Reports in London on Friday (13 January) say that agreement has been reached at the internal settlement talks being held in Salisbury between Rhodesian Prime Minister Ian Smith and Black Nationalist leaders.
GV EXT PAN Independence House.
MV INT Newsmen looking on as Rev. Ndabaningi Sithole answers questions. (2 shots)
GV EXT. Independence House.
MV Sithole leaves grounds of Independence House by car. (2 shots)
MV Bishop Abel Muzorewa leaves in car.
TRANSCRIPT: SITHOLE: "We don't regard the PF after all as the centre of Zimbabwe. It is a foreign political arrangement designed to super-impose upon the people of Zimbabwe certain leaders, who are favourites to certain outside countries."
REPORTER: "Do you believe therefore that if you get a settlement internally, that even without the Patriotic Front, that settlement will be ultimately acceptable internationally?"
SEQ. 2: SITHOLE: "Yes. I believe that. I'm not saying, I am not suggesting, by any stretch of the imagination that the Patriotic Front should not be invited or should not participate. As a matter of fact we are on record as saying the Patriotic Front must be invited. It may turn out that the invitation, they turn down the invitation. That is their business. But we shall have done our duty as honest men to see that everybody, who matters, who is connected with the problem is invited."
A statement issued by the Reverend Sithole's African National Council said that they had given their leader and his delegation "a tough time" in case they conceded too much on White representation. They said that after lengthy and heart-searching consideration they had decided that the question of White representation should not be allowed to encroach on the sovereignty of the Black majority-rule government, nor inhibit the effective transfer of power from the White minority. This was a reference to the length of time White safeguards should exist in Parliament and to a determination among many nationalists that a White bloc in the House should not be strong enough to inhibit day-to-day moves by a Black Government. According to Reuter it is believed the Smith government want a guarantee for the Whites of 15 years.
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Background: Reports in London on Friday (13 January) say that agreement has been reached at the internal settlement talks being held in Salisbury between Rhodesian Prime Minister Ian Smith and Black Nationalist leaders. The reports, quoting "authoritative sources", say that Black and White leaders have at last agreed on the size of White representation in the Parliament of a Black-majority ruled Zimbabwe. Reuter, quoting sources close to the talks say there will be 28 seats for Whites in a theoretical 100-seat House.
SYNOPSIS: After Wednesday's session, the Reverend Ndabaningi Sithole, of the African National Council, was asked about Patriotic Front participation.
The externally-based Patriotic Front is not represented at the talks.
Those Nationalists who are talking to Mr. Smith are anxious not to be accused of a sell-out, and already there are talks of a split in the Sithole camp over the 28 reserved White seats in a Zimbabwe Parliament.
According to Reuter, the United African Nationalist Council of Bishop Abel Muzorewa, is prepared to guarantee the Whites 28 seats for eight years. Some Sithole supporters insist on only five years.