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Maxwell Akansina Aziabah

Ghanaian prime minister and sociologist, was born in Wenchi in the British Gold Coast colony on 11 July 1913. His mother was Nana Yaa Nsowaa, a prominent member of the royal Safoase Yefre matrilineage of Wenchi, and his father was Yaw Bosea. His mother later remarried, not long after Kofi was born. It is believed that Busia grew up under the tutelage of his stepfather, Kwabena Janso, since his biological father had little to do with him. At age six he was baptized Joseph Busia, a misspelling of his biological father’s surname that he would retain throughout his career.

As a boy Busia developed a keen interest in religious studies, which was bolstered by his contact with Wesleyan Methodist missionaries, notably the Reverend William Whittle and his wife Alice Whittle, a teacher. Busia impressed the Whittles, who encouraged his academic interests. In 1922 the Whittles brought Busia with ...


Martha King

Born a member of the royal family of Wenchi, Kofi Abrefa Busia attended the Kumasi Methodist and Mfantsipim Secondary Schools and Wesley College. He received a B.A. degree in politics, philosophy, and economics and then an M.A. degree in social anthropology from the University of Oxford. Busia wrote his doctoral thesis, titled The Position of the Chief in the Modern Political System of Ashanti, in 1951. He held teaching positions at the Ghana University College at Legon in the African studies and sociology departments.

Busia left the university to devote himself to politics in 1956. In the fall of 1957, he formed the United Party, composed of different parties in opposition to President Kwame Nkrumah He was outspoken in opposition to Nkrumah s government Busia fled to England in fear of the increasingly repressive government In exile Busia maintained his opposition to the Nkrumah regime ...


James Jankowski

Egyptian educator, politician, and briefly prime minister, was born into a landowning family. He was educated at the Higher Teacher’s College and the Khedivial Law School. Fluent in English and French, he was a member of Egypt’s cosmopolitan elite of the early twentieth century. Trained as an educator and lawyer, he served as headmaster of the Muhammad ʿAli School in Cairo, later taught mathematics, geography, and history at al-Azhar, and also worked as a legal adviser in the Administration of Awqaf.

Sabri began his national political career as a supporter of the Wafd Party. Elected to the Chamber of Deputies in 1926 as a Wafdist deputy, in 1930 he separated from the Wafd by endorsing the autocratic regime of the anti Wafdist prime minister Ismaʿil Sidqi For the remainder of his political career Sabri was an independent formally unaffiliated with any of Egypt s political parties Elected the ...


Sabelo J. Ndlovu-Gatsheni

Zimbabwean political activist, was born in Invercargill, New Zealand, on 13 July 1908. His father was a Scottish bricklayer who had immigrated to New Zealand in the 1860s. He was educated at Otago University and Glen Leith Theological College in New Zealand as well as at the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa. He started work at a family business known as Thomas Todd & Sons before becoming a minister; he was ordained in 1931 in the Evangelical Order of the Associated Churches of Christ. He married Jean Grace Wilson.

In 1934 he migrated to Southern Rhodesia present day Zimbabwe to continue with missionary work He became at teacher at Dadaya Mission School in the Shabani now Zvishavane district eighty miles east of Bulawayo On arrival he bought a farm known as Hononui Ranch which would be his home for the rest of his life Due to ...


Raised in southern Chad, François Tombalbaye was educated in Brazzaville, Congo, and was one of the few Chadians to have obtained a secondary education by the end of World War II (1939–1945). While working as a teacher in 1947, Tombalbaye helped organize the Parti Progressiste Tchadien (PPT or Chadian Progressive Party), the Chadian branch of the African Democratic Rally, an interterritorial political party across French West Africa. Tombalbaye’s political career prospered after 1952. He was elected to the regional legislature and also began to climb the ranks of the PPT leadership. Tombalbaye represented Chad in the 1957 General Council for French Equatorial Africa and in 1959 he became leader of the PPT and Chad’s prime minister. Tombalbaye led Chad to independence in 1960 and became its first president. In his first years in power he worked to isolate and eliminate all political rivals, and in 1962 ...


Jeremy Rich

Chadian politician, was born in the village of Bessada, Chad, on 5 June 1918. This town was part of the southern Chadian Sara-speaking domain. His father was a prominent trader, and Tombalbaye’s family had the means to ensure he received a fairly high level of education. He attended a primary school in Sarh run by Protestant missionaries and secondary school in Brazzaville, the capital of the region then known as French Equatorial Africa. Once he finished his studies, he worked as a teacher in Protestant mission schools in Sarh, N’Djamena, Koumra (close to his hometown), and Kyabé. Tombalbaye formed a chapter of the Parti Progressiste Tchadienne (PPT; Chadian Progressive Party) in 1946 in Sarh where he rallied members of his clan as well as other Sara speakers to the party The PPT was initially led by French West Indian administrator Gabriel Lisette who presented the PPT as a ...