Dr. Kwame Nantambu

Pan Africanism

Dr. Kwame Nantambu
September 20, 2007

i. In July 1900, Trinidad lawyer Henry Sylvester Williams had the conviction that the "problems of Black folk in England were largely based on racism," he coined the word "Pan-African." Pan = ALL

ii. Definition: Pan Africanism is "an aid to the promotion of national self-determination among Africans under African leadership for the benefit of the Africans themselves" Dr. W.E.B Du Bois.

George Padmore Trinidadian "the idea of Pan Africanism first arose as a manifestation of fraternal solidarity among Africans and people of African descent."

Kwame Ture: "the total liberation and unification of Africa under scientific socialism"

iii. Julius K. Nyerere Tanzania: "the Pan African movement or struggle was born as a reaction to racialism."

Purpose of Pan -Africanism - The total liberation of all Africans peoples; it seeks unity, stability a sense of self, community, self determination, self-reliance, common destiny and confraternity among all African peoples and peoples of African descent.

iv. Pan - African Conferences:

1. PAC 2/ 1919 - France
2. PAC 1921 - Britain, Brussels, Norway
3. PAC 11-12/ 1923 Britain, Norway
4. PAC 1921 - U.S.A
5. PAC 13-15/10/ 1945 - England
6. PAC 6/ 1974 - Tanzania
7. PAC 8/ 1994 - Nigeria

v. Geo - political significance of 5 PAC: 1945

I. Africans took over PACs and future PACs held in Africa not Europe as before
II. Kwame Nkrumah and George Padmore adopted pro-active, revolutionary anti-colonial approach. Du Bois adopted a non-violent, reactionary approach.
III. Geo- politicization of the movement.
IV. 90 delegates attended; National Council of Nigeria, Labour Party of Grenada, W.I. People's National Party plus T.R. Makonnen, Peter Abrahams. C.L.R. James and Jomo Kenyatta


a. Did not ask for favours, recognition and racial equality from European colonial powers.

b. Demanded an end to Euro-colonialism in Africa; precipitate the de-colonialization process.

c. Resolved that the masses must be organized through trade unions and political parties.

d. Resolutions passed: "The Challenge to the Colonial Powers" "Colonialzed is determined to use force as a last resort to achieve freedom."

"Declaration to the Colonial Workers, Farmers and Intellectuals"

"Africans should use strikes and boycotts to achieve political independence/freedom" and "Declaration to the Colonial People" emphasized the right of all colonial people to control their own destiny. All colonies must be free from foreign imperialist control.

Dr. Kwame Nantambu is a part-time lecturer at Cipriani College of Labour and Co-operative Studies and University of the West Indies.

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