The Dzhambul of South Africa?

Copyright © 2001 by Hugo S. Cunningham
Italicized text from Hepple (cited below), who in turn extracted it from official South African sources that might or might not be copyrighted.

first posted y10722
redone y10722

Source for specific cites on this page: Alexander Hepple, Verwoerd, Penguin Books, Baltimore MD, 1967; paper, 253 pp.

Introductory notes

Dr. Hendrik Frensch Verwoerd (1901-1966), Prime Minister of South Africa 1958-1966, was the brains behind Apartheid. Some might compare his intellect and firmness of will with that of the Great Lenin, except that linking the name of the Great Lenin with an unregenerate fascist would be disgusting, worthy of the supreme measure.

Verwoerd was South Africa's "Minister of Native Affairs" (responsible for government policy toward the voteless African majority) 1950-1958. His patronage powers in that position presumably inspired the ode below.

Some might believe the style is similar to that of Dzhambul, but Dzhambul wrote of his love for N.I. Yezhov and especially the Great Leader and Teacher voluntarily, while this H. Kharibe wrote under the gunpoint of fascist torturers.

According to Mr. Hepple (p. 108), the ode appeared in the June 1955 issue of "Bantu" (a newspaper published and distributed to black petty-officialdom by Dr. Verwoerd's ministry) in June 1955, written in "the vernacular" (Zulu? Xhosa? or what?) and with an English translation.

Dr. Verwoerd indicated his ideas of "proper education" during a House of Assembly debate on 17 September 1953 (Hepple, p. 124):

Dr. Verwoerd might have taken credit as an early advocate of "Afrocentric" education programs, sheltering non-white schoolchildren from the alien Western curriculum of missionary schools. He forfeited such credit, however, by making no attempt to hide his disdain for non-whites.

The Kharibe ode provoked ridicule by Dr. Verwoerd's political opponents, to such an extent he eventually felt compelled to deny having authorized it. Supposedly it was a spontaneous offering of the masses.

Some works by Dzhambul:

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