Tanzania Travel Guide

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Oman fort

Oman fort

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Tanzania is one of the most enchanting countries in eastern Africa. Its majestic national parks are a paradise for wild-life lovers and if that's not your thing then you have a wealth of other choices to choose from - from scaling the slopes of the incredible Mt Kilimanjaro to exploring the seductive island of Zanzibar. Tanzania is truly a country not to be missed.

Most of the known history of Tanganyika before 1964 concerns the coastal area, although the interior has a number of important prehistoric sites, including the Olduvai Gorge. Trading contacts between Arabia and the East African coast existed by the 1st century AD, and there are indications of connections with India. The coastal trading centres were mainly Arab settlements, and relations between the Arabs and their African neighbours appear to have been fairly friendly. After the arrival of the Portuguese in the late 15th century, the position of the Arabs was gradually undermined, but the Portuguese made little attempt to penetrate into the interior. They lost their foothold north of the Ruvuma River early in the 18th century as a result of an alliance between the coastal Arabs and the ruler of Muscat on the Arabian Peninsula.

This link remained extremely tenuous, however, until French interest in the slave trade from the ancient town of Kilwa, on the Tanganyikan coast, revived the trade in 1776. Attention by the French also aroused the sultan of Muscat's interest in the economic possibilities of the East African coast, and a new Omani governor was appointed at Kilwa. For some time most of the slaves came from the Kilwa hinterland, and until the 19th century such contacts as existed between the coast and the interior were due mainly to African caravans from the interior.

In their constant search for slaves, Arab traders began to penetrate farther into the interior, more particularly in the southeast toward Lake Nyasa. Farther north two merchants from India followed the tribal trade routes to reach the country of the Nyamwezi about 1825. Along this route ivory appears to have been as great an attraction as slaves, and Sa'id bin Sultan himself, after the transfer of his capital from Muscat to Zanzibar, gave every encouragement to the Arabs to pursue these trading possibilities. From the Nyamwezi country the Arabs pressed on to Lake Tanganyika in the early 1840s. Tabora (or Kazé, as it was then called) and Ujiji, on Lake Tanganyika, became important trading centres, and a number of Arabs made their homes there. They did not annex these territories but occasionally ejected hostile chieftains. Mirambo, an African chief who built for himself a temporary empire to the west of Tabora in the 1860s and '70s, effectively blocked the Arab trade routes when they refused to pay him tribute. His empire was purely a personal one, however, and collapsed on his death in 1884.

The first Europeans to show an interest in Tanganyika in the 19th century were missionaries of the Church Missionary Society, Johann Ludwig Krapf and Johannes Rebmann, who in the late 1840s reached Kilimanjaro. It was a fellow missionary, Jakob Erhardt, whose famous "slug" map (showing, on Arab information, a vast, shapeless, inland lake) helped stimulate the interest of the British explorers Richard Burton and John Hanning Speke. They traveled from Bagamoyo to Lake Tanganyika in 1857-58, and Speke also saw Lake Victoria. This expedition was followed by Speke's second journey, in 1860, in the company of J.A. Grant, to justify the former's claim that the Nile rose in Lake Victoria. These primarily geographic explorations were followed by the activities of David Livingstone, who in 1866 set out on his last journey for Lake Nyasa. Livingstone's object was to expose the horrors of the slave trade and, by opening up legitimate trade with the interior, to destroy the slave trade at its roots. Livingstone's journey led to the later expeditions of H.M. Stanley and V.L. Cameron. Spurred on by Livingstone's work and example, a number of missionary societies began to take an interest in East Africa after 1860.


Portuguese and Omani domination

Africans are known to have inhabited both Zanzibar and Pemba islands possibly before the birth of Christ. Thus it is possible that the present African inhabitants of the former Sultanate consist (i) of the descendants of these ancient natives; (ii) descendants of the ex-slaves; and (iii) of Africans who have attained Zanzibar citizenship including the migratory labour force which comes and goes according to the season. The original African inhabitants of Zanzibar are believed to have migrated from the African mainland, probably and initially in search of better fishing facilities on a seasonal basis.  The two ethnic groups were the Tumbatu, who lived at the outset on the islet of Tumbatu off the north-west coast of Zanzibar island, and the Hadimu, who occupied an area on the main island to the south of the Tumbatu islet.

Later on the Tumbatu tribe extended their settlements to the main island and now occupies the northern part of Zanzibar. The Hadimu now occupy more than 60 per cent of the total acreage of Zanzibar island in the central-eastern parts and almost all of the region to the south of the Zanzibar town. The main tribe which settled in Pemba was one called the Pemba; but a small group of the Tumbatu tribe also settled in the southern part of the island.

