Front Cover
 Address to the nationalists'...

Title: Address to the Nationalists' Conference
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00072120/00001
 Material Information
Title: Address to the Nationalists' Conference
Physical Description: 25 p. : port. ; 24 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Nkrumah, Kwame, 1909-1972
Publisher: s.n.
Place of Publication: Accra
Publication Date: 1962
Subject: Nationalism -- Africa   ( lcsh )
Pan-Africanism   ( lcsh )
Genre: non-fiction   ( marcgt )
General Note: Cover title.
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Bibliographic ID: UF00072120
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 25941866

Table of Contents
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        Front Cover
    Address to the nationalists' conference
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Full Text



to the



President of the Republic of Ghana


JUNE 4, 1962




THE heavens cannot be all a cluster of stars but the speech that Osagyefo Dr.
Kwame Nkrumah, President of the Republic of Ghana, gave to the
Nationalists Conference of African Freedom Fighters in the Ghana' House of
Parliament on June 4, 1962, was all a cluster of gems.
Dr. Nkrumah's classic address covered all aspects of the titanic struggle in
which the forces of African liberation today find themselves locked in mortal
combat with the forces of imperialism, colonialism and neo-colonialism.
On the perennial question of the use of violence in the liberation struggle
Dr. Nkrumah eloquently expressed the viewpoint of all freedom fighters when
he proclaimed that:
"We can endure the exasperation of protracted constitutional devices, calcu-
lated to delay independence and sovereignty.
"We can even submit to the process of the piecemeal granting of freedom to
us, accepting the ridiculous judgment of those who have set themselves up as
umpires of our progress, and who invariably proclaim our unripeness for self-
"But we shall not tolerate the application of violence against us simply be-
cause we demand our freedom."
On the question of the role of the Independent African States in the liberation
struggle Dr. Nkrumah was no less eloquent:
"The instruments of slaughter, the harshness of the repressions, the intensi-
fication of the oppression being brought against Africans as independence ad-
vances over our continent, all thes devices place a heavy obligation upon us
who are independent to move our forces forward and make it plain to the im-
perialists that we are adamant in our purpose to destroy colonialism in Africa.
"We must adopt a positive, all-out anti-colonialist, anti-imperialist attack, and
this quickly for we cannot afford the luxury of delay." Time acts for the ene-
my no less than for ourselves.
The.question of the use of violence in the liberation struggle is today past the
debating stage as witness the course of events in Algeria, Angola, settler South
Africa and the so-called Central African Federation where the colonialists have,
without any provocation on the partof the African people, resorted to brutish
outlandish violence.
The African people would be cowards to continue to take it all lying down
and the Independent African States would also be cowards if they failed to re-
cognise where their duty lies in this matter.
The 1962 Conference of Freedom Fighters will go-down to history as a deci-
sive landmark in the African's march towards the total freedom and indepen-
dence and unity of Africa.
The words with which Dr. Nkrumah closed that momentous conference will
echo and re-echo through the corridors of time:
"Keep aloft, freedom fighters, keep aloft the fighting banner. Africa demands
that we keep on fighting until victory is won. Now is the time to fight. Now is
the time to win. Long live African Independence! Long live African Unity!
Long live African Freedom Fighters!"
August 1962 Bureau of-African Affairs, Accra-

Osagyefo the President, addressing the conference of Freedom Fighters in

Parliament House, Accra, Ghana, on June 4, 1962.


Fellow Freedom Fighters, Comrades and Friends:

IT is my great pleasure to welcome you to Accra and to this
conference of African Freedom Fighters and supporters of the
growing movement for African's liberation and unity. It is good for
our cause to have a periodic meeting of this kind, to examine our
position in the great struggle to rid Africa completely and forever
of imperialism and its hand-maidens, colonialism and neo-colonia-
lism. It gives us the opportunity also to review our strength as well
as that of the enemy, and to reorganise our forces and our strategy
in order to carry the struggle forward to victory.

We have shaped a destiny for ourselves, and no one can alter
the cause of that destiny. It is the destiny of complete freedom for
Africa-the total liberation of our continent and its political
and economic unification.

We have achieved some measure of success in this struggle for
human freedom and dignity, but we still have a great task ahead.
We can only know the extent of our task and our own strength
when we have examined and ascertained that of the enemy.

We are meeting here in Accra to perform precisely such a task
namely, to survey the forces at our disposal, to determine our
position at this time, to assess correctly the enemy's forces and to
plan our strategy and battle tactics for the final phase of the
struggle for Africa's emancipation.

Who is the enemy?

The enemy is imperialism, which uses as its weapons colonialism
and neo-colonialism. Let us be very clear about this. Let us also
not lose sight of the real objective which is the liquidation of colo-
nialism and imperialism in all its form political, economic and
ideological-and the political unification of Africa.

Then we must ask:
What is imperialism and what are the forms it has taken and
what other masks is it likely to put on?

Modern imperialism arose when capitalism had achieved both
industrial and financial monopoly and the competition for raw
materials and markets had made it imperative for the advanced
industrialized countries to expand into the less advanced parts of the
world. This phenomenon led to the partitioning of the world
among the great powers. Asia and Africa were divided up among

Some of us think that because Asia has forced itself free of
colonial control and much of Africa has done so too, the nature of
imperialism has perhaps undergone a kind of change. This thought is
misleading, for the present devices of neo-colonialism and the new
imperialist form that follows in the wake of African independence,
give clear evidence of the continued active operation of imperialism
in Africa

At the end of the First World War, the victorious powers
rearranged their spheres of influence in Africa Re-division of boun-
daries was just as arbitrary as the original frontiers, and imperia-
lism remained as impressive as ever, even though some of the
masters had changed. The thing that has not changed was the
extending arm of finance-capital, which was expanding its mono-
poly in everwidening circles. Trading Corporations had begun to
emerge and soon created themselves into giant monopoly combines.
Great Mining combines were linked up with banking capital in
London, New York, Brussels, Paris and Humburg. All of them
were intently milking Africa's resources, believing that the huge
profits they were making would continue for a long time. How
could they think otherwise, when it was possible to take up 99
years concessions on land and mines almost for nothing?

But one great thing had happened in Europe which was having
and was to continue to have, its repercussions upon subsequent
history throughout the world. That was the October Revolution
of 1917 in Russian, which spread rapidly throughout the Czarist
empire and, overcoming the imperialist intervention, gave birth
in 1922 to the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. Beginning with
four republics, it has risen from a war-torn, undeveloped, largely
agrarian land into a vast union of sixteen national republics,
forming the second largest industrial state of the world.

The most far-reaching outcome of the consolidation of the
Soviet Union was that it removed from the capitalist-imperialist
orbit, one-sixth of the earth's surface. The withdrawal of the
Soviet Union from the capitalist world retired what might well
have become a very profitable sphere of investment for Finance-

There was a renewed fever for colonial expansion, which led
to Mussolini's war on Ethopia and the West's backing 'of Japan's
wars in Korea, Manchuria and China, the spoils of which they
looked forward to sharing. A- reconstructed Germany was also
looking enviously at her former colonies in Africa.

