TransAfrica News Report

(Vol. 1 No. 5)
by TransAfrica
with Dolores Clemons (Editor)
Washington, DC, United States
Spring 1980
4 pages
Contents: TRANSAFRICA WEEKEND • SALIM AHMED SALIM • AFRICA COULD FACE ECONOMIC DISASTER IN THE 1980s by Willard R. Johnson • RECENT EVENTS • From Rhodesia to Zimbabwe • ACTION ALERTS • Illegal Campaigning by Rhodesian Military • Dirty Tricks: Efforts to Discredit ZANU-PF and the Patriotic Front •  On May 31 and June 1, TransAfrica will host its Third Annual Dinner and the Annual Meeting of members, convened by Board Chairman Richard Hatcher. Ambassador Salim Ahmed Salim, President of the United Nations General Assembly and Permanent Representative to the U.N. from the United Republic of Tanzania, will address the dinner, focusing on growing cooperation between Africa and Afro-America.  There has been a reappraisal of the first 20 years of African independence and prognostication about the future. The emergence of a genuinely free Zimbabwe, the return to civilian rule and the demise of autocrats in several countries spark optimism that political freedom and popular participation will advance during the next decade. However, Africa confronts a serious economic crisis that requires fundamental changes if it is not to undo the considerable political progress. The U.N. study, “The Future of the World Economy,” concluded that Africa, and other parts of the developing world, cannot even begin to narrow the income disparity with the industrialized countries without changing their pattern of indebtedness. Sub-Saharan states have a debt burden of about $30 billion, including Zaire with $4 billion in debt and Ivory Coast has nearly as much, and Zambia half as much. By 2000, half of Africa’s export earnings will go to just meeting the interest charges on this debt. At the invitation of ZANU-PF, Randall Robinson attended Zimbabwe’s independence celebration on April 18-19. TransAfrica organizer Margaret Baylor coordinated, and Mayor Coleman Young and Marc Stepp sponsored, a TransAfrica fundraiser in Detroit attended by some 300 people. Speakers were State Senator Julian Bond, Congressman John Conyers, Rosa Parks, and Ambassador Bias Mookodi of Botswana; a pre-event breakfast was hosted by Catherine Blackwell. Policy Committee Chairman Willard Johnson submitted to the House of Representatives testimony in support of H.R. 6811. On April 6, TransAfrica, Howard University, and the Embassy of Senegal hosted a reception for President Leopold Senghor of Senegal on the occasion of the closing of The Exhibit of Contemporary Art of Senegal. Voluntary staffers Sebron Humphrey, Donna Walker, Felipe Noguera, and William Tutman are organizing a “pressure delivery system” in 153 Congressional districts where blacks compose at least 10% of the electorate; hundreds of letters to Congress have been generated in support of sanctions against South Africa and in opposition to U.S. arms sales to Morocco. The newsletter’s Action Alert asks people to tell their Congressman and Senators that the U.S. should sever economic, culture and diplomatic relations with South Africa, and should increase its foreign assistance to Africa and the Caribbean to $5 billion. The newsletter mentions the Zanzibar Students Union, the Zanzibar Youth Movement, Mayor Thomas Bradley, sportscaster Bryant Gumbel, Ambassador Andrew Young, the International Development Association, and the African Development Bank.
Used by permission of TransAfrica.
Collection: Dean McHenry, Jr. Southern Africa Collection, Michigan State University Libraries Special Collections