The small and separate village communities, which these early settlers created in the islands, formed themselves into monarchies or chieftainships, each community being, for all practical purposes, autonomous and independent of each other. A settlement of unknown size of population was therefore the largest political organization known to have existed in the early history of these islands, except perhaps where there was a kind of "confederacy" of a large number of small neighbouring settlements. Due to the lack of political unity based on an inter-tribal organization throughout the islands, the settlers remained vulnerable to attack and were liable to conquest by Asiatic and European countries whose nationals travelled from time to time through the centuries to the East Coast of Africa in search of trade and adventure.

Early visitors to Zanzibar and Pemba included Persians, Hindus, Jews, Arabs, Phoenicians and possibly Assyrrians. Ancient African settlers therefore had contact with a pot pourri of cultures and managed not only to survive and absorb some of the newcomers, but also to adopt many of their political, economic and social methods of organization. The Africans did not seem to have put up any resistance to these invaders but they became used to their comings and goings which were dictated by the seasonal monsoon winds. Because of the African inherent vulnerability, which was due to the absence of unity among the various ethnic groups, Arabs were able to establish a colonial regime in the islands.

But the establishment by the Muscat Arabs of an Arab colonial state in the nineteenth century was very recent compared with the time of arrival and settlement in Zanzibar of Persians. Ancient traders from Shiraz, then a small town in southern Iran (Persia), began in about the tenth century A.D. to arrive in Zanzibar in large numbers and to intermarry with local Bantu people there: the Tumbatu and the Hadimu. The Shirazis, who are an admixture of Bantu and Asiatic blood and are often known as the Swahilis, were the result of this miscegenation; and there emerged the Tumbatu and Hadimu Shirazis. Muscat Arabs also shared in the creation of the Swahili people and were an important cultural influence. The Comoriatis, who form a small ethnic group in Zanzibar, come from the French islands of Comoro in the Indian Ocean. The last population breakdown on an ethnic basis was made in l958 and gave a summary of population figures as follows: Afro/Arab, 279,935; Asians other than Arabs, 18,334; Europeans. 507; and others, 335. Arabs alone were about 47,000.

Swahili is the national language of Zanzibar and about one-third of Swahili words is said to derive from Arabic. Before independence was achieved in December 1963, two flags flew over Zanzibar: the red flag of the ex-Sultan,, and the Union Jack. The latter billowed along with the former to show who the real boss was. About 97 per cent of Zanzibar’s population are Moslems but as would be expected in a place where people of such diverse cultural backgrounds live together, the remaining three per cent are a pot pourri: Hindus, Christians, Ismailis, and others.

The history of Zanzibar was written by the wind. As we have seen, ancient Asiatic nationals used the monsoons to sail in their dhows to East Africa where they traded in ivory, slaves, spices, skins and iron. Gervase Mathew in a recent essay based on considerable research has said that the Periplus of the Erythrean Sea "is the earliest surviving description of the coast of East Africa".

According to Mathew, and contrary to what others had written about it, the Periplus is a "Greek commercial handbook of the late first or early second century". In the Periplus, which is extant, the author expressed the surprising familiarity which Arabs at that time already had with East Africa, their understanding of the language of the natives and intermarriage with them.

During the seventh to the tenth century some Arabs took advantage of their established familiarity with East Africa and rather than simply coming to visit the place, as others had done before them for several centuries, they actually came and settled there. These Arabs took refuge in East Africa after having fled their countries following religious disputes among Arab tribes over whom should be the rightful Caliph or Successor to Prophet Mohammed. It is believed that one effect of these religious upheavals was the flight in around A.D. 950 of al-Hasan bin Ali Sultan of Shiraz who sailed with his six sons and followers from southern Persia and established settlements on the East Coast of Africa and islands, one of which was Zanzibar. With his six sons and equipped with seven ships, Ali Sultan made his historic voyage to Zenji-bar or the country of the Blacks and thus marked the beginning of what became known as the Zenj Empire. It is believed that they founded seven settlements of which Kilwa Kisiwani (the island of Kilwa, and not Kilwa Kivinje which was founded much later on the mainland) was one. One of Ali Sultan’s sons called Au is "stated to have become the first ruler of Kilwa island in 956"1o. It is also generally believed that Kilwa later developed into a seat of the Zenj Empire, which lasted until the first decade of the sixteenth century when the Portuguese conquered it.

