against the French led by Samouri Toure.
Communities which collaborated
  • Maasai led by Oloibon Lenana.
  • Abawanga led by Nabongo Mumia.
  • The Lozi people of Zambia led by Lewanika.
  • The Agikuyu of Murang'a led by Karuri wa Gakure.

Colonial Systems of Administration

French in West Africa
  • They used the policy of assimilation. Assimilation refers to the method of making Africans copy French culture and way of life.
  • They wanted the Africans to adopt the French culture.
  • They later changed to the policy of association to integrate African culture.
Belgians in Congo (DRC)
  • King Leopold II had acquired Congo (former Zaire) and administered it as his personal property.
  • The Belgium rule was harsh and cruel.
  • They used the policy of paternalism where Africans were treated to be inferior or little children.
Portuguese in Mozambique
- Like the French the Portuguese considered their colonies as overseas extensions. They used the policy of assimilation.

Struggle for Independence

  • Africans had to take arms and fight for their independence.
  • They fought a long guerilla war with the British(Mau Mau) in 1950's.
  • Kenya attained independence in 1963.
Southern Rhodesia (Zimbabwe)
  • The settlers led by Ian Smith did not want Africans to be independent.
  • Led by several African nationalists, Africans fought a bloody war against the British.
  • Zimbabwe became independent in 1980.
Tanganyika (Tanzania)
  • Struggle for independence in Tanganyika was peaceful and through negotiations.
  • Political parties struggled and organised meetings to demand African rights.
  • Tanganyika became independent in 1961.
Gold Coast (Ghana)
  • Ghana due to its hot and humid climate did not attract many settlers.
  • Ghanaians used peaceful means to demand for independence.
  • Ghana became independent in 1957.

Prominent African leaders

Julius Nyerere
  • He was born in 1922 in Butiama in Tanzania.
  • He went to Makerere and became a teacher.
  • He quit teaching and joined other Africns to demand for independence.
  • He founded TANU in 1954.
  • He became the first president of independent Tanganyika in 1962.
  • He brought reforms in communal work (Ujamaa policy).
  • He retired in 1985 and died in 1999.
Haile Selasie
  • He became the emperor of Ethiopia in 1930.
  • He briefly went to exile in Britain.
  • He brought many reforms in Ethiopia.
  • He ws overthrown in 1974 and died in 1975.
Jomo Kenyatta
  • He was born in 1893 in Kiambu.
  • He went to school at Thogoto and later Britain.
  • He joined other Africans to demand for independence.
  • He was jailed for 7 years in 1952.
  • He became the first president of Kenya in 1964.
  • He died while still in office in 1978.
Jaramogi Oginga Odinga
  • He was born in 1911 in Bondo.
  • He became a teacher at Maseno.
  • He joined other Africans to demand for independence.
  • He became the first vice president of Kenya in 1964.
  • He resigned from the post in 1966.
  • He was actively involved in Kenyans national politics throughout his life.
  • He died in 1994.
  • He is remembered as the doyen of opposition in Kenya.
Daniel Arap Moi
  • He was born in 1924 in Sacho, Baringo.
  • He became a teacher.
  • He was elected to represent Rift Valley in 1955.
  • He became president in 1978.
  • He retired in 2002.
Professor Wangari Maathai
  • She was the first woman professor in Eastern and Central Africa.
  • She became actively involved in environment conservation.
  • She founded the Green Belt Movement.
  • She became the first African woman to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
Leopold Sedar Sengor
  • He was born in 1906 at a local village.
  • He was the first Senegalese president 1960.
  • He wrote poems criticizing the French colonial rule.
  • He retired as president in 1980.
  • He died in 2002.
Nelson Mandela
  • He is a respected African statesman.
  • He was born in 1918 in Transkei, S.Africa.
  • He learned law.
  • He became actively involved in fighting apartheid.
  • He was imprisoned for life in 1963.
  • He was released in 1990.
  • He became the first black president of S.Africa in 1994.
  • He retired in 1999.
  • He won a Nobel Peace Prize.
  • He died in 2013.
Gamal Abdel Nasser
  • He was born in 1918 in Egypt.
  • He became a soldier.
  • In 1954 he overthrew king Mohammed Neguib.
  • He ruled until 1970 when he died.

International Cooperation

United Nations Organization (U.N.O)
  • It was formed in 1945.
  • It was formed to promote world peace and co-operation in the world.
  • It has branches which deal with economic development, social activities and political affairs.
  • Its headquarters is in New York, U.S.A.
The Commonwealth Organisation
  • It is mainly made up of the United Kingdom and former colonies of Britain.
  • It promotes co-operation among its members.
  • The queen of England is the leader.
  • Commonwealth meets after 2 years.
  • Commonwealth games are held after every four years encourage social relationship among members.
Organization of African Unity (O.A.U)
  • Formed in 1963 in Addis Ababa Ethiopia.
  • It was formed to assist other African countries to achieve independence.
  • In 2002 it was changed to African Union (A.U).
  • It promotes peace and co-operation in Africa.

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