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      Guest For  WEDNESDAY FEBRUARY 16, 2005
                                              (Originally aired: May 1997)

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          DR. KENNETH D. KAUNDA

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                                   Dr. Kenneth D. Kaunda  
    FOUNDING PRESIDENT OF ZAMBIA

WELCOME TO DR KENNETH KAUNDA

kennethkaunda@yahoo.com

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More about the HONORABLE KENNETH KAUNDA

WELCOME TO DR KENNETH KAUNDA's HOME PAGE

The founding President of ZAMBIA

THE GANDHI OF AFRICA

Dr Kenneth Kaunda Founding President of Zambia
MAY GOD BLESS YOU
 

Click on the following links to read news articles about me

http://www.timesofindia.com/290300/29worl30.htm An article by the Times of India.

http://www.signgray.demon.co.uk/atlas/kaunda.htm An interview with the Atlas Group.

http://www.greatepicbooks.com/kaunda.html A page by one of my fans.

 Madam Betty Kaunda the first Lady A page dedicated to her Birthday.

Read About the Late Major Wezi Kaunda's Assassination

Dr Kaunda's Great Legacy

Samples of old Zambian Coins and Stamps

links to News Media about Zambia
Zambezi Times Online
UNZA E-mail search Facility
 
Website with links to other Zambian sites 
Click to View pictures of Lusaka 
See the Map of Zambia

Keep on visiting this page for updated news about Dr Kaunda and related links.

Thank you for visiting this page Visitor Number :

Send E-mail to Dr Kaunda on kennethkaunda@yahoo.com

Page created for and on behalf of the Great Leader by JANARDAN CHAUDHARY
you can send email to Bobby on bobbychaudhary@yahoo.com

 

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Volume 1 May 1997 Number 2

DR. KENNETH KAUNDA
HIS LEGACY OF GREATNESS

Dr. Kaunda

The turn of my calendar page has lead to this month's newsletter, in place of my planned Great Epic Newsletter about Sir Harry Johnston. Sir Harry will definitely be with us in June.

April 28th (1924) is the birthdate of another of Africa's great sons, Dr. Kenneth David Kaunda, Founding Father and first Head of State of the Republic of Zambia (formerly Northern Rhodesia).

As in the previous newsletter about the LIBRARY OF DR. H. KAMUZU BANDA (April, 1997) this epistle will try not to stray into the political arena, although I would really like to very much, given the treatment of these great men, both my friends, at the hands of the new, so-called Democratic governments. But I digress and will abstain from political commentary. I will, however, share with you a little about this extraordinarily talented, caring man.

Kenneth Kaunda was the youngest of eight children. He was born at the Lubwa Mission Station in Northern Rhodesia to a loving and caring family presided over, until his untimely early death, by his honored father, the Reverend David Kaunda, an ordained Church of Scotland missionary and teacher. His mother was one of the first women teachers in the country. In addition to great love and spirituality, young Kenneth's childhood was greatly influenced by books. He read continually, encouraged by his parents to search diligently for knowledge in the pages of all of the books available to him.

Kenneth's early years were marked by excellence, a standard that continues to this day. He excelled at Munali Secondary School in Lusaka. After graduating, he earned a teaching certificate and returned home to take up the post of headmaster at Chinsali Mission.

In 1949, his life changed forever. Political change was fermenting as Dr. H. Kamuzu Banda, Harry Nkumbula and others intensified their fight against Britain's imposition of Federation for Central Africa, what in 1953 was to become the hated Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland. Twenty-five year old Kenneth Kaunda began a bicycle tour of Northern Rhodesia with his ever-present guitar, singing original freedom songs. His unique political efforts resulted in the establishment of 116 branches of the African National Congress (ANC). In 1953, the ANC membership elected him Secretary General of the party. His leadership challenge to the British government resulted in his imprisonment in Lusaka.

Like Dr. Banda who has always claimed that his thirteen month Gwelo imprisonment was "the vacation" that allowed him to think and plan creatively, so too Kenneth Kaunda used his time in Her Majesty's "Hotel" to formulate and develop the revolutionary political concept that eventually was called "Zambian Humanism", an expression of faith in the common men and women and a belief in non-violent attainment of all goals. He left prison determined to live an exemplary personal life, renouncing all forms of indulgences including tobacco, rich, unhealthy food and drink and alcohol in any form. He became a vegetarian. His personal life style to this day is one of careful moderation and morality.

In 1958, Kenneth Kaunda or, as he is affectionately called by his many friends worldwide, "KK", broke away from the ANC and formed the Zambia African National Congress (ZANC) which was quickly banned by the colonial authorities. KK was first restricted then re-arrested and whilst in Salisbury prison, suffered a recurrence of tuberculosis. Nine months of prison solitude, controlled at all times by his strict personal discipline, resulted in his full recovery and finally, release in 1960.