The empire had consisted of island and coastal settlements or "cities" of varying sizes, the best known of which were Mozambique, KiIwa island, Zanzibar, Pemba, Mombasa (Fort Jesus), Malindi, Sofala and the Lamu Archipelago, the last mentioned consisting of Pate, Manda, Faza (Ampaza) and Tarkwa islets. Petty Arab sultans or sheikhs and a very high level of civilization obtained ruled these. As a result of this civilizing influence which the Arabs brought with them, Africans came to identify civilization with Arabs. Hence the Swahili word "ustaarabu", which means "civilization", and implies that to be civilized one should be like an Arab. But the Pcrtuguese12, with their superior and more destructive weapons, wrested from the Arabs the "mastery" of the Indian Ocean and caused the disintegration of the Arab political control, thus interrupting, albeit only temporarily, what was already a flourishing commercial civilization on the East Coast of Africa.

The menacing influence of the Portuguese began with the historic voyage of Vasco da Gama around the Cape of Good Hope to Calicut, India. in 1498. Vasco da Gama did not bother much about conquests nor was he adequately and well enough equipped even to attempt to conquer any settlement of appreciable size; and the only main achievement of his first voyage was the discovery of a new route to India. But in the course of the journey he saw East Africa and had difficulties with Arab sultans and merchants especially in Mozambique, Kilwa island and Mombasa. In 1502, on his second expedition. da Gama was better equipped, having 20 ships, which was five times more than the vessels be used in his previous voyage. He was thus ready for any eventuality should the Arabs repeat their aggression towards the Portuguese.

On arrival in East Africa da Gama and Ruy Lourenco Ravasco hurled threats at the sheikhs of Kilwa, Zanzibar and Brava. They told them that their settlements would be burned down unless they were willing to acknowledge the supremacy of King Manoel 114 of Portugal and pay him a yearly tribute in gold. The sheikis would not heed the threats, however, and Portuguese attacks, which spread over a wide area, followed swiftly. By force majeure da Gama subdued Kilwa in 1502 and got the Sultan to agree to pay an annual tribute. Ravasco did the same with Zanzibar in the following year. The Portuguese then moved northwards to Mombasa and beyond. In all, Mombasa and Kilwa experienced the worst treatment from the Portuguese, presumably because they put up more determined resistance against them. Both were not only ruthlessly sacked, but also savagely burned and destroyed. Thus in Mombasa almost every living thing was destroyed and all who "failed to escape had been killed and burned. Lamu, Pate, Brava and Oja were the next targets of Portuguese attack. The two avoided destruction by capitulating early enough but Oja and Brava defied the attack. The first declared its allegiance to the ruler of Egypt instead, and both were "sacked and burnt". Mogadishu was the only town on the East Coast which seemed to have remained intact, having been assured of this happy situation by some unusually unfavourable weather conditions which effectively prevented the advance of the Portuguese. By about 1510 the Portuguese had ravaged the entire coast-line south of Mogadishu and could claim to have established effective political control there and seized the trade route to the sub-continent of India and beyond.

But the Portuguese lacked the necessary resources to keep the vast territories they had captured. Dissension and intrigue soon set in, and were followed by sabotage and assassinations of Arab quislings whom the Portuguese had installed as puppet rulers. In 1698, which was the bicentennial of da Gama’s historic voyage. The Sultan of Muscat in Oman Seif bin Sultan, who had been feeling increasingly envious of the Portuguese possessions in East Africa, incited the local Arabs to fight and they recaptured Mombasa from the Portuguese. These Arabs. repeated their performance in the following year by recapturing Kilwa and Pemba. But the Portuguese managed to regain Mombasa in 1727 only to lose it again, and this time for good, two years later. The Portuguese expulsion from Kilwa and Pemba in 1699 virtually ended their rule in East Africa north of Mozambique.