Fellow Freedom Fighters and Friends: the colonial struggle
develops unevenly. It has to press forward wherever it was stron-
gest to create a break in the international imperialist chain. Thus
the breaking of the imperialist chain at certain weak links has un-
dermined the whole of the colonial system in Africa. The indepen-
dent states that have emerged first have acted as a beacon light
for the others, on whose behalf they have been charged with the re-
sponsibility of striking a blow. In this way, African nationalist
thinking has been adjusting to internationalism within the conti-
nent, the developing process that must be lead to the political
unification of Africa.

But the objective of African unity can be seriously undermined
by tribalism, which provides one of the happiest hunting grounds
for the colonialist and neo-colonialist enemies of African indepen-
dence and unity. The Congo is a typical example of how a
country can be turned to the use of imperialist vested interests to
subvert independence and lever off a most valuable part of the
country for continued neo-colonialist exploitation.

In my view, unless we take this problem of tribalism very care-
fully in hand, it can undo all our valiant efforts to bring real inde-
pendence to Africa. We all know the evils of colonialism, but
there are some of us who do not appreciate the malevolent
possibilities for infinite disruption, and even chaos, of uncontrolled
tribalism, which can make havoc of our hopes and aspirations.

We know that the colonialist are past-masters in the
policy of divide and rule. They are quick to seize on tribal diffe-
rences which they discover among us and use these to pit one
group against the other. Soon these superficial differences become
exaggerated into serious political factions which sometimes lead to
tragic fratricidal struggles within the same territory. You who are
in the thick of the struggle in Angola, Mozambique, Portuguese
Guinea and elsewhere know this game, too well. You must guard
against it; guard against it by forging a common united front
against the enemy. The dangers it opens up and the manipulations
to which it can be put are too numerous and too threatening for
us to ignore its urgent demand for critical and constructive atten-
tion. Failure in this task would only risk all the effort and sacrifices
that we have made so far in our common cause and
place in utter jeopardy the future peace and development of

this continent. I therefore charge you to place it high on your
agenda and give it your most thoughtful and creative consideration.

Colonial rule has left a high degree of illiteracy among our
people, and we all know that in conditions of ignorance
and superstition, it is easy enough to fan internecine feuds.
This menace can be met by inity among the leaders and the
creation of a nation-wide, firmly knit political organisation,
receiving the most complete loyalty and devoted service
from all its members, especially its officers and organising officials
in the field. But it is imperative for the problem to be seized and
dealt with, and for everyone of us to be on our guard against its
creeping insinuations and menacing possibilities.

Colonial rule has also left the masses of our people poverty-
striken and disease-ridden, while enormous quantities of mineral
and agriculture wealth were drained out of Africa year in and year
out. From the labours of our people, vast profits have been wrung
for industrial and financial monopolies. In the Portuguese colonies,
in the Belgian Congo, in the Union of South, Africa, in the
Rhodesias, Nyasaland, Kenya and other settler areas forced
labour and slave conditions are the lot of millions of Africans,
whose lands have been expropriated and who have been forced out
to work by the simple device of imposing hut and pool taxes and
bending the customary traditions of communal service to the
needs of settler farmers, mining companies, and land con-
cessionaires. Legislation has turned many millions of Africans into
helots in their own land. It will take all the tricks of expurgation
and the greatest manipulation of truth ever fashioned to wipe out
of the page of history the dreadful things and mon-
strous wrongs that have been inflicted on our people by those
who came here, so they said, to bring their civilising mission to
this, vast and great continent. There is not one of us who has
not, in a minor or major degree felt the oppressive heel of colonial
rule. I am not making this point merely in order to harrow you with
ugly memories. Many of you have been confronted only too
recently with the shocking actualities of calculated oppression to
be able at this moment to push them out of your mind. I raise the
point so that it will stay in your minds when you may be tempted
by the seductive promises of neo-colonialism to forget the real
character of colonialist-imperialism, and be persuaded away from
your own true interests and those of Africa.

For to-day we must each see ourselves as part of Africa in order
that we may face colonialist-imperialism and its new form, neo-
colonialism, on a continental-wide front. When the first All African
People's Conference met here in Accra in December 1958, I
pointed out that: "Our deliberations must be conducted in accord

and our resolution must flow out of unity. For unity must be the
keynote of our actions. Our enemies are many and they stand
ready to pounce upon and exploit our every weakness. They tell
us that this particular person orthat particular country has greater
or more favourable potentialities than the other. They do not tell
us that we should unite, that we are all as good as we are able
to make ourselves once we are free. Remember always that you
have four stages to make :-
(1) the attainment of freedom and independence
(2) the consolidation of that freedom and independence
(3) the creation of unity and community between
the African States;
(4) the economic and social reconstruction of Africa"

What has happened since in no way invalidates these assump-
tions. In the face of recent and present events, they have, a greater
urgency than ever. When the first conference of independent
African states assembled in Accra in April 1958, there were eight
independent African states. Today, we have increased our number
to nearly thirty, with more on the way; but the problems which
plague us then still remain: how to maintain the hard-worn inde-
pendence of those of us who are free and, at the same time, assist
the burning struggle of our brothers still fighting for their indepen-
dence on this continent. The answer, too, is the same. We must
unify ourselves in policy and in action, both between all of us who
are independent, and between the independent states and the still
unliberated millions of this continent.

We have, it is true, recorded in the pages of contemporary
history, signal success in the continuing struggle for human
freedom and dignity. But there still remains the gigantic task
ahead of redeeming from the grinding heel of colonialist-
imperialism the -parts of Africa still under its yoke. Africa is
for Africans and unless those within our gates can accept the rule
of the majority, they must either pick themselves up and go or
be forced to surrender to our just demands.

We do not, for instance, accept the South African argument that
the land it occupies was no man's land when the first settlers
came and met it unoccupied. This is Africa and the land they
settled upon is African land belonging to Africans whether they
were there or not upon the settlers' arrival. Africa is not an exten-
sion of Europe and if Europeans want to develop a separate nation,
then they must find a place on their own continent to do so. They
cannot expect to remain here, to live upon and lord it over an

African majority in a master-slavd relationship that deprives our
fellow Africars in the South of ev&ry human right and dignity.

