Hastings Banda facts for kids
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Hastings Kamuzu Banda
Statue of Banda
|1st President of Malawi|
6 July 1966 – 24 May 1994
|Preceded by||Elizabeth II
as Queen of Malawi
|Succeeded by||Bakili Muluzi|
|Prime Minister of Malawi|
6 July 1964 – 6 July 1966
|Governor-General||Sir Glyn Smallwood Jones|
|Preceded by||Post created|
|Succeeded by||Himself as President|
|Born||c. March or April, 1898
Kasungu, British Central Africa Protectorate
|Died||25 November 1997
(age c. 99)|
|Political party||Malawi Congress Party|
Hastings Kamuzu Banda (c. 1898 – 25 November 1997) was the Prime Minister and later President of Malawi from 1964–1994 (for the first year of his rule as it achieved independence in 1964, Malawi was the British protectorate of Nyasaland). In 1966, the country became a republic and he became president.
He was formally appointed Prime Minister of Nyasaland, and led the country to independence in 1964. Two years later, he proclaimed Malawi a republic with himself as president.
He consolidated power and later declared Malawi a one-party state under the Malawi Congress Party (MCP). In 1970, the MCP made him the party's President for Life. In 1971, he became President for Life of Malawi itself.
Banda attended school in the United States. In 1928 he graduated from the school that is now Central State University in Ohio. Next he attended Indiana University as a premedical student. After four semesters he transferred to the University of Chicago. He graduated in 1931. Banda then studied medicine at Meharry Medical College in Tennessee.
Banda was required to get a second medical degree in order to practice medicine in the British Empire. He attended the University of Edinburgh. Between 1941 and 1945, he worked as a doctor in North Shields.
In 1946 he represented the Nyasaland African Congress at the fifth Pan African Congress in Manchester. He began to take more interest in home country.
Banda was against the efforts of Sir Roy Welensky. Welensky wanted to form a federation between Southern and Northern Rhodesia with Nyasaland (Malawi).
In 1951 he moved to the Gold Coast in West Africa. Banda finally returned to Nyasaland on 6 July 1958. In August he was named as the leader of the Congress. He spoke against colonialism and for independence. In 1963, he was formally made Nyasaland’s prime minister. On 6 July 1964, Nyasaland became the independent Commonwealth of Malawi.
A renowned anti-communist leader in Africa, he received support from the Western Bloc during the Cold War. He generally supported women's rights, improved the country's infrastructure and maintained a good educational system relative to other African countries.
However he also presided over one of the most repressive regimes in Africa, an era that saw political opponents regularly tortured and murdered. Human rights groups estimate that at least 6,000 people were killed, tortured and jailed without trial. As many as 18,000 people were killed during his rule, according to one estimate.
By 1993, amid increasing domestic and international pressure, he agreed to hold a referendum which ended the one-party system. Soon afterwards, a special assembly ended his life-term presidency and stripped him of most of his powers. Banda ran for president in the democratic elections that followed and he was defeated.
Banda died at the Garden city Clinic in Johannesburg, South Africa on 25 November 1997, aged 99.
Images for kids
Opening ceremony for the Banda Mausoleum, 14 May 2006 – Lilongwe, Malawi
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