Meanwhile the Muscat Arabs had become virtually the dominant Arab group in East Africa notably after the earlier expulsion of the Portuguese from Fort Jesus in 1698. Pemba and Kilwa islands were two of their earliest strongholds. The Imam or the elected politico-spiritual leader of Oman then claimed as his territory all the east coast of Africa north of the Rufiji River and his governors (or liwalis) were put in charge of all the towns and settlements in the area. But neither this nor even the Portuguese expulsion from East Africa meant a tighter control over the East Coast by the Imam or Sultan of Muscat. At its best his hold on the territory remained "less than tenuous" and each city "was vassal only in proportion to the fewness of its cannon or the timidity of the local sheikhs".’ As seems always to be the case, the local so-called East African subjects of the Sultan of Muscat having removed the Portuguese were not prepared to be subjected to another colonial regime, as harsh and as ruthless in dealing with them as the Portuguese had been. They took advantage of the existence of an internal uprising against the Yorubi Sultans of Oman and by the early 1740s several of the east coast towns, notably Pate, Malindi, Pemba Kilwa island, Zanzibar and Mafia, were again showing signs of wanting to seek assistance from the Portuguese to rid themselves of their Arab masters. Sultan al-Hasan bin Ibrahim of Kilwa provided the necessary liaison with the Portuguese in Mozambique and reported to them in 1759 the eruption of war between Oman and the local Arab sultans in Mombasa and Pate. The apparent rap-preachment between the Portuguese and their former political vassals in the east coast culminated in an abortive Portuguese attempt in 1769 supposedly to "liberate" the Mazrui governors of Mombasa.

In the meantime the Yorubi dynasty of Oman (1711-1744) had been overthrown and replaced by the Omani Busaidi dynasty founded in 1744 by Ahmed bin Said al Busaidi who died in 1784. It was during his rule that Mombasa and Pate took the lead in expressing open and violent hostility against the Muscat Arabs which was soon copied elsewhere with frequent incidents of murdering the representatives of the Imam and of refusal to pay taxes to him. But it was not until after his death, when Oman had somewhat recovered from the effects of the protracted revolt against it by its Arab possessions in Asia, that any serious attempt was made to consolidate Oman's suzerainty over its African territory. Early in 1784 Said bin Ahmad, who was an unsuccessful claimant to the Omani throne, with his son Ali travelled in anger to the Zenji-lands and attempted to carve out a domain for himself. His son Ali subdued Kilwa island in the following year and soon after, Zanzibar also surrendered to them.

But the exploits of Saif bin Ahmad were short-lived. Imam’s forces arrived soon after, even before the surrender of Zanzibar was quite complete, and both islands were quickly regained and Ahmad banished to Lamu. A great deal still remained to be done, however, before the ruler of Oman could claim to have established an effective political control over his East African territory. This task was to be undertaken by the shrewd, tough and indomitable Seyyid Said bin Sultan (1806-I 856) who succeeded to the Omani throne after murdering the former Imam, his brother.

With his succession to the throne, Zanzibar soon emerged as the centre of Omani commercial operations on the East Coast of Africa and became also the chief slave trade market. He also directed his energies towards a final elimination of the nuisance of revolt in East Africa which had been "tolerated" to some extent by his predecessors owing to military weaknesses in Oman itself because of an internal uprising and political instability arising from it.

The hardest nut for Sultan Seyyid Said to crack was Mombasa with its Mazrui governors. The Mazrui Arabs who enjoyed a good reputation in Asia as able leaders and who seemed bent on becoming sovereign rulers somewhere, first took part in the leadership of Mombasa in 1727 when one of them became a deputy governor of the place. This, it will be remembered, was the year when the Portuguese regained Mombasa and then lost it two years later. After some time the Mazrui family became deeply entrenched in Mombasa with the seizure of power there by Ali bin Uthman al-Mazrui that by 1753 had also seized Pemba and unsuccessfully attempted to do the same thing with Zanzibar. A year after Seyyid Said had become ruler of Oman, another Mazrui governor, Ahmad bin Said al-Mazrui, extended political control over Pate and by 1814 he or his supporters had brought Lamu also under the domain of the Mazrui family. Thus the Mazrui challenge to the suzerainty of Seyyid Said on the East Coast of Africa became a factor which had to be reckoned with.

But Said was not in a position to do anything about this Mazrui defiance until the second decade of the nineteenth century since he had not yet consolidated his control over Oman itself. In 1822 Said dispatched Hamid bin Ahmad, who was his relative, to Zenji-bar and, within a short time Pate, Brava and Lamu were subjected to Oman. Omani efforts to inflict an early defeat upon the Mazrui in Mombasa were frustrated by some mix-up in which the British were involved; but in 1826 the British had withdrawn from there, and in the following year the Mazrui surrendered. They rebelled again shortly afterwards, however, when Said sailed back to Oman to try to quell a revolt there and it was not until about 1840 that the Mazrui were finally overcome. Said thus became the undisputed ruler of the entire East Coast of Africa north of Mozambique.