Nor do we. countenance the Central African Federation, forced
upon seven million Africans for the benefit of three hundred thou-
sand Europeans, determined to extend the arrogant assumptions of
racial superiority over even wider stretches of our continent. We
have no time for platitudes about partnership and the perversions of
multi-racial societies that aim at continuing a jack-boot system
which will keep Africans at the hewer-of-wood and drawer-of-water

We are equally opposed to the sham constitutions that are
being foisted on Swaziland and Bechuanaland, the British protecto-
rate enclaves in South Africa, which are nothing but a sop to the
popular demand of democratic government in preparation for
independence. The 'traditional elements are being favoured as
administrative instruments for the obstruction of progress to full
independence. In Basutoland, the third British protectorate in
South Africa, the intent is apparent in the neglect to transfer
any kind of power to the people. It is easy to understand that the
South Africa Union could not tolerate three completely independent
African States within the very borders of what she claims to be her

The hurricane of change that is raging through Africa and razing
to the ground many of the bastions of colonialism, is a warning
that we Africans mean to be masters on our own continent. But we
should be doing ourselves a great disservice if we were to sink into
smug complacency and take it for granted that time is all on our
side and that, because history is with us, the total independence of
Africa will fall into our hands like a ripe mango. This is decidedly
not to the case. The forces arrayed against us are-and I use the
word most carefully-formidable. They are entrenched and power-
ful. They are, as I have taken some pains to explain, the forces of
imperialism acting through their instruments, colonialism and neo-
colonialism, ably assisted by the agents of the cold-war. They
operate in world-wide combinations at all levels: polical, economic,
military, cultural, educational, social and trade; and through intel-
ligence cultural and information services. They operate from
European and African centres, using agents who, I am ashamed to
say, are often unpatriotic sons of.Africa, buying personal satisfac-
tions with the betrayal of their countries safety and integrity. They
seduce leaders of the African political, trade union and people's
organizations, thus creating rifts and quarrels with the national

On the broader fronts, they are massing their forces in a deter-

mined effort to stay the advance of African liberation and the.
march to unity. It is not accidental that the, countries of the
European Common Market are those spearheading the North Atlan.
tic Treaty Organisation, the imperialist powers who have brought
in their vassals, Spain and Portugal. Portugal has, in fact, since the
war of the Spanish succession, 1700-1714 been a protectorate of
Britain, which has enjoyed special trading and concessionary rights
in both Portugal and the Portuguese territories for over two hund-
red years. It is not difficult to understand, therefore, why Britain has
not raised her voice against the atrocities in Angola and the other
Portuguese territories, and actually supported Portugal's preposte-
rous claim that Goa, in India, was an integral part of the metro-
politan country.

The arms and troops that are pouring into Angola cannot be
regarded in isolation from the international organisation of
imperialism and the cold war militarism with which they are most
definitely linked. It is absurd to think that Portugal, one of the
poorest countries in Europe, could support so large an army so
well equipped as that which is defending her colonial possessions
in Africa without the active aid she must be receiving from the
North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.

Nor can we look upon the way in which South Africa is busily
building up an armed force equal to any held by the nations of
Europe without scenting the international implications that are
obviously involved. She has, we hear, a secret military pact with
Portugal. And the interlocking imperialist interests collected in
Congo and the Rhodesias, Angola and Mozambique, which are
also linked with the great mining and financial combines opera-
ting in South Africa, create a chain of allies which seriously
threatens both the fight for extending African emancipation from
colonialism and the independence of the new states.

Now that African independence has been achieved over a large
part of the continent and the national consciousness of Africans
from north to south, from east to west, is adding momentum to
the struggle for independence, every kind of means is being used
by the colonialists to arrest its progress and defeat its objective.
They are attempting many methods, some sinister, some beguil-
ing, to wreck our efforts. They strike antipathetic postures. On
-one side, they perform acts calculated to strike fear, on the other,
they try to hoodwink us with fictitious gifts which superficially
pander to our hopes and aspirations. They are the frenzied
attempts to deflect our purpose, to weaken our determination.

Of late, atrocities of the worst possible kind have been perpe-
trated against Africans. The horror of Portuguese atrocities

appals all right-minded: .people. The massacres at Dembos,
Golungo. Alto, Ambaco. Dondo,, Cacuso, Libolo and others, will
be t6 the eternal shame of the present regime.. Troops drafted into:
Baxie de Cassange to shoot down Africans demonstrating against
abusive practices, killed over eight thousand innocent people.
Planes bombed unarmed, defenceless men and women. The Por-
tuguese record in Angola, in Mozambigue, Guinea, Sao Tome
and Principe is a long, repetitive story of murder, robbery, and
active persecution of Africans, The intensity of the new repression
is illustrated by the recent flight of more than eighty thousand
persons into the Congo.

On the other hand, it is interesting to note the latest solicitude
of those responsible for the Sharpeville massacre for the "na-
tional rights" of a South African tribe singled out for the favour
of racial independence, as the settler rulers of the Union are
pleased to call it. This segregated government by chiefs of the
Pondoland tribe within its circumscribed reserve makes a pitiful
mockery not only of the meaning of freedom but of the dignity
of the Africans compelled to accept this travesty of independence.
It is difficult to believe that world opinion will be hoodwinked by
what is nothing more than a thinly disguised trick to prove that
South Africa is not against African freedom within segregation;
but that she is only against African independence that assure
the democratic right of indigenous majority to rule an
alien minority. In any event, it is an extraordinary division of
independence which could only have been devised by a people too
blind to see its impossibility against the actualities of mid-twen-
tieth century developments both political, industrial, economic
and social. The theory that a minority of settlers can continue
to subjugate, to dominate, rob and enslave millions of Africans
has no reality in our. present world of expanding nationalism
and more and more technical means of production. And the idea
that the Union can continue to exist within its own frontiers for
any length of time on the output of extractive industries, plan-
tation farming and a ramshackle industrial machine, run by
near-slave labour, is very much open to question.

It must again urge the United Nations to see to it that its own
declaration on the liquidation of colonialism is given practical
effect without further delay. So long as colonialism exists in
Africa, Africans cannot help talking the way we .do now, and
mankind cannot escape the constant threat of war. Africa
therefore appeals to the United Nations to live up to its reputa-
tion as the greatest bastion of world peace, and demands that a
meeting of this year's United Nations session should be devoted
to the problem of colonialism in Africa. Furthermore, the United
Nations should make a firm declaration calling upon the Colonial

Powers to quit Africa by the 31st December 1962. The freedom
fighters assembled in this historic conference must also call
upon all the Colonial Powers to withdraw from Africa by the
same date. It is in their interest and in the interest of world peace
that this should be so.

It is folly for the colonialists to think that they can hold back
forever the progress of history. The process of change is inherent in
the interplay of social, economic and political forces. It is true that
these can be hindered and impeded, and even bent to different
purposes: but not forever. However, we who are concerned with the
immediacy of African independence and unity, are not prepared to
wait upon the evolution of history. We are determined to give his-
tory a revolutionary push, or if I may boast a little, to push rather
harder the revolutionary wheel that we freedom fighters have al-
ready turned a considerable way across Africa.

