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- Africa in London
by Charles J. Patterson
NOT FOR PUBLICATION INSTITUTE OF CURRENT ORLD AFFAIRS CJP November Africa London Cornwall Gardens London S W England Mr Richard H Nolte Institute Current World Affairs Madison Avenue New York New York Dear Mr Nolte My immersion Africa London began burst black chauffeur driven lolls Royces happy sounds High Lifeand taste internal politics Federation Nigeria All place residence Chief Akintoye Coker Agent General Western Nigeria United Kingdom Chief Coker aging stately London mansion across Kensington Palace Princess Margaret Earl Snowdon The sleek shiny lolls IKoyces pulled front portico Agent General discharged African passengers flowing robes shades colours English chauffeurs uniforms parked courtyard await return their passengers They stood conversations current state English cricket pause other peculiarly English things In house invitation handed young African civil servant dressed would uniform African civil servants London three piece Walking softly carpeted Ballroom stepped through galaxy colourful magnificent swinging robes punctuated business suits The laughter atmosphere relaxed heady In middle surrounded Ministers students clerks stood guest honour Chief Obafemi Awolowo Leader Action Group Opposition Federal Parliament Nigeria Awo called holds Bachelor Commerce Degree Law Degree colleges Britain In under Awo leadership Action Group being called programme based Freedom Life abundant It demanded freedom British ignorance disease This powerful minority political party based Yoruba dominated Western Region Nigeria It holds government Western Region pushes vigorously F ederal power Before becoming Leader Opposition Federal House Representatives ChiefAwolowo served Premier Western Region Awo agbada flowed floor turned right though concealed beneath clothing hdden piv0t The warmth smile conversation flowig clothes seemed obvious astute politician through blood political wherewithal political battle still My companion Abraham Ngidi young refugee journalist frorn South Africa particular interest Chief Awolowo He questioned about conditions South Africa particularly interested South Africa London Ngidi spoke fervently travels hardships friendships encountered He dwelt length Ghana where received particularly At point conversation Awo vigorously asserted indeed other African countries particularly Nigeria ention refugees South Africa Angola He attributed lackof Nigeria gotten freedom handed platter meant there enough appreciation suffering their fellow Africans going through attain liberty independence When Chief finally turned burden inquiry things going brothers United States brothers coming Africa contribute struggle economic political viability My response first point detailed knowledgeable I think accurate As second point recurring question return Black Exodus answer vague uncertain uneasy Perhaps guilty perception black ingathering exiles motivated string fuzzy platitudes During exchange guests stood close listen Chief Awolowo turned Someone Ngidi I found ourselves surrounded other Nigerians interested problems color South Africa United States So there music swirling gowns clinking glasses continued dialogue place Black Man world However music consumption cocktails turned attention whole reception lighter things music phonograph turned dancing started The politics equalled High Life As Abraham Ngidi Zulu companion I reception offered Honourable J Ola 0digun Ministerof Lands Housing Western Nigeria described Minister Inanimate Things Spealing Chief Obafemi Awol0wo On right Chief Akinoye Coker Office Agent General Western Nigeria London Mr 0digun going party asked cared We jumped chance He ushered black chauffeur driven Roils Royces As drove through London night animated discussion politics Nigeria The Minister Inanimate Things indicated people Western Region especially Yoruba somewhat restive under political domination numerous tradition ridden Moslem Hausas North He shared others party reception There evidence strong feeling progress modernization Nigeria would proceed faster there method whereby numerous Northerners political hegemony federal politics could broken We arrived party persons reception preceded including number other Ministers Western Region Here however there larger proportion younger people students there almost political conversation It High Life American The party which given honour Nigerian student leaving Harvard Medical School ended around clock morning The Yoruba Minister Inanimate Things gathered SoUth African Zulu Negro America black limousine driven English chauffeur headed happily This Africa Londo almost wholly African There Europeans either reception farewell party Basically these internal affairs Later month however I Africa London within framework Commonwealth Seventh Parliamentary Conference It circumstance ceremony everyone seemed Marquis Gholmondely Lord Great Chamberlain His Highness Oba Samuel Akinsanya Odemo Ishara There handsome Ishmael Bun Jobe Gambia wearing velvet chieftain robes black white Honourable Kofi Baako Minister Parliamentary Affairs Gha lounge There Alhai Isa Kiata Minister Education Nigeria drapedinavoluminous ofdeepmaroonwithcream stripes topped flowing headgear possessed colours rainbows peeking under white shoes reminiscent white bucks Amer college There Paramount Chief The Honourable Raymond B S Koker O B E Minister without Portfolio Sierra Leone And there others Uganda Tanganyika Kenya Gambia Nyasaland There great Westminster Hall Africa mingled Dukes Viscounts United Kingdom Sikhs Hindus India Senators Canada bowed homage Her Majesty Queen