Meanwhile in 1832 Said had moved his palace to Zanzibar the better to be able, even before Mombasa capitulated, to tighten his control over a large section of East Africa. That is how modern Zanzibar was created.

In addition to being the gateway to East and Central Africa in the "pre-scramble for Africa" period, Zanzibar was also important for the role which its rulers played, albeit often by yielding to force majeure, in supporting efforts, mainly by the British, aimed at getting at the main sources and routes of the slave trade and ensuring its early abolition. By 1822 Sayyid Said had agreed to sign the Moresby Treaty which was to make "illegal", throughout his dominions, the "sale of slaves to subjects of Christian powers He also agreed to limit the slave traffic to ports in his African and Oman dominions. To confirm the Moresby Treaty and other existing trading regulations, the U.S. (1836) and Britain (1840) established diplomatic relations with Zanzibar and posted their consuls there. France also posted a consul. Zanzibar was thus the first territory in tropical Africa to enjoy such relations. In 1845 the Hamerton Treaty further restricted the slave trade to his East African dominions. This was a significant step for two main reasons: first, it tightened the noose around the neck of the East African slave trade; and second, it triggered bitter resentment and anger among the subjects of His Highness the Sultan. Muscat’s loss in revenue resulting from it was believed to be considerable, and it is generally accepted that this was one reason why Muscat pressed later for a separate sultan of its own. It is interesting to note that when a dispute about succession arose it was referred to Lord Charles Canning, then governor-general of India, for arbitration. He decided on 2 April 1861, that the late Sultan’s two sons (Thuwain and Majid) should divide their father’s possessions. Thuwain became the Sultan of Muscat and Oman and Majid of Zanzibar. Lord Canning further "pronounced the independence of Zanzibar, as part of the settlement. A year later Great Britain, Germany and France, in a joint multi-lateral declaration, recognized this independence. The recognition gave some international status to the Sultan’s claims over the mainland, but in 1886, as documented by the Delimitation Treaty, Great Britain and Germany violated the integrity of his territories. They, however, recognized his sovereignty over Zanzibar.

Earlier, stories told by such explorers as David Livingstone had ineffectiveness of the Hamerton Treaty of 1845 as slaves were still trafficked beyond the Sultan’s realm. For instance between 1867 and 1869, notwithstanding the determined efforts of British naval patrols, about "37,000 slaves were successfully smuggled overseas Sir Bartle Frere, a former governor of Bombay, headed a parliamentary committee which went to Zanzibar in January 1873 to persuade the Sultan to end the slave trade in his dominions. But Sultan Barghash, who had succeeded Majid in 1870, opposed the abolition of the slave trade. It was only after threats from the British Consul General, Sir John Kirk, that Barghash signed the treaty on 5 June 1873. This treaty made the slave trade illegal and the gates of the slave market were closed forthwith and forever. To commemorate this momentous emergence from darkness and inhumanity, the foundation stone of the Protestant Cathedral was laid on the same site shortly after, in 1873. Despite these favourable developments, the deeply entrenched institution of slavery did not yet seem to have been finally shaken. To be sure, the slave trade was illegal; but the legal status of slavery was not abolished in Zanzibar until 1897; the same objective was realized in Kenya in 1904. In Tanganyika it was not until the country had become a British mandated territory in 1919 that slavery was finally abolished.

Reference has already been made to the Delimitation Treaty signed by Germany and Great Britain between 29 October and 1 November 1886. The signatories had taken this step in an attempt to settle conflicting territorial claims over parts of East Africa. But they had done this without the Sultan being consulted. After this amputation of his dominions the Sultan retained sovereignty only over the islands of Zanzibar, Pemba, Mafia, and Lamu plus a 16 kilometre (ten mile) coastal strip, stretching from the Tana River in the north to the Ruvuma in the south. Britain and Germany divided between themselves the hinterland beyond the sixteen-kilometre limit by a line drawn from the Umba river westward to Lake Victoria and thus fixed the present boundary between Kenya and Tanganyika.

Barghash, as well as the Portuguese, reacted sharply to the Anglo-German agreement. Barghash sent cables of protest to London and Berlin requesting that he be given at least six months to consider the treaty. But this was not granted and he was forced to sign the treaty on 7 December 1886. He died in March 1888.