The instruments of slaughter, the harshness of the repressions,
the intensification of the oppression being brought against Africans
as independence advances over our continent, all these devices
place a heavy obligation upon us who are independent to move our
forces forward and make it plain to the colonialists and imperialists
that we are adamant in our purpose to destroy colonialism in Africa.
No lukewarm approach will avail. We must bring all our bat-
talions into array to match the skill of our enemy. We must adopt
a positive all-out anti-colonialists, anti-imperialist attack, and this
quickly, for we cannot afford the luxury of delay. Time acts for the
enemy no less than for ourselves.

Let us, therefore, examine our position seriously and objectively,
to see how well we have managed so far, and evaluate our points
of weakness and the necessary remedies. Let us determine what
modifications are needed to adjust our strategy to counter the
movements of the enemy and overcome him.

This requires some plain speaking, and for the sake of Africa,
let us speak plainly.

As I see it, our greatest danger stems from disunity and the
inability to see that the realisation of our hopes and aspirations,
the realisation of our objective of total African independence, and
of our future progress and prosperity, is inextricably bound up with
the necessity to unify our policy and actions in connection with
the continuing struggle for independence and the greater task
of economic and social reconstruction beyond it.

We need unity within the ranks of the independent states, unity

within the ranks of the freedom fighters still struggling to achieve
independence; and unity between the already independent states
and the freedom fighters.

I do not think that too much stress can ever be laid upon this
need for unity. It is our unity that the imperialist agencies are try-
ing by every means to obstruct and sever. It is the idea of African
Unity that they fear most. It seems only intelligent, therefore, for
us to close our ranks and compact our forces.

If we independent states were unified in a political and economic
union, having a common foreign and defence policy, controlling
a unified military command, we should be in a much stronger posi-
tion to assist the territories still struggling for independence. An
over-all economic plan, covering an Africa united on a continental
basis, must increase our total industrial and economic power;
hence, our combined strength, reinforced by a common purpose
would add enormously to the united front which we could turn
against the enemy. So long as we remain disunited, so long as we
remain balkanised, whether regionally or in separate national units,
we shall be at the mercy of imperialism and neo-colonialism.

We must therefore face the issue of African Unity now; for only
unity will make the artificial boundaries and regional demarcations
imposed by colonialism obsolete and superfluous. African Unity will
thus provide an effective remedy for border disputes and internecine
troubles. In a united Africa there would be no frontier claims be-
tween Ethiopia and Somalia or between Zanzibar and Kenya,
Guinea and Liberia or between Ghana, Togoland and the Ivory
Coast, because we would regard ourselves as one great continental
family of Nations.

Among the new states in Africa are some which, through
fragmentation, have been left so weak economically, that they are
unable to stand on their own feet. This is the result of a
deliberate policy, of the withdrawing colonial powers, who have
created in Africa several small, feeble and unstable and unenviable
states, in the hope of ensuring their continued dependence upon
the former colonial power for economic and technical aid. Indeed,
the intention goes farther than that, and is more insidious. It is to
produce a political atmosphere as dangerous to the safety and
progress of African independence as that which followed the
establishment of the many friable nations which were created in
Eastern Europe by the Congress of Vienna (1814-1815). The under-
lying design is to induce national jealousies and rivalries such as
nourished the outbreak of the First World War. At best, it is
hoped that such a policy may lead to open conflict. At worst, it

must present tough obstacles to the movement for total African
freedom and African unity. This is the inner plan of neo-colonia-
lism, the latest instrument of imperialism. While relinquishing
political rule it contrives to control the foreign and internal policy
of the states it still dominates through the bestowal of material aid.

In effect, only the outward forms have changed, but the sub-
stance of colonialism remains. Foreign import are still protected,
local development is clamped down, social progress is retarded, and
fiscal policy is controlled from the metropolitan capital. The
impact of these semi-indedendent states on the liberation of Africa
is calamitous. Bound up as they are with the policies of their
sponsors, they are unable to take a determined, independent line on
issues involving the colonialists and the still enslaved peoples on
this continent. Some of the leaders, it must be confessed, do not see
the struggle of their brother Africans as part of their own struggle.
Even if they did, they would not be free to express their solidarity.
Thus rifts are consciously created by the imperialists between
Africans, which they can sit back and watch with sly satisfaction,
as well as contempt for those who fail to see how they are being
used against Africa's best interests. Regrettably, those states
include some who were among the freedom fighters of yesterday
and who, having won their independence, are willing to drop it for
some token aid, and thereby deny to those still struggling for free-
dom even their moral support. Here is a phenomenon against
which all African freedom fighters must be on their guard and
resist to the utmost.

Even though I appreciate the difficulties facing us, I must admit
I find it strange to watch some of us returning willingly to the
colonialist fold. This time they don't even have the excuse of
being forced to subject themselves to foreign domination. It makes
one wonder why so much effort and sacrifice, and so many lives
were given up to the achievement of independence in the first place
if it can be so quickly and easily surrendered. Unhappy for us,
colonialism creates in some, intellectual allegiance which are
not severed at the moment of independence, but remain to
condition loyalties away from Africa towards the metropolis
which draws them. They are unable, it would appear, to
accept the idea that Africans can get together to make a viable
and going concern of combined African continent, but rather see
their salvation in coming together in associations like the
Franco-African Community mooted recently at Bangui.

Although there are many here who speak English, French,
Spanish or Portuguese, nevertheless, we are all African Africans
fighting for Africa's independence, Africa's unity, Africa's

I have said that I understand the difficulties of these states which
are drawing away from the African community back into
that of Europe. Faced with the demands of their people for
rising standards of living and better social conditions, but
charged with economies that can hardly meet the recurrent
expenses of administration and maintenance, they are in a dilemma.
And standing at their elbows are the neo-colonialist agents,
beckoning them back with a smile into the web of imperialism,
though it may have a new look this time and offer the irresistible
bait of immediate help. But this help will be far outweighed, as
they will experience with no great loss of time, by the knots into
which their economies will be tied by the Euro-African association.
Imperialism does not change its nature; it only changes its front.
It still needs colonial appendages, whether in name or in fact,
to exploit and, at the same time, to support its cold war strategy.

In the face of the serious threat to our economy and indepen-
dence in Africa, we must begin to build immediately our own con-
tinental Common Market, for it is easy for anyone who studies
the Common Market Organisation closely to realize that the
Common Market is aimed at harnessing the African countries to
satisfy the profit-lust of the imperialist bloc and to prevent us
from following an independent neutralist policy. It is also easy
to see that the imperialists and colonialists are determined to
retain the African countries in the position of suppliers of cheap
raw material.

If we do not resist threat, and if we throw in our lot with the
Common Market, we shall doom the economy of Africa to a
state of perpetual subjection to the economy of western Europe.
This will, of course, hinder the industrialisation of our young
African states. It is impossible to think of economic develop-
ment and national independence without possessing an unfet-
tered capacity for maintaining a strong industrial power. The
activities of the Common Market are therefore fraught with
dangerous political and economic consequences for the indepen-
dent African States. The organisation constitutes an attempt to
replace the old system of colonial exploitation by a new system
of collective colonialism which will be 'stronger and more
dangerous than the old evils we are striving to liquidate from
our continent.

