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Salient. Official Newspaper of Victoria University Students Association. Volume 40, Number 3. March 14, 1977.

NKOMO — ZAPU (Zimbabwe African People's Union)

NKOMO — ZAPU (Zimbabwe African People's Union)

ZAPU under the leadership of Nkomo always had a reformist perspective and little real committment to armed struggle. Nkomo's desire for personal power was particularly revealed when though he had committed his party to membership of the enlarged ANC he attempted to pursue secret negotiations with Smith and on account of this was expelled from the ANC. He then held an 'ANC Congress" in Salisbury in Spet. 1975 to elect himself President. Smith provided free transport forthe "delegates" and welcomed Nkomo's election as the most "responsible" of the African leaders. Nkomo attempted negotiations with Smith up till March 1976 with a negotiating team that included a lawyer from Lonrho the powerful British multi-national with substantial interests in Southern Africa.

It is important to realise that though Nkomo fulfills all the conditions of a "moderate" leader his attempts to negotiate with Smith failed because of his obvious lack of credibility inside the country and because sufficient pressure had not yet been brought to bear upon Smith. His moves at this time though backed by imperialism and the Front-line states could not succeed because they were so blatantly in isolation from the ANC under Muzorewa and Sithole who had the support of the majority of the people and the new recruits to the army. Nkomo was the only Zimbabwean consulted by Kissinger on his round of "shuttle diplomacy" leading up to Geneva.