Humiliating losses of territory of this kind continued and Sultan Khalifa bin Said, who succeeded Barghash, also bowed to the inevitable, receiving £200,000 sterling from the Germans in exchange for the "Tanganyika" portion of the Littoral. The Imperial British East Africa Company, formed in 1885 to contest claims over parts of Tanganyika made by Dr. Carl Peters of Germany, was then busy reorganizing and was chartered by the Crown in September 1888, as the East Africa Company under the leadership of Sir William Mackinnon. The company operated in the Sultan’s coastal strip in exchange for payment of an annuity of £1 1,0(0 sterling. As the Empire builders increased their drive for the acquisition of territories in Africa, the further erosion both of Zanzibar’s independence and the Sultan’s sovereignty could hardly be avoided. In 1890 Germany and Britain signed the treaty of Heligoland by which they made a ‘‘swap" enabling the former to acquire Heligoland in exchange for her recognition of the latter’s protection over Zanzibar. The Kaiser, William II, unlike Bismarck who had just fallen, valued Heligoland, which is off the North German Coast, more than Zanzibar, because he needed the former in order to establish a naval base there. Uganda was also to be drawn within the British "sphere of influence" at a later date.

Social Organization Before colonial invasion, the indigenous people had built up formidable political systems and institutions. These were either kingdoms, chief-doms or social orders such as the Maasai Age-set rule. The Nyamwezi people under chief Mirambo, the Hehe under chief Mkwawa and a series of kingdoms among the Chagga and the Haya people are some of such developments recorded.

It is from some of these institutions that resistance to colonial domination, subjugation and exploitation emerged from late 19th century to the 20th century. For instance, in 1905-7, through the famous "Majimaji War" the people in the Southern part of Tanzania took up arms and fought the German rulers there. Helped by the world wars, eventually, the local people kicked the Germans out of Tanganyika. Traces of historic exotic artifacts have been made as evidences of the interactions between Tanzanians and the rest of the world societies. The Periplus of the Erythrean sea, for instance, puts clear the record that the East African coast had strong political developments.

Further Arabian influence in the country is recorded since the 7th century after the Birth of Christ. The occupation of the Isles and the Coastal areas by Asian societies did culminate in a systematic inhuman slave trade. Tired of cosmetic political changes in Zanzibar, the "Zenj" people evicted the Arabian rulers in 1964 through an armed revolution.

Similarly, after a protracted occupation by the unsuspecting traders, explorers and missionaries from Europe since the 15th Century Tanzania found itself being subjected to systematic colonial domination by Germany and Great Britain at different times before 1961. The Great Berlin conference of 1884 was the springboard of all what had happened for subjugating Tanzania and Africa.

During the domination of Tanzania by Germans, British and Arabs, the indigenous people were decimated, lost their destiny and cultural identity, were economically exploited and their technology disrupted. However, the worst evil of all committed by colonialists has been their wishful intent to discourage individual initiative to venture, discover, make attempts and to fabricate. The outcome is the current dependency status!

As early as 1950's different, but very interesting forms of modern struggles for independence were being created. For example by 1954 the Tanganyika African National Union (TANU), a political party already was a force to reckon with under the able leadership of Julius Kambarage. Nyerere. It is under the same political party that Tanzania got rid of British domination in 1961. In Zanzibar, the Afro Shirazi Party emerged late in the 1950's and toppled the arab rule on the island in 1964. Tanganyika and Zanzibar United in that year to form the United Republic of Tanzania.

Colonial Period German East Africa

The first agent of German imperialism was Carl Peters, who, with Joachim, Count Pfeil and Karl Juhlke, evaded the sultan of Zanzibar late in 1884 to land on the mainland. He made a number of "contracts" in the Usambara area by which several chiefs were said to have surrendered their territory to him. Peters' activities were confirmed by Bismarck. By the Anglo-German Agreement of 1886 the sultan of Zanzibar's vaguely substantiated claims to dominion on the mainland were limited to a 10-mile-wide coastal strip, and Britain and Germany divided the hinterland between them as spheres of influence, the region to the south becoming known as German East Africa. Following the example of the British to the north, the Germans obtained a lease of the coastal strip from the sultan in 1888, but their tactlessness and fear of commercial competition led to a Muslim rising in August 1888. The rebellion was put down only after the intervention of the imperial German government and with the assistance of the British navy.