There is an alternative to the Euro-African association,
with its deadly implications for Africa's independence and
progress. It is in an African Economic Community, in which
we can all pool our production and our trade, to the common
advantage. It is not difficult to imagine that the neo-colonia-
lists will describe this as a pooling of poverty. It is, however,

too simple a distortion of fact. Africa is rich and not poor, as
the great wealth that has been taken out of our continent
over five centuries of despoliation and extortion very well proves.
Africa has immense actual and potential wealth. Gold, diamonds,
copper, manganese, bauxite, iron ore, uranium, asbestos, chrome,.
cobalt, a host of other minerals, our essential agricultural produce,
have all been drained away by colonialist-imperialism. Africa
is far from being poor. It is the Africans who are poor, because
of the uncounted profit that has been made out of the exploi-
tation of their labour and their lands. If we are being baited
to enter a European Community, we must have something
that community needs-and needs badly, when' it pretends to
offer a bonus by way of aid. When Greeks come bearing gifts,
should we not look them well in the mouth, if I may mix
my metaphor? But I am sure you get my meaning. When we
new, untried, inexperienced states are flattered into European
alliances, we enter not as equals, but as suppliers of primary
products at the generosity of industrial converters. How gene-
rous they can be, we have learned from our sad experience over a
good long time. Who fixes prices? Who can play off one against
the other by allowing the goods of associates in free of tariff and
placing a tariff on others? As long as it is possible to deal
with us singly, we are at the mercy of the imperialists rather than
their generosity. And we shall find ourselves in the same old cleft
stick of receiving the lowest possible prices for our raw materials,
while those of us who are obliged to buy their manufac-
tured goods, because of being members of their associations,
will pay for them through the nose. These same states will
find themselves tied up in knots which will prevent their
going into an open market for their needs of goods and capital
investment. And, above all, they will lose their option of
non-alignment and find themselves dragged into the diplomacy
of imperialist cold war politics which will operate against the
independence and intrinsic interests of Africa. Those of us
who cannot see through these implications can only be
suffering from an intense myopia.

Within our African Community, our pooled production will
place us in a position to bargain for higher prices, and so secure
greater revenues, out of which we can invest in our development. At
the same time, we can trade freely among ourselves and buy from
overseas in the cheapest markets. We can turn for aid to those
sources which will give us the most suitable terms while leaving us
free to follow our own internal and external policy. But more even
than this narrow co-operation, we need the wider continental
economic plan, which will allow us, within unity, to exploit Africa's
tremendous resources for our common welfare and greater African
development and progress.

If we are really sincere in our desire to see the end of imperialism
in Africa, then, apart even from the considerations involved in Afri-
can unity, we should turn away from any form of association with
Europe which, through its neo-colonialist control of our policies,
Swill help rather to sustain that imperialism that undermines it. It is
bad enough that our economies, as a legacy of colonial rule, are
imperialist-controlled, and that we have to strive by every means to
rid ourselves of this economic imperialism and secure our develop-
ment and progress on solid African foundations. This is another
reason why we should come together in a unified African economic
plan, which, operating on a continental scale, can make a solid
attack on imperialist domination in Africa.

We should, without delay, aim at the creation of a joint African
military command. There is little wisdom in our present separate
efforts to build up and maintain defence forces which, in any case,
would be ineffective in any major conflict. If we examine this
problem realistically, we would ask, which single African state
could protect itself against an imperialist aggressor? And how
much more difficult this will be when some states are allowing the
imperialists to maintain bases on their territories? I have already
referred to the military force which South Africa is raising and the
danger it poses for the new African states and the struggle of those
still in chains. Only our unity can provide us with anything like
adequate protection. If we do not unite and combine our military
forces, South Africa, along with her allies, or any other colonialist-
imperialist power, can pick us off one by one. Not only that: some
of us out of a sense of insecurity, may be drawn into making
defence pacts with the imperialists which will endanger the security
of all of us.

It follows that if we set up in Africa a common economic plan-
ning organisation and a joint military command, w. shall have to
work out and adopt a common foreign policy to give political
direction to our continental development and our continental

Fellow Freedom Fighters, you may perhaps wonder why I have
dwelt at some length with these problems of the unity of indepen-
dent African States and what relevance they have to your imme-
diate problems of how to overcome the obstacles standing in the
way of your own struggle for independence. I think I have answered
any such questions by pointing out the dangers to the whole
subject of your fight for freedom in the fragmentary state of Africa
at this present time. Moreover, the moment you have achieved
independence, you will be faced with the practical problems of
protecting that independence and securing your viability in order to
lay. the foundations on which to build up economic and social

development. You must know where you are going, what avenues
of support await you, which will contribute to your real consolida-
tion and protection and meet the problems that will confront you.

Those problems can best be met within a unified Africa, and it
should be possible, in the higher reaches of our endeavour, to
devise a constitutional structure which will secure the objectives I
have outlined and yet preserve the sovereignty of each of the
countries joining the union. Countries within the union will
naturally maintain their own constitutions and continue to use
their national emblems and national anthems and other symbols
and paraphernalia of sovereignty.

Regional associations and territorial groupings can only be
other forms of balkanisation unless they are conceived within the
framework of continental union. There are existing models which
we can modify or adapt into our pattern. The United States of
America, the Soviet Union, India and China have proved the
efficacy of unions embracing large stretches of land and population.
When the first thirteen states of America tried to promote the idea
of a United States, this was ridiculed as an empty dream and
vigorously resisted by many. Today, America is the foremost
industrial country in the world, and the states within her union
now number fifty. And who would have thought that almost a
hundred different peoples at various levels of economic, social and
political development could have been welded into the mighty state
which the Soviet Union has come in such a short space of time?

The example of Europe, which is left in confusion after centuries
of competition, because it failed to build a sound foundation for
common political action and understanding, should be a lesson for
us all. But with the exigencies created by the shrinking of empires,
the growing socialist world and the needs generated by the greater
productive capacities inherent in present-day techniques, even
Europe is now beginning to seek its common associations. It is
paradoxical, therefore, that some African states should be turning
away from their proper African affiliations to those of another
continent. Rather we should all be working ceaselessly to bring to
fruition the fond hope of African unity to which we all give lip
service and to which most of us are resolutely dedicated.

Let me here say a few words about the said development
in what looked like a hopeful move towards the unity of the
Caribbean islands. We regard West Indians as our brothers,
for they have strong ties of kinship with us here in Africa. They,
like us, have suffered and are still suffering the iniquities of colonial
oppressions. I think it is only right that we should show
concern over any development which tends to undermine their

solidarity and progress, and we have indeed been saddened by the
failure of the attempt at federation. How can these little islands
hope to stand by themselves in the future any better than they
have done in the past.