He immediately formed and became President of the United National Independence Party (UNIP), the political party that ultimately, working with Dr. Banda's Malawi Congress Party in Nyasaland, overthrew the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland. In 1962, KK was elected a member of the Legislative Council of Northern Rhodesia and Minister of Local Government and Social Welfare in the coalition government of the United National Independence Party and the African National Congress. In 1963, with Zambian independence on the horizon, KK became Prime Minister. Finally, on October 24, 1964, in the full realization of all of the desires of Northern Rhodesia's majority African population, H. E. Kenneth David Kaunda assumed the elected office of President of the new Republic of Zambia.

His "new" office did not result in a "new" man. He worked with his usual passion and dedication, often 18 to 20 hours a day. When in need of a moment's respite, he sat at his piano or strummed his ever-present guitar, playing and singing hymns. Although raised by his father as a Presbyterian, KK and his wife Betty were happy and spiritually replenished worshipping regularly with fellow citizens of all denominations represented in Zambia.


L. to R. - Mama C. Tamanda Kadzamira, H. E. Dr. Kenneth Kaunda,
H. E. Dr. H. Kamuzu Banda, Madam Betty Kaunda

As Head of State, he delivered passionate speeches on subjects ranging from poverty alleviation and drunk driving to AIDS and apartheid. As the Chairman of the Frontline States, it was KK's leadership that resulted in the release of Nelson Mandela and the incredible changes that have taken place in South Africa.

Despite an intense, never-ending work schedule, KK had time to write a number of powerful books. Foremost among these are BLACK GOVERNMENT?, Lusaka: United Society for Christian Literature (with Colin Morris); ZAMBIA SHALL BE FREE, London: Heinemann 1962; LETTER TO MY CHILDREN, London: Longman 1973; and KAUNDA ON VIOLENCE, London: Collins 1980.

LETTER TO MY CHILDREN is an extraordinary book, bearing the noble soul and spirit of this great man as he leaves to his progeny this choice legacy dealing with faith, values, humanism, music, courage, freedom and other important and life-guiding issues. A truly marvelous volume of great value to all who read it.

Of equal importance were the thought provoking books that were written to expand and fully develop the concept of Zambian Humanism. Noteworthy examples are Timothy K. Kandeke's FUNDAMENTALS OF ZAMBIAN HUMANISM, Lusaka: National Education Company of Zambia, 1977; Bastiaen de Gaay Fortman's AFTER MULUNGUSHI (for which KK wrote the foreword), Nairobi: East African Publishing 1969; and Henry Meebelo's MAIN CURRENTS OF ZAMBIAN HUMANIST THOUGHT, Lusaka: Oxford University Press 1973. All three of these (and others) do justice to this important concept of Governance, use of power and the elevation of the human life and spirit.

Dr. Kenneth Kaunda left office in October, 1991, defeated in a "free and fair election". He was very much a political victim of the times; the end of the cold war with former friends, big powers, including the United States, turning against him and supporting his opponent; the worst drought in recorded Central African history, resulting in a hungry populace; an overwhelming AIDS epidemic which, very sadly, claimed his own son, and a very young discontented population with no sense of KK's historical accomplishments, and little or no desire to work hard to overcome obstacles and continue the development of Zambia.

Dr. Kaunda and his wife Betty live in retirement in Lusaka. He travels occasionally. In mid-1996, I spent the day with him in Vancouver, BC, where he attended the International AIDS Conference.

We talked about many things. . . memories of yesterday and dreams of tomorrow. KK lamented the loss of so-called friends when one is out of power and, indeed, went so far as to say that he has few friends now outside of Zambia. I responded by saying that his friends are numerous and give him credit for his many years of dedication and achievement. With those words, there was a knock at the hotel room door. I rose and answered it, admitting a room service waiter with coffee for me. He stepped into the room and stopped short with his mouth agape. "Are you Dr. Kenneth Kaunda?" "Yes I am". "My God. My God. You have been my political idol for years", said the waiter, a Fijian Indian immigrant to Canada. He was truly in shock. I took the tray.

Dr. Kaunda and Donal Brody

Dr. Kaunda rose and shook his hand and embraced him. They spoke for a few minutes and Dr. Kaunda walked with him to the door. When he returned, I said "Your Excellency, on my honour Sir, I did not orchestrate that. It is just a small example of the many, many friends who care for you very much and pay you respect for all that you have done and continue to do in Africa."

He is still the dear gentleman of yesteryear who evoked a fond memory of a 1967 visit to the red-brick, Georgian-style, State House in Lusaka, when His Excellency, Dr. Kenneth David Kaunda, President of the Republic of Zambia, offered to serve me tea. When I protested he smiled his charming smile and said "Please, Dr. Brody, I want to show you what a fine houseboy I was". And the tea, indeed, was beautifully served.

A new Great Epics™ Newsletter will be posted monthly with ARCHIVE recall of all previous issues.

The next Great Epic Newsletter. . . Sir Henry Johnston, G.C.M.B, K.C.B. - The Tiny Giant

May 97 © Great Epic Books™

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Wednesday February 16, 2005

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