Recognizing the administrative inability of the German East Africa Company, which had thereto ruled the country, the German government declared a protectorate over its sphere of influence in 1891 and over the coastal strip, where the company had bought out the sultan's rights. Germany was anxious to exploit the resources of its new dependency, but lack of communications at first restricted development to the coastal area. The introduction of sisal from Mexico in 1892 by the German agronomist Richard Hindorff marked the beginning of the territory's most valuable industry, which was encouraged by the development of a railway from the new capital of Dar es Salaam to Lake Tanganyika. In 1896 work began on the construction of a railway running northeastward from Tanga to Moshi, which it reached in 1912. This successfully encouraged the pioneer coffee-growing activities on the slopes of Kilimanjaro. Wild rubber tapped by Africans, together with plantation-grown rubber, helped swell the country's economy. The government also supplied good-quality cottonseed free to African growers and sold it cheaply to European planters. The administration tried to make good the lack of clerks and minor craftsmen by encouraging the development of schools, an activity in which various missionary societies were already engaged.

The enforcement of German overlordship was strongly resisted, but control was established by the beginning of the 20th century. Almost at once came a reaction to German methods of administration, the outbreak of the Maji Maji rising in 1905. Although there was little organization behind it, the rising spread over a considerable portion of southeastern Tanganyika and was not finally suppressed until 1907. It led to a reappraisal of German policy in East Africa. The imperial government had attempted to protect African land rights in 1895 but had failed in its objective in the Kilimanjaro area. Similarly, liberal labour legislation had not been properly implemented. The German government set up a separate Colonial Department in 1907, and more money was invested in East Africa. A more liberal form of administration rapidly replaced the previous semimilitary system.

World War I put an end to all German experiments. Blockaded by the British navy, the country could neither export produce nor get help from Germany. The British advance into German territory continued steadily from 1916 until the whole country was eventually occupied. The effects of the war upon Germany's achievements in East Africa were disastrous; the administration and economy were completely disrupted. In these circumstances the Africans reverted to their old social systems and their old form of subsistence farming. Under the Treaty of Versailles (1919), Britain received a League of Nations mandate to administer the territory except for Ruanda-Urundi, which came under Belgian administration, and the Kionga triangle, which went to Portugal.

Tanganyika Territory.

Sir Horace Byatt, administrator of the captured territory and, from 1920 to 1924, first British governor and commander in chief of Tanganyika Territory (as it was then renamed), enforced a period of recuperation before new development plans were set on foot. A Land Ordinance (1923) ensured that African land rights were secure. Sir Donald Cameron, governor from 1925 to 1931, infused a new vigour into the country. He reorganized the system of native administration by the Native Authority Ordinance (1926) and the Native Courts Ordinance (1929). His object was to build up local government on the basis of traditional authorities, an aim that he pursued with doctrinaire enthusiasm and success. He attempted to silence the criticisms by Europeans that had been leveled against his predecessor by urging the creation of a Legislative Council in 1926 with a reasonable number of nonofficial members, both European and Asian. In his campaign to develop the country's economy, Cameron won a victory over opposition from Kenya by gaining the British government's approval for an extension of the Central Railway Line from Tabora to Mwanza (1928). His attitude toward European settlers was determined by their potential contribution to the country's economy. He was, therefore, surprised by the British government's reluctance to permit settlement in Tanganyika. The economic depression after 1929 resulted in the curtailment of many of Cameron's development proposals. In the 1930s, too, Tanganyika was hampered by fears that it might he handed back to Germany in response to Hitler's demands for overseas possessions.

At the outbreak of World War II Tanganyika's main task was to make itself as independent as possible of imported goods. Inevitably the retrenchment evident in the 1930s became still more severe, and, while prices for primary products soared, the value of money depreciated proportionately. Tanganyika's main objective after the war was to ensure that its program for economic recovery and development should go ahead. The continuing demand for primary produce strengthened the country's financial position. The chief item in the development program was a plan to devote 3 million acres (1.2 million hectares) of land to the production of peanuts (the Groundnuts Scheme). The plan, which was to be financed by the British government, was to cost £25 million, and, in addition, a further £4.5 million would be required for the construction of a railway in southern Tanganyika. It failed because of the lack of adequate preliminary investigations and was subsequently carried out on a greatly reduced scale.

Constitutionally, the most important immediate postwar development was the British government's decision to place Tanganyika under UN trusteeship (1947). Under the terms of the trusteeship agreement, Britain was called upon to develop the political life of the territory, which, however, only gradually began to take shape in the 1950s with the growth of the Tanganyika African National Union (TANU). The first two African members had been nominated to the Legislative Council in December 1945. This number was subsequently increased to four, with three Asian nonofficial members and four Europeans. An official majority was retained. In an important advance in 1955, the three races were given parity of representation on the unofficial side of the council with 10 nominated members each, and for a time it seemed as if this basis would persist. The first elections to the unofficial side of the council, however, enabled TANU to show its strength, for even among the European and Asian candidates only those supported by TANU were elected.

