(1960) Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, “Independence Day”

On Saturday, October 1, 1960, Nigeria became an independent nation.  What follows is Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa’s speech delivered at Tafawa Balewa Square in Lagos at the Independence Ceremony.   Today is Independence Day. The first of October 1960 is a date to which for … Read More(1960) Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, “Independence Day”

(1961) Albert Luthuli, “Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Speech”

Image Ownership: Public Domain In December 1960, Albert Luthuli, President of the African National Congress of South Africa, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his role in the struggle against apartheid.  The South African government however, refused to allow Luthuli to leave the country … Read More(1961) Albert Luthuli, “Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Speech”

(1962) Nelson Mandela, “Address at the Conference of the Pan-African Freedom Movement of East and Central Africa”

In January 1962, Nelson Mandela, the emerging leader of the South African campaign against apartheid, spoke at a convention of Pan African advocates meeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.  In that speech he outlined the history of the freedom struggle that he would one day personify. … Read More(1962) Nelson Mandela, “Address at the Conference of the Pan-African Freedom Movement of East and Central Africa”

(1962) Nnamdi Azikiwe, “The Future of Pan Africanism”

By 1962 Nnamdi Azikiwe (1904-1996) was a well-known independence leader in Nigeria.  As President of the Nigerian Senate he was one of the most powerful individuals in the government of the young nation.  Azikiwe, like Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana, Leopold Senghor of Senegal, and Jomo … Read More(1962) Nnamdi Azikiwe, “The Future of Pan Africanism”

(1963) Es’kia (Ezekiel) Mphahlele, “On Negritude in Literature”

Es’kia Mphahlele was a South African writer, professor, and political activist who was critical of the nation’s apartheid regime.  He subsequently spent twenty years in exile from South Africa between 1957 and 1977.  In the speech below, given in Johannesburg, South Africa in June, 1963, … Read More(1963) Es’kia (Ezekiel) Mphahlele, “On Negritude in Literature”

(1963) Haile Selassie, “Towards African Unity”

On May 25, 1963 the Organization for African Unity (OAU) was established with a permanent headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.  Haile Selassie, Emperor of Ethiopia, was selected as the first President of the OAU.  His acceptance speech appears below. This is indeed a momentous and … Read More(1963) Haile Selassie, “Towards African Unity”

(1963) Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, “Addis Ababa”

What follows is the speech by Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa on the occasion of the creation of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) at Addis Abba, Ethiopia, on May 24, 1963. Your Imperial Majesty, Mr. President, Your Excellencies, First, I want to express the thanks … Read More(1963) Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, “Addis Ababa”

(1963) Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, “Chancellor’s Address at the University of Ibadan”

On November 17, 1948 the University of Ibadan became the first modern institution of higher education in Nigeria when it began as an external college of the University of London.  Fifteen years later the University became independent of all ties with the British university.   Sir … Read More(1963) Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, “Chancellor’s Address at the University of Ibadan”

(1964) Dr. Martin Luther King, “Receiving the Nobel Peace Prize”

On December 10, 1964, Dr. Martin Luther King became only the second African American (after Ralph Bunche) to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.  His acceptance speech given in Oslo, Norway, appears below. Your Majesty, Your Royal Highness, Mr. President, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen: I accept … Read More(1964) Dr. Martin Luther King, “Receiving the Nobel Peace Prize”

(1964) Nelson Mandela, “I Am Prepared To Die”

In 1962, Nelson Mandela, leader of Umkhonto we Sizwe (Spear of the Nation) the armed wing of the African National Congress, was convicted by a South African court of traveling outside the country without a passport and inciting workers to strike.  He was sentenced to … Read More(1964) Nelson Mandela, “I Am Prepared To Die”