Path: Table of Contents > Essay on Party Politics > Party 073
Northern Rhodesia African National Congress, 073
Variables and Codes for 1950-1962
For the concepts and variables below, use these links to Political Parties: A Cross-National Survey:
Governmental Status
Issue Orientation
Goal Orientation
Organizational Complexity
Organizational Power
Organizational Coherence
Membership Involvement
The "ac" code is for "adequacy-confidence"--a data quality measure ranging from 0 (low) to 9 (high)
Party name and code number
Northern Rhodesian African National Congress, 073
Information base and researchers
The information base for party politics in the Rhodesian and Nyasaland Federation consists of 2,302 pages from 96 documents, with 317 pages or 14 percent pertaining to the Northern Rhodesian African National Congress. Howard Matthews indexed the literature for retrieval. Donald Hook coded the variables. James Scarritt was our consultant.

Institutionalization Variables, 1.01-1.06
1.01 year of origin and 1.02 name changes
1948, ac7
4, ac7
The African National Congress can trace its history to the Federation of African welfare societies that was formed in the copper belt in 1946. This was just a loose Federation of various welfare societies for social reform. In 1948 they became the Northern Rhodesian congress which had a more political overtone than the Federation. When the goals of the party became truly political, the name was changed in 1951 to the African National Congress.
1.03 organizational discontinuity
16, ac7
The ANC was continuous for our entire time period. However, the party was torn by dissension in the middle and latter half of the time period. A major split occurred in 1958 out of which the zambian African National Congress was formed, later becoming the United National Independence Party. Another group split off in 1962 to join the UNIP. There was another split in 1963 to form the Peoples Democratic Congress.
1.04 leadership competition
11, ac9
Godwin Lewanika founded the party, but he was replaced in 1951 by Harry Nkumbala by a vote of 19 to 5. Nkumbala resisted later attempts to remove him from the party"s leadership. Kenneth Kaunda provided the focus for Nkumbala"s opposition, and Kaunda eventually led a major split from the party.
1.05 / 2.05 legislative instability and strength instability is undefined
strength is .00 for 1950-56, ac9, and .00 for 1957- 62, ac9
The ANC did not contest elections for the federal assembly and thus held no seats during our time period. Its instability score is undefined. In the 1959 elections to the territorial legislative council, the ANC won 1 of 22 seats, and it won 7 of the 37 seats actually filled in an expanded legislative council in the 1962 elections. But these seats are not included in our scoring .
1.06 / 2.06 electoral instability and strength instability is 1.83, ac3
strength is undefined, ac9
No estimate can be made of the party"s electoral strength at the federal level, for it did not contest the three elections in 1953, 1958, and 1959. Its instability score is based on its absence from these elections. But in the 1962 territorial elections, the ANC took 17 percent of the vote against 22 percent by the united federal party (European) and 65 percent by its African rival, the united national independence party.

Governmental Status Variables, 2.01-2.07
2.01 government discrimination
7 for 1953-57, ac7
0 for 1958-63, ac7
There is a marked shift in government policy toward the ANC from the first and second halves of our time period. The government harassed the ANC up to 1958. When zambia (later UNIP) became a threat for African leadership, the government eased up on ANC due to its more moderate stANCe. It viewed ANC as the lesser of two evils.
2.02 governmental leadership
0 out of 5 for 1953-57, ac9
0 out of 6 for 1958-63, ac9
The ANC never participated in the federal government, and was totally repressed up to 1958. In 1958, the constitution of Northern Rhodesia was changed to give Africans a direct voice in the legislative council. Following the 1962 elections, ANC and UNIP were called on by the governor to form a coalition government which lasted through 1963.
2.03 cabinet participation
0 out of 5 for 1953-57, ac9
0 out of 6 for 1958-63, ac9
The ANC did not participate in the government at the federal level.
2.04 national participation
1, ac9
The African National Congress of Northern Rhodesia was strictly a territorial (Northern Rhodesia) party, it participated only in territorial elections. It was an anti-Federation and independence party.
2.07 outside origin
9, ac7
The ANC was formed in 1948 by the leaders of minor legal social organizations (the Federation of African welfare societies). It was clearly outside of the government as no Africans participated in Rhodesian government at that time.

