A mass rally at the African township of Highfield - just outside of Salisbury -- on Saturday (20 November) demonstrated support for the Joshua Nkomo/Robert Mugabe "Patriotic Front".
GV: Ariston Chambati addressing rally. (2 shots)
SCU: Chambati speaking (9 shots)
SV PAN: crowd applauding.
SV: women in crowd dancing and singing. (3 shots)
SV: Chambati joins dancing.
CHAMBATI: "Well I think the negotiations are being carried out between the delegates and the British government. So, I think in accommodation an agreement has got to be between the nationalists and the British government. I think this is what things are in actual fact. A date has been fixed by the British government, our own delegations looking at this. We haven't had word yet, I think they are looking at the possibility of having the discussions and completing them within that period of time. But we feel it is very important psychologically to fix a date and work towards a date -- the same reason we demanded a date for independence, fix a date and you don't renege from your responsibility once you've done that. We'd have an element of commitment."
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: A mass rally at the African township of Highfield - just outside of Salisbury -- on Saturday (20 November) demonstrated support for the Joshua Nkomo/Robert Mugabe "Patriotic Front". The rally was addressed by the Front's deputy secretary-general, Ariston Chambati. The meeting followed criticism of the behaviour of Mr. Nkomo and Mr. Mugabe during the Rhodesian constitutional conference in Geneva.
SYNOPSIS: The criticism came over the Patriotic Front's insistence that Rhodesia be given legal independence within 12 months.
The Reverend Ndabaningi Sithole -- another Rhodesian nationalist leader -- said Mr. Nkomo and Mr. Mugabe were "labouring under indecision" in Geneva. He said their insistence of fixing a date for independence was not substantive but mechanical. His criticism didn't worry supporters at the rally on Saturday.
The gave the Patriotic Front a complete vote of confidence.
Mr. Chambati also appealed for "calm" at the rally following police reports and clashes between rival groups of the African National Council in Rhodesia during the week. Four incidents, which involved threats and minor property damage, were blamed on Bishop Abel Muzorewa's supporter -- the other two on Mr. Nkomo's faction.