When the trend is towards the creation of bigger units of
economy viability, it is most distressing to find that some of
our brothers across the Atlantic seem to be unaware of the
vital need of the widest possible federation, drawn together by
a central government with sufficient powers to make the principle
of unified progress a working possibility. It would be tragic,
not only for West Indies, but also for Africans and other
people of African descent, if the Islands of the West Indies
were to remain apart. For we have reposed so much hope and
faith in the emergence of Caribbean Isles as united states, free
and progressive, federated in strength and purpose and contri-
buting substantially to the total success of all our peoples.
I hope that West Indian leaders, who are men of learning and
progress, will see the folly and danger of this disunited deve-
lopment and arrest the process for the good of all concerned.

Here in Africa, the increasing activity of freedom fighters
all over the continent is one of the most hopeful signs of the
victory that must crown our efforts. Many have lost their lives.
Many -far too many-have been down. Let their sacrifices
spur us on to ever greater effect, to add to the great achie-
vements that have already marked our struggle.

Let us now stand in silence for one minute in homage to
those who have fallen in the battle for Africa's freedom.

After seven long years, the French Government has made a
standstill agreement with our Algerian brothers, and we pay
our tribute to the heroes of the Algerian Liberation Front.
Many thousands have died in order that a true and progres-
sive Algeria might live. The great self-restraint which the people
of Algerian have in the face of extreme provocation by the
European Secret Army Organisation-the O.A.S.-is evidence of
their national maturity and balanced political judgment. The
obvious objective of these attacks is to nullify the Evian
Agreement by inciting the Algerian people to hit back en
masse and create sympathy for the O.A.S. cease. It is
reassuring that the Algerian people, by and large, have remained
calm in the face of extreme and wanton provocation, thus
defeating the main purpose of the vengeful attacks of the O.A.S.

It is, however, becoming increasingly questionable whether the
truce, in face of the obvious inability, or perhaps we might call

it refusal, of the French to deal effectively with the subver-
sive actions of the counter-revolutionary organisation in Algeria,
can continue. To the Algerian Provisional Government we
extend our esteem of the high sense of leadership they have
exhibited before the temptations of retaliatory action, and
assure them once again that all true and genuine sons of
Africa stand resolutely by them in any course of action they
may take to ensure the final victory of an utterly indepen-
dent Algeria.

The gains that the freedom fight in Africa has made in a
few years are astounding. No one would ever have believed
that country after country could so rapidly have gained their
independence. Not long ago not yet ten years away -
certain African leaders were still shy even of using the word
"independence". They talked about "decolonisation", about
"self-government", about '*self-determination", etc., etc. In fact,
it was only at the Cotonou Conference of the P.R.A. in August,
1958, that the word "independence" came out into the open in
French West and Equitorial Africa. And even then, certain leaders
tried to soft-pedal it as though it were indecent to give it
forthright expression.

Popular pressure in the African lands is determining the
question of independence, as it will determine African unity.

Unfortunately, some of our leaders are eagerly attempting to
demonstrate their affinity with the European cultures and phi-
losophies, from which they insist they can cut off only with
harmful results to our African destiny.

Africa's interests are in Africa. That is why below the leader-
ship throughout the independent states and within the freedom
struggle that is going on in the unliberated parts of the conti-
nent, there is a surge towards unity which, if properly guided,
can bring about the desired objective. The slogan of African
unity is today on every lip. But there are those who have it
only on their lips as a means of concealing their links with foreign
interests and to hoodwink the millions of African workers and
peasants who look eagerly forward to an upward change in
their poverty-stricken lives.

It is doubtful whether this facade can long deceive the people,
for it breaks faith with them. And, after all, if the principle
is maintained that sovereignty is rooted in the people, they
must use this sovereignty to secure governments wedded to
Africa's true interests in genuine independence. Freedom

fighters of Africa must therefore closely watch the unfolding
scene of African independence and development and make
sure that no government shall deceive the rightful aspirations
of the people and remain in power. Imperialist plans must be
frustrated by making it impossible for neo-colonialism to
recruit agents and retain them in the seats of power. This
is no small task, but it is a task which we must tackle
in the supreme interest of Africa. It is part and parcel of the
greater task of achieving Africa's total independence and unifi-
cation, the plan for the winning of which we are here to

In the prosecution of this task, we must endeavour to
eliminate all those trends that will hamper our victory, and
number and enlist all those forces that can support and
join our struggle for colonialism's final overthrow in Africa.
Some of these I have already dealt with; others I shall be
coming to. First of all, we must recognize and acknowledge that
our struggle is in Africa and that the brunt must fall upon us
Africans. After all it is our struggle, a struggle against the strongest
combination of forces the world has ever seen: twentieth cen-
tury imperialism in the epoch of the cold war. Despite their
outward expressions of sympathy and understanding, we must
discount any likelihood of real help in our struggle from the
interest powers. They are, as we know, busily carrying on their
neo-colonialist intrigues behind their hypocritical protestations.
Against this, we can counter the expansion of the non-aligned
states, whose pressure at the United Nations has secured a
certain response to the demand for an examination of the slave
conditions in the Portuguese and South-west African territories
and in Ruanda Urundi and the Central African Federation.

While we cannot rely entirely upon United Nations action as a
determining factor in the struggle, yet as we intensify our activities,
the organisation can be utilised as an increasingly effective deter-
rent in connection with the more outrageous forms of colonial
oppression. Whether we shall ever be able to secure its intervention
actively on the side of the struggle in the event of open attack from
the heavily armed colonial powers, will depend very much upon
the unity of policy and action between the African states, and the
support they can mobilise in the Security Council.

Though, as I say, we do not look for help among the imperialist
governments in the struggle for independence and unity, yet there
are many people within their countries whose sympathy and moral
support we know we have. I know that freedom fighters have
also received their active and material help in a number of ways.

But as these friends cannot influence their governments, there is no
possibility of our depending upon them to move their support to the
battleground of Africa. However, we must not overlook the
struggle which some sections of the European working class and
intelligentsia are bringing out into the open against colonial
governments in Africa. Here there is a definite link between our
struggle and against the metropolitan, colonial governments, Both
struggles are aimed at the same target: the destruction of colonia-
lism and repressive administration. The simultaneous assault in the
colonies and the metropolis helps to weaken the colonial power
through the division of the forces it must deploy at both ends. It is
possible that our struggles could be joined, on the absolutely clear
and accepted understanding that we shall brook no interference
with our right to independence.

Our other forces are within Africa, and they are within the
independent states and the remaining colonial territories. They
reside in the peoples and their organizations. They are in the trade
unions, the farmers and peasants associations, the co-operatives, the
youth movements, the women's organizations, the political parties;
in fact, in every unit of nationalist endeavour.