Issue Orientation Variables, 5.01-5.15
5.01 ownership of means of production
No information
5.02 government role in economic planning
No information
5.03 redistribution of wealth
5, ac3
One of the major government actions to which ANC was opposed was the land reapportionment act which gave most of the land to Europeans. ANC was in favor of redistributing the land. Nkumbula recommended the nationalization of the copper mines in order to assure Africans equal opportunities and wages.
5.04 social welfare
5, ac3
ANC advocated universally applicable social welfare. They wanted to raise the African level of living but couched this in universal terms, to gain wider acceptANCe for their programs.
5.05 secularization of society
No information
5.06 support of the military
No information
5.07 alignment with east-west blocs
No information
5.08 anti-colonialism
1, ac7
The ANC was an anti-Federation party not an anti-brtish party. They wanted self governing status as part of the british commonwealth but separate from southern Rhodesia. They felt the colonial office was better equipped than the Federation to guide Northern Rhodesia to independence. They feared the government would remain in European hands under the Federation.
5.09 supranational integration
3, ac3
The ANC was totally against Federation with southern Rhodesia. However, it did not mind the union with Nyasaland. Nkumbula was in favor of union with thsombe"s congo regieme.
5.10 national integration
5, ac9
The ANC was a nationalist independence party for the territory of Northern Rhodesia. They advocated a complete severANCe from the Central African Federation and the establishment of a nation state in Northern Rhodesia .
5.11 electoral participation
5, ac6
The ANC advocated the adoption of universal adult suffrage.
5.12 protection of civil rights
5, ac6
As an African rights party, ANC advocated both the outlawing of discrimination broadly across social life and the provision for enforcement.
5.13 interference with civil liberties
No information
5.14 / 5.15 us--soviet experts left-right ratings
not rated

Goal Orientation Variables, 6.01-6.55
6.00 open competition in the electoral process
1 for 1st half, ac6
2 for 2nd half, ac6
African members of the legislative council were appointed until 1958. At that point the ANC presented a slate of candidates. Before 1958 they worked for the appointment of ANC members to the assembly by the African representative council.
6.10 restricting party competition
0, ac6
The ANC was not in a position to attempt the restriction of competition.
6.20 subverting the political system
3 for 1st half, ac5
2 for 2nd half, ac5
Our consultant reports that ANC engaged in major demonstrations against the implementation of Federation and numerous boycotts of European ships during the first half of our period. Up until 1958, the ANC worked for direct representation of Africans in the legislative assembly. After this was accomplished, they relied strictly upon open competition with other parties.
6.30 propagandizing ideas and program
6.31--1, ac6. ANC owned a paper (Kwasa) in Salisbury.
6.32--0, ac3. No mention made in material.
6.33--1, ac3. The ANC passed platform statements and resolutions at its conference.
6.34--0, ac3. No mention made in material .
6.50 providing for welfare of party members
No mention made in material.

Autonomy Variables, 7.01-7.05
7.01 sources of funds
2 (sectors 01, 02), ac3
Most monies were raised locally, but no reference is given in the literature to which sector of society raised it. As most Africans were laborers or farmers, it seems to be these sectors.
7.02 source of members
6, ac3
There are no membership requirements mentioned in the literature. Congress had more of a following than a set membership.
7.03 sources of leaders
1 (sector 03), ac3
Most of the ANC leadership came from an intellectual or professional background. Many were educated overseas. The leaders of ANC were educated far above the level of most Africans.
7.04 relations with domestic parties
7 for 1st half, ac6
4 for 2nd half, ac7
ANC was a completely autonomous party up to the ANC-zANC split in 1958. It allied itself twice with other parties after 1959, making a voting alliANCe with the ufp and forming a coalition government with UNIP. It was clearly the weaker member in both.
7.05 relations with foreign organizations
5, ac6
While ANC was nominally associated with the other congresses in the Federation and the pan African movement, there were no formal ties with either. The party was completely autuonmous in this regard.

Organizational Complexity Variables, 8.01-8.07
8.01 structural articulation
6, ac6
Two national organs are mentioned in the literature, the annual conference and the national executive. All party posts and committees were elected from below.
8.02 intensiveness of organization
4, ac6
The ancillary is the basic unit of all Rhodesian politics. The ANC organized on the ancillary level with a number of branches under a provincial executive.
8.03 extensiveness of organization
3, ac6
The party was successful in organizing branches with the exception of the northwest territory and baratosland, but all its branches were in Northern Rhodesia with less than 1/3 of the population in the Federation.
8.04 frequency of local meetings
No information
8.05 frequency of national meetings
3, ac5
The national conference meets once a year. The national executive meets prior to each conference and as is deemed necessary to conduct party business, but there is no mention of how often that is.
8.06 maintaining records
No information
8.07 pervasiveness of organization
3, ac5
ANC had distinct ancillary groups such as the action groups, the youth brigade, and the women"s league, but information as to the strength of such organizations is not readily available.