A constitutional committee in 1959 unanimously recommended that after the elections in 1960 a large majority of the members of both sides of the council should be Africans and that elected members should form the basis of the government. The approval of the British colonial secretary was obtained for these proposals in December 1959, and in September 1960 a predominantly TANU government took office. The emergence of this party and its triumph over the political apathy of the people were largely due to the leadership of Julius Nyerere. Tanganyika became independent on Dec. 9, 1961, with Nyerere as its first prime minister.


British Protectorate

In 1890 what was left of the sultanate was proclaimed a British protectorate, and in 1891 a constitutional government was instituted under British auspices, with Sir Lloyd Mathews as first minister.On 14 December 1895, the Sultan was confronted with a new fait accompli involving the transfer of the administration of the Littoral to the British Government which was assuming administrative responsibility over the areas formerly administered by the IBEAC. The Sultan signed a document and the British Government agreed to continue paying the £11,000 annuity which the company had been paying.

In August 1896, on the death of the ruling sultan, Hamad ibn Thuwayn, the royal palace at Zanzibar was seized by Khalid, a son of Sultan Barghash, who proclaimed himself sultan. The British government disapproved, and, as he refused to submit, the palace was bombarded by British warships. Khalid escaped and took refuge at the German consulate, whence he was conveyed to German East Africa. Hamud ibn Mohammed was then installed as sultan (Aug. 27, 1896). In 1897 the legal status of slavery was finally abolished.

In 1913 Zanzibar was transferred from the Foreign to the Colonial Office and the Governor of the East African Protectorate, which seven years later became known as Kenya Colony, was in addition appointed the High Commission of Zanzibar. On the spot in Zanzibar a British Resident was appointed to administer the affairs of the Protectorate and, until 1926, was answerable to the High Commissioner in Nairobi. In that year Executive and Legislative Councils were introduced and the British Resident used the latter as the main instrument of authority which he needed for the administration of the Protectorate.

In the same year another important feature was incorporated in the Constitution. The position of the British Resident was very much strengthened by making him directly responsible to the Colonial Secretary in London instead of to the High Commissioner in Nairobi. In fact the office of the latter was abolished. The Sultan welcomed these changes as being calculated to familiarize his subjects with the workings of government in a way which had not hitherto been feasible.

In the Legislative Council the people of Zanzibar were henceforth to be represented by a minority of nominated unofficial members. Decrees proclaimed by the Sultan were in future to receive the approval of the legislature; but as the Council had an official majority with the window-dressing participation of a wholly nominated unofficial membership, such approval was expected to be automatic and formal rather than substantive.

Khalifa ibn Harub had became sultan in 1911. He was the leading Muslim prince in East Africa, and his moderating influence did much to steady Muslim opinion in that part of Africa at times of political crisis, especially during the two world wars. He died on Oct. 9, 1960, and was succeeded by his eldest son, Sir Abdullah ibn Khalifa.

In November 1960 the British Parliament approved a new constitution for Zanzibar. The first elections to the Legislative Council then established were held in January 1961 and ended in a deadlock. Further elections, held in June, were marked by serious rioting and heavy casualties. Ten seats were won by the Afro-Shirazi Party (ASP), representing mainly the African population; 10 by the Zanzibar Nationalist Party (ZNP), representing mainly the Zanzibari Arabs; and 3 by the Zanzibar and Pemba People's Party (ZPPP), an offshoot of the ZNP. The ZNP and ZPPP combined to form a government with Mohammed Shamte Hamadi as chief minister.

A constitutional conference held in London in 1962 was unable to fix a date for the introduction of internal self-government or for independence, because of failure to agree on franchise qualifications, the number of elected seats in the legislature, and the timing of the elections. An independent commission, however, subsequently delimited new constituencies and recommended an increase in the numbers of the Legislative Council, which the council accepted, also agreeing to the introduction of universal adult suffrage. Internal self-government was established in June 1963, and elections held the following month resulted in a victory for the ZNP-ZPPP coalition, which won 18 seats, the ASP winning the remaining 13. Final arrangements for independence were made at a conference in London in September. In October it was agreed that the Kenya coastal strip a territory that extended 10 miles inland along the Kenya coast from the Tanganyika frontier to Kipini and that had long been administered by Kenya although nominally under the sovereignty of Zanzibar would become an integral part of Kenya on that country's attainment of independence.


December 07, 2006 change by giorgio

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