The farmers of Africa have initiated their continental union,
which joins not only members from the independent countries but
also from the still dependent territories. We cannot keep fighting
on empty stomachs and our farmers have a great duty to keep us
reasonably fed for the struggle. Their wisdom in coming together
to form a union of African farmers gives hope and confidence to all
of us that a significant step has been taken in African unity.

The African trade unions have a particularly pressing responsi-
bility to discard anti-quated ideas about the separation of trade
union activities from politics, and to constitute themselves into an
active vanguard in our political operations. Credit, therefore, must
go to those who have joined the All-African Trades Union Federa-
tion-the A.A.T.U.F. It is time for Africa to have her own
independent, continental trade union apex body, which will owe
allegiance to Africa's struggle for independence and economic and
social reconstruction. The International Confederation of Free
Trade Unions (the I.C.F.T.U.) represents the ideology of the
capitalist countries. The World Federation of Trade Unions (the
W.F.T.U.) represents the ideology of the socialist countries. We in
Africa, who are committed to a policy of non-alignment, can only
steer clear of extra-African entanglements by raising our own
continental trade union organisation with its own ideology and
freedom from external pressures. The I.C.F.T.U. has been at con-
siderable pains and gone to considerable expense to infiltrate the
African trade union movement and to seduce African trade union

leaders away from an African stand and viewpoint. Within the
context of the anti-colonial struggle, the very organisation of a trade
union is a political act, as those who remember the history of the
Chartist movement in England will understand. And in the tasks of
reconstruction after the attainment of independence, they have a
special role to play in rallying the working class around a pro-
gramme aimed at raising the standard of life of the mass of people.
Where the government is a popular government, the African trade
union movement is identified with the government's programme,
and thereby becomes its ally securing its implementation. The trade
union movement in Africa has already proved itself in the indepen-
dence struggle, and our All-African Trades Union Federation can
be of inestimable aid in pushing these last stages to final victory. Its
job is to cement the bonds of solidarity and union between the
workers in all the territories and give its active support against the
brutal exploitation of our comrades in the dependent territories.

One of the remarkable phenomena of our times is the way in
which the colonial youth and women have accepted the challenge
of the independence struggle and play their active part in it. All the
way through the Algerian war, during our own militant. activities
here in Ghana, and as far as I can judge, in all the territories where
the fight has erupted into an open battle, whether short or prolonged,
our young people and women have aided their fathers and brothers,
their husbands and sons in all manner of ways. They have acted as
messengers, as sentries, as watchdogs, as providers and purveyors
of food and succour. They have even acted as spurs to push their
hesitant menfolk into the thick of the struggle.

Today, our youth organizations are interpreting their enthusiasm
and aspirations into activities which support the fight for freedom
and unity in Africa. Always the most oppressed, the slavery and
misery of colonial oppression stung our African women into action,
and they still remain in the front line of the battle in ever-increas-
ing numbers. Here in Ghana, women played a most important part
in the attainment of independence. They are now seriously engaged
in our national reconstruction, and are dedicated to the cause of
African unity. African womanhood in general is dedicated to the
cause of liberation from colonialism, and freedom fighters should
do everything to encourage our women to bring their effective
efforts to the cause.

Fellow freedom fighters, we have told the world in clear terms,
at every conceivable opportunity, that Africa has a vested
interest in peace. We sincerely believe that others also cherish a
similar interest in peace and that generally the world abhors
violence. We must make it crystal clear, however, that we do not

subscribe to the principle of peace at any price. It is true that we
are prepared to pay an unbelievably high price for peace, but it is
not true that we would pay any price for peace. We recognize the
dangers of war implicit in the chain of events on this continent
which has brought a high degree of armament to West, Central
and South Africa, and which are linked with our struggle for
independence and unity. Yet we are not prepared to retreat from
the struggle one inch. On the contrary, we are firmer than ever in
our determination to carry it forward to a triumphant conclusion,
whatever the cost. For we are resolved that this continent shall
not continue half-free, half-slave, not only because the indepen-
dence of our states is threatened so long as a single colonial
territory remains, but because we must help to win for our brothers
their inalienable right to determine their own destiny. Moreover,
the liquidation of imperialist-colonialism in Africa is in itself a
profound act of peace, while the unity of this continent will con-
stitute a great bulwark for the positive stabilisation of world amity
and concord. For it will eliminate those cause of conflict tied up
in the scramble for spheres of influence, and controlled sources of
raw materials and markets.

We can endure the exasperation of protracted constitutional
devices, calculated to delay independence and sovereignty. We can
even submit to the process of the piecemeal granting of freedom to
us, accepting the ridiculous judgment of those who have set them-
selves up as umpires of our progress, and who invariably proclaim
our unripeness for self-government. But we shall not tolerate the
application of violence against us simply because we demand our
freedom. There are several effective ways in which we shall resist,
and these we shall discuss and resolve. But I want to make it quite
clear that the aggressors are the imperialist-colonialists, first
because they are the alienators of our lands to which we do not
admit their right, whatever they may determine among themselves;
and second, because they are the prime users of force, and if their
international law was objective and not framed simply to legalise
their loot, there would be no need for it. We are not out to take
what is not ours, but we have a perfect right to fight for the birth-
right of freedom and the ownership of our land that has been
filched from us and is being illegally withheld.

Inasmuch as our struggle for independence and our subsequent
national and continental development is bound up with the
question of peace, since our very survival hangs upon the decisions
of the great nations, we once more put forward our appeal to them.
Immeasurable quantities of money, not to talk of the futile waste of
energy, brains and productive capacity, are put into the manu-
facture and explosion of the most lethal weapons of destruction
that man has ever bent his ingenuity to devise. It is a fair comment

on the state of Western civilisation that this should be regarded as
its highest pinnacle of achievement, while millions of the world's
populations in Asia and Africa, yes, even in Europe and America,
exist on the fringe of bare subsistence. We still call upon the
powers who hold the fate of mankind in their hands, to turn away
from the production of these appalling means of mass destruction
and to devote to peaceful uses the harnessed power of the atom.
How excellent it would be if, instead of preparing for the destruction
of mankind, one barest part of the means financing it, could be
used in the rapid development of the less developed parts of the
world, and thus destroy colonialist-imperialism forever. It is a sad
reflection on the leadership of these nations that they should have
within their reach the power for doing good and yet refuse to
adjust themselves to the opportunity of making effective their
ability for doing this good. I hope that before long sanity may
prevail and that mankind will receive the benefits of the uncount-
able wealth now being catapulted into the ,atmosphere.

The question of peace, particularly as it affects African indepen-
dence and development has relation to the United Nations, the
great world organisation which, despite all its shortcomings, is
the international respository of the world hopes. Some time
ago this organisation showed such nervousness in the imple-
mentation of its own decisions and resolutions over the
Congo that the small nations began to wonder whether it
could be effective in their protection and if confidence should
be. reposed in it. Its vacillations caused the death of one of
our bravest fighters our brother Patrice Lumumba.