Organizational Power Variables, 9.01-9.08
9.01 nationalization of structure
3, ac6
The annual conference and the national executive are the supreme national party organs. However, party branches have defied them successfully on such issues as boycotts and the ANC-zANC split.
9.02 selecting the national leader
3, ac6
Lewanika was the founding president of ANC. He was defeated in the 1951 party elections by nkumbula. Nkumbula w the leader for the rest of the time period. He avoided repeated attempts to be unseated at the party conferences.
9.03 selecting parliamentary candidates
No information
9.04 allocating funds
No information
9.05 formulating policy
7, ac7
Nkumbula was in clear control of the party and of policy formation.
9.06 controlling communications
0, ac6
Our consultant says the ANC controlled no media.
9.07 administering discipline
0, ac5
Nkumbula administered the major disciplinary techniques. Nkumbula was very autocratic. People who disagreed with him were either ousted or quit the party. However, our consultant reports that discipline was extremely sporadic. Most of the time a 0 coding would have been justified.
9.08 leadership concentration
6, ac7
Nkumbula was clearly the undisputed leader of the party. He could commit the party to a plan of action. He was recognized by all as the party spokesman.

Coherence Variables, 10.01-10.06
10.01 legislative cohesion
The ANC did not participate in elections to the federal legislature until 1962, when the Federation was in the process of collapse. As a result, the party is uncoded on this variable. In the 1959 elections to the territorial assembly, nkumbula won one of 22 seats. Our consultant states that Nkumbala was replaced by katilungu when nkumbula was jailed, and michello replaced katilungu when katilungu was killed. In the 1952 elections, ANC won five seats and two more in by-elections. There is no information on the party"s cohesiveness in the legislature at the very close of our period.
10.02 ideological factionalism
1, ac4
The ideological orientation of the party is pretty well agreed upon. Minor ideological points are discussed at the convention, but most factionalism is along issue and strategy lines.
10.03 issue factionalism
5 for 1st half, ac3
6 for 2nd half, ac7
The issue which precipitated the split of the UNIP from the ANC in 1958 was acceptANCe of the Northern Rhodesian constitution, which reflected a basic division within the party on the question of cooperation with the Europeans.
10.04 leadership factionalism
5 for 1st half, ac3
6 for 2nd half, ac7
Nkumbula"s leadership had become a point of contention in the party. His moderate stANCe clashed with the increasingly militant attitude of the younger leaders. The factionalism eventually crystallized between nkumbula and Kaunda, who split from the party in 1958 along with a sizable segment of the ANC activists.
10.05 strategic or tactical factionalism
5 for 1st half, ac3
6 for 2nd half, ac7
The question of party strategy revolved around that of immediate action through boycott and other more forceful opposition to the Federation and colonial government and that of more moderate and restrained opposition. Nkumbula followed the more cautious procedure.
10.06 party purges
0 for 1st half, ac8
1 for 2nd half, ac5
A challenge to nkumbula"s leadership started building toward the end of the first time period but did not erupt until the second time period. Nkumbula purged or tried to purge various local organizations to entrench his leadership.

Involvement Variables, 11.01-11.06
11.01 membership requirements
0, ac3
No membership requirements are mentioned in the literature.
11.02 membership participation
1, ac3
Most members seemed active even though the party had only nominal membership. The ANC staged successful local boycotts, and action teams are mentioned in the material.
11.03 material incentives
0, ac3
The ANC had no material incentives to give to members and African parties were discriminated against by employers.
11.04 purposive incentives
4, ac3
Most party workers were purposively motivated by anti-Federation and pro-independence objectives.
11.05 doctrinism
0, ac3
There is no mention of doctrine which party members use to justify their actions.
11.06 personalism
0, ac3
Most party militants were purposively motivated. Nominal members were motivated by nkumbula"s and Kaunda"s charisma. While most militants were purposively motivated, a large percentage foll0wed Kaunda out of the party. However, this can be attributed more to a similarity of objectives between Kaunda and the militants than to charismatic leadership.