Nii abeth II Head Commonwealth The prominence Africa Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference exhibited presence Honourable Raymond Amanze Njoku Federal Minister Transport Aviation Nigeria Vice Chairman General Council Commonwealth Parliamentary Association Awaiting arrival Queen stood stage between Earl Munster Deputy Chairman United Kingdom Branch Commonwealth Parliamentary Association Sir Roland Iobinson Chairman General Council CommonwealthParliamentaryAssociation ThetwomenoftheUnitedKingdom dressed somber black formal morning clothes Njoku stood between dressed startling simplicity cream colored robes It striking symptomatic symbolic Following welcoming speeches Queen Prime Minister Mr Harold Macmillan Mr Njoku product Universities London Cambridge arose respond Association It speech performance grace dignity With trace sycophancy praised thanked Queen sincerity gloried parliamentary heritage Great Britain The applause indicated Nigerian conquest vaulted Westminster Hall Among British Hall there seemed quiet satisfaction See badly after colonial masters If truly there justifiable sentiment fraught danger Federation Nigeria Such approbation former colonial master great asset African continent The trumpets Queen Duke departed vibrant versation ended symbolic juxtaposition Empire Commonwealth I Great Hall With Chief Akint0ye Coker We stood waited until Rolls Royce arrived carpeted So I talking about Africa Establishment London there another Africa London struggle uhuru In better areas London G01ders Green large house owned Southern Rhodesia National Democratic Party It house coming going One night there party nurse going graduate training hospital Trenton New Jersey Another night there reception Vice President N D P At another there meeting Southern Rhodesian Students studying around London Leopold Takawira Director Internal International Affairs National Democratic Party lives house family Numerous guests especially Southern Rhodesian students areencourag edtOcomeand makethehouseinGoldersGreentheir Takawira explained something which helpful students living strange provides N D P chance introduce aspirations goals Party students important their lives history their country There great laughter warmth house Golders Green Its grimmer basic purposes demonstrated Sunday afternoon IsSentthere JoshuaNkomo President GeneraloftheN D P London opening British Parliament therewas scale debate British African policy One items included debate constitution Southern Khodesia I office Nk0mo Takawira series conferences stream visitors about various strategies plans actions It intensity dedication There another house London where African fight uhuru Lookingatitfzomtheoutsideonewouldnotassociatethiskin dofedifice revolutionary activity It Africa Unity House It fully efurbished bricked London mansion located another London desirable areas completely dedicated ideal Pan Africanism It headquarters Committee AfricanOrganisations The building bought President Kwame Nkrumah Ghana presented tothe Committee Crowded cramped headquarters burned Africa Unity House place elegance There plush carpets floor dazzling quilted wallpaper furniture taste modern conveniences kitchen communication My first visit toAfricaUn ityHousewasinthecompanyoChangoMachyo chairmanof Committee African Organisations student Econ omics London School oEconomics president Uganda Students Association We reception given during Uganda constitutional talks London Subsequently hehadstopped offanumberotimes visitandthetwo ofushadtalkedmany times about Africa One after obvious momentary hesitation invited lunch Africa Unity House It turned luncheon I invited luncheon meeting Committee African Organisa tions The guest honour Kwesi Armah High Commissioner Ghana Britain formerly chairman Committee African Organisations The luncheon meeting inaugurated opening restaurant Africa Unity House I sawmany familiar faces people Nigeria people Were Studying Cambridge Oxford Africans Kenya Swazliland Aricans South Africa political leaders diplomats nurses doctors While eating West Africa I spoke Mr Armah planning United States exact moment deeply involved question whether should scheduled visit Ghana My longest conversation J J Nqutu leader Swazliland Progressive Party completed months America He laughed remembered tasting Budwieser first smiled talked about hospitable reception frowned spoke reaction American racial problems He generally pleased visit America spite unhappiness about problems there There however something which disturbed quite deepiy reception occasionally received Negro Americans As example concern visit President major Negro Universities South He Presidcats evening After talking while President brought grand pointed Nclufu See there African Nqutu discon certed It something It feeling ignorance insensitivity consistent attitudes American Negroes towards Africans Again again found himself subject display always quite crudely Africa Unity House center African comings goings London It dedicated Nkrumah supporters ofthememberslookonNkrumahasthesaviorofAfrica JomoKenyattaisthe other hangs walls Like house Golders Green there laughter anything there sense impatience anger There Uganda Constitutional Conference lrincess Elizabeth Toro There African nights house nights which I would invite number people areas Africa dinner conversation There African Society London School Economics where I found myself trying desperately explain million American Negroes would returning Africa There indeed kfrica London London surely playing ground training ground thebattlegroundotheAfricanrevolution Most sincerely Charles J Patterson Received New York November