The Congo is perhaps one of the most, glaring examples of
how the neo-colonialists use the most machiavellian means
to continue their imperialist depredations, by turning to their
contrivance the ambitions of power-thirsty politicians and tribal
divisions. Belgium, we know, never prepared her colonies for
independence, and when she transferred power to the Congo-
lese people, it was obvious that it was never intended that
independence would be genuine. Because of the lack of political
organisation in the Belgian Congo, as a result of the colonial
policy forbidden it, and the hurried attempts to forestall
nationalist cohesion by encouraging tribal associations, the ground
was well set for the interfering tactics of the imperialist and
cold war interests that entered Katanga to guard their
investments and sever it from the jurisdiction of the central

If we need an illustration of the use to which tribalism- can
be put by the divide and rule tactics of imperialism and its
African puppets, the Congo provides it most graphically.

Unfortunately, Patrice Lumumba was not allowed time to
complete his unifying policy, and was put out of the way
precisely in order that he might not do so. Everything that
followed from the neo-colonialist and cold war strategy in the
Congo and the manipulation of strings in the United Nations
by the same interests, is testimony to the crying need for
African unity everywhere and in everything that is done in

I am glad that at the time Ghana did not withdraw her
troops from the Congo, like so many other nations, as this would
have left the way wide open to the interventionists who were
only waiting for the opportunity to be left alone to take over
this enormous territory for themselves.

'Now I come to the task directly of the fighters who are in
the front rank of the struggle. Unity, fellow freedom fighters,
must be watchword of those who are leading the masses into
the battle for independence in the many parts of Africa which,
alas, are still under the dragging yoke of colonialism. You must
close your ranks and stand firmly together. You must forget
your theoretical differences and minor political polemics. The
forces that are massed against you, as I have explained, are
mighty indeed, and though they have their differences in many
things, they are united in their determination to keep Africa as their
rich economic province. Division among us is a luxury we
cannot afford. Our open squabbles are the advantages which
the enemy loses no time to exploit and thereby decimate our
forces, and undermine our purpose. This is an aspect that we
must examine most seriously so as to find means of clearing
away such differences as we have, and coming together in a
solid phalanx, to meet the enemy on a common front.

Moreover, the sectionalism of separate organizations within a
single territory, for instance, apart from its fissionable dangers
-is wasteful in the extreme. The endeavour to enlist mass support
for a multiplicity of organizations avowedly dedicated to the
attainment of independence can only lead to tribalist and religious
communalism, on which so many good intentions have foundered.
It provides greater opportunity for the employment of imperialist
divide and rule tactics. It creates a diffussion of much-needed
organisational manpower, which could be more tactically deployed
if encompassed, within a single organisation. Furthermore, a
single organisation could embrace the whole popular support
and channel its enthusiasm around one programme, instead of
dividing its attention and its allegiance to the disadvantage of
the struggle. Sometimes the impression is created that in certain
places the struggle is for leadership per se and not so much for

independence. This is unfortunate, and I say it with grief and
reluctance. It is regrettable when some leaders appear to be more
concern with -being leaders than with understanding what we
are leading for and what we are leading against.

I hope that I have made clear to you here the nature of the
struggle as I see it. As I have said, it is our African struggle,
and it is taking place here in Africa. Many of our freedom
fighters have been forced out of their countries as a result
of the militant part they have played in the struggle, and
they are continuing to play their part in many different ways.

But they will understand me when I say that the struggle
for the independence of each territory will, in the final ana-
lysis, be fought out within that territory. Therefore, the
freedom fighters outside must keep their links with those at
home and be guided to some extent by the closer knowledge
of the state of things of those who have been left to carry
on behind. Moreover, they must not be surprised if other new
leaders are thrown up in- the course of battle, as it will not
always be convenient for those at home to wait upon the word
from the exile leaders. What you have to do here is to examine
all the aspects of your struggle and the forces within and
without and plan for the final assault. The struggle may be
long. It will certainly not be easy, and you must not allow
yourselves to be deflected by such extraneous issues as border
differences and other contentious disputes which can have no
relevance as long as your independence is in doubt, and which
will disappear within a unified Africa. What you must be
prepared to defeat are the designs of the colonial powers to
divide up your territories so as to deprive you of portions
that are essential to your viability and economic developments.

It is a common practice for the colonial powers before
they finally transfer power to look around for some means
of partitioning the subject territory, in order to weaken it
and force it back under their neo-colonialist wing. You must
be prepared to meet all such devices. Just as in the course of
battle you must look for and learn to recognize the agents and
the provocateurs whom the enemy sends out to infiltrate your
ranks as a fifth column. There may be among us spies and
informers for the enemy, betraying their own people for a
mess of pottage. Worse than these are the agents who come
to us with honeyed words to weaken our discernment in
discriminating the true purpose behind the facade of friendship.

We must be prepared for many dissemblings of this kind
and others. You will be warned against this and that inde-

pendent state. You will be flattered, cajoled, denigraded, lauded
They will pit you against each other, against the independent
states. They are already classifying your enemies and your friends
among us by dividing us into the Casablanca and the Monrovia
Speaking for myself, I must state that this classification is insi-
dious and designed by the neo-colonialists to crystallise a perma-
nent division in the ranks of the African leaders. They identify the
Casablanca group as radical and militant, and the Monrovia group
as moderate and reasonable. This division is a vicious thrust at
African unity and the sooner we realise its danger and counteract
it, the better it will be for all of us.
Let us tell the colonialists and neo-colonialists, that moderate or
radical, militant or reasonable, Africa is Africa, one and indivisible.
It is not their business to categorise our attributes. That is for our
African masses to do, and they will do it in a manner that will
spell unity and not division.
We must quickly throw a bridge across this and other artificial
openings which the imperialists are trying to create between us.
We cannot do this by fulfilling the parts assigned to us by them or
by associating with our ex-colonial masters in a rider-horse
It is for us to bring nearer the day when we shall be able to
refer to ourselves simply as the African power and give to our
detractors and traducer evidence of our determination to be rid of
imperialist classification and nomenclature.
This is all part of your task, fellow freedom fighters, as it is
ours, the already independent states. The destiny of our peoples,
the fate of our great continent, lies in your hands. You have to
your credit a most impressive list of successes in the grim struggle
for independence. The face of Africa is changing, physically,
socially, and mentally. Before you, comrades, lies the task of put-
ting the finishing touches to complete the picture of a fully liberat-
ed Africa, united, strong and forward-looking.
May the deliberations of this Conference of Nationalists Freedom
Fighters place the final nails in the coffin of colonialism and neo-
colonialism in all their forms and manifestations, and imprint the
seal of freedom, unity, progress, peace and prosperity on our
people and on Africa.
Keep aloft, freedom fighters, keep aloft the fighting banner.
Africa demands that we keep on fighting until victory is wnon. Now
is the time to fight. Now is the time to win. Long Live African
Independence! Long Live African Unity! Long Live African
Freedom Fighters!

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