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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 ...


Leland Conley Barrows

What a life filled with ambiguity and paradox was that of Jomo Kenyatta (1894–1878), the first president of independent Kenya. In many ways he was a modernizer; however, he defended the practice of female circumcision. Although in this and in other respects he was a Kikuyu traditionalist, he recognized that modern nation-building required citizens of African countries to renounce or at least transcend their tribal loyalties. He was an early believer in pan-Africanism, though his support for it after the independence of Kenya was at best rhetorical. Kenyatta was a polemicist who praised socialism in various media, including the Daily Worker but he became a major capitalist at home Kenyatta s anti colonial credentials were impeccable yet he owed much of his political ascension to British blundering whereby he was held responsible for the Mau Mau outbreak imprisoned unjustly and enabled to emerge as a prison graduate ...


Richard Pankhurst

Ethiopian statesman, prime minister, and writer, was born the son of Balambaras Endalkachew Abreqe, a respected warrior, and Weyzero Abonesh Tekle Maryam, in the district of Addis Addisgé, near Tegulet in northern Shewa, which had become prestigious during the reign of Emperor Menilek. His maternal uncle was one of that monarch’s principal noblemen, Ras Tesemma Nadew, later regent for Lij Iyasu. Mekonnen received a traditional Ethiopian church education, partly at the renowned church of Debre Libanos, and was an accomplished traditional church artist. He also learned French at the then new Menilek II school in Addis Ababa.

Joining the Ethiopian government service in 1916, Mekonnen held a number of different posts, including inspector of the Jibuti-Addis Ababa railway company, kentiba, or mayor, of Addis Ababa, deputy minister of the interior, and governor of Illubabor, with the title of dejazmach. In 1924 he accompanied Regent Tafari Makonnen the ...


Britta Behrendt

also known as Jandi Paula and Frater Alexander Paula, was born on 2 May 1937, in Curaçao. His mother, Tomasa Juana Fransisca, made straw hats and worked as a servant in the Jewish family of Shon Mongui Maduro, and his father, Jan Sebastian Paula (“Papa Jan”), worked at the harbor. Paula was of African descent and born out of wedlock as Alejandro Felippe Fransisca. From the age of 3 he lived with his godmother. His father acknowledged Paula as his son in 1945 and married Tomasa in 1957. In 1966 Paula married Monica, and they had two children, Brent and Melanie.

The Catholic Church played a major role in Paula s education he attended the Catholic school of the Fraters of Tilburg Bewaarschool Wishi on Curaçao then the Catholic junior high school Meer uitgebreid lager onderwijs MULO St Thomas College in order to become a priest He also ...


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 ...


John Gilmore

Historian and politician born in Port of Spain, Trinidad. In 1931 he won a government scholarship, which took him the following year to the University of Oxford, where, after his first degree, he completed a doctorate in history. His Inward Hunger (1969) includes an interesting description of his experiences as a colonial student at Oxford and the prejudices he encountered. From 1939 to 1948 he lived mainly in the United States, where he taught at Howard University and worked for the Anglo‐American Caribbean Commission (both in Washington DC). He returned to live in Port of Spain in 1948, but continued to work for the Caribbean Commission until his resignation in 1955.

In 1956 Williams became a full time politician founding the People s National Movement Electoral success later the same year meant that he led the government of Trinidad and Tobago successively as Chief Minister ...