|Governor of Southern Rhodesia|
Flag of the Governor of Southern Rhodesia (1924–1951)
|Style||His Excellency The Right Honourable|
|Residence||Government House, Salisbury|
|Formation||1 October 1923|
|First holder||The Rt Hon. Sir John Chancellor|
|Final holder||The Lord Soames|
|Abolished||18 April 1980|
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politics and government of
The Governor of Southern Rhodesia was the representative of the British Monarch in the self-governing colony of Southern Rhodesia from 1923 to 1980. The Governor was appointed by The Crown and acted as the local head of state, receiving instructions from the British Government.
The Governor was also Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces and as such, in theory at least, exercised considerable influence over the running of the colony and its government, but in practice, the Governor's main function was to maintain a satisfactory relationship between the British and Southern Rhodesian Governments and acted in an advisory capacity most of the time. From 1951, however, in contrast to other colonies, the British government was represented in Southern Rhodesia by a High Commissioner in Salisbury.
When Southern Rhodesia was part of the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland, the position of the Governor remained unchanged, but as Salisbury became the capital of the Federation, the Governor General resided at Government House, previously the Governor's official residence.During this time, the Governor of Southern Rhodesia resided at Governor's Lodge in the suburb of Highlands.
Following the Unilateral Declaration of Independence in 1965, the government of Ian Smith ceased to recognise the authority of the then Governor, Sir Humphrey Gibbs, and appointed Clifford Dupont to exercise the Governor's powers as Officer Administering the Government.
However, Gibbs continued to occupy Government House, asserting his position as the Queen's de jure representative, and did not resign from the post until June 1969, following the decision of white voters in a referendum to approve a new constitution declaring Rhodesia, as Southern Rhodesia had become more commonly known, a republic.
In 1977, Field Marshal The Lord Carver was designated Resident Commissioner for Rhodesia, but he resigned fourteen months later.
The office of Governor remained vacant until 11 December 1979, when Lord Soames assumed the post, following the signing of the Lancaster House Agreement, under which Southern Rhodesia would achieve de jure independence as Zimbabwe on 18 April 1980.
In common with most other British colonies, the flag used by the Governor, as the Sovereign's representative in Southern Rhodesia was initially a Union Flag with a white roundel in the centre, charged with the shield from the colony's arms granted on 11 August 1924. Unique among the flags of the Governors of British colonies, this shield of Arms was not surrounded by the customary wreath. This flag was adopted on 1 October 1924 and was flown until 30 July 1951.
On 31 July 1951, a new flag was put into use for the Governor of Southern Rhodesia. This was dark blue and charged in the centre with a Royal Crown, its height being four-sevenths of the hoist. Initially the Tudor Crown would have been used, but after her accession to the throne in 1952, Elizabeth II indicated her preference for St Edward's Crown, and this version would have been used thereafter. Although the colony had attained 'Responsible Government' in 1923, it was never a fully fledged Dominion, and so did not have a Governor-General, whose flag in other Dominions would be dark blue, charged in the centre with the Royal Crest above a Crown, with the name of the Dominion written in a yellow scroll below.
|Term of office||Monarch||Prime Minister|
|Took office||Left office||Time in office|
|1|| Sir John Chancellor |
|1 October 1923||15 June 1928||4 years, 258 days||George V|| Coghlan |
|–|| Sir Murray Bisset |
|15 June 1928||24 November 1928||162 days||Moffat|
|2|| Sir Cecil Hunter-Rodwell |
|24 November 1928||1 May 1934||5 years, 158 days||Moffat|
|–|| Fraser Russell |
|1 May 1934||8 January 1935||252 days||Huggins|
|3|| Sir Herbert Stanley |
|8 January 1935||8 January 1942||7 years, 0 days||George V|
|–|| Fraser Russell |
|8 January 1942||10 December 1942||336 days||George VI|
|4|| Sir Evelyn Baring |
|10 December 1942||26 October 1944||1 year, 321 days|
|–|| Sir Robert James Hudson |
|26 October 1944||20 February 1945||117 days|
|5|| Sir Campbell Tait |
|20 February 1945||2 February 1946||347 days|
|–|| Sir Fraser Russell |
|2 February 1946||19 July 1946||167 days|
|–|| Sir Robert James Hudson |
|19 July 1946||14 January 1947||179 days|
|6|| Sir John Noble Kennedy |
|14 January 1947||21 November 1953||6 years, 311 days||George VI|
|–|| Sir Robert Clarkson Tredgold |
|21 November 1953||26 November 1954||1 year, 5 days||Elizabeth II||Todd|
|7|| Sir Peveril William-Powlett |
|26 November 1954||28 December 1959||5 years, 32 days||Todd|
|8|| Sir Humphrey Gibbs |
|28 December 1959||24 June 1969||9 years, 178 days||Whitehead|
|Position vacant (24 June 1969 – 11 December 1979)|
|9|| The Lord Soames |
|11 December 1979||18 April 1980||129 days||Position abolished|
For continuation after independence, see: President of Zimbabwe
Rhodesia was an unrecognised state in southern Africa from 1965 to 1979, equivalent in territory to modern Zimbabwe. Rhodesia was the de facto successor state to the British colony of Southern Rhodesia, which had been self-governing since achieving responsible government in 1923. A landlocked nation, Rhodesia was bordered by South Africa to the south, Bechuanaland to the southwest, Zambia to the northwest, and Mozambique to the east.
The Colony of Southern Rhodesia was a land-locked self-governing British Crown colony in southern Africa, established in 1923 and consisting of British South Africa Company territories lying south of the Zambezi River. The region was informally known as south Zambesia until annexed by Britain at the behest of Cecil John Rhodes's business, the British South Africa Company. The bounding territories were Bechuanaland (Botswana), Northern Rhodesia (Zambia), Moçambique (Mozambique), Transvaal Republic.
The Unilateral Declaration of Independence (UDI) was a statement adopted by the Cabinet of Rhodesia on 11 November 1965, announcing that Rhodesia, a British territory in southern Africa that had governed itself since 1923, now regarded itself as an independent sovereign state. The culmination of a protracted dispute between the British and Rhodesian governments regarding the terms under which the latter could become fully independent, it was the first unilateral break from the United Kingdom by one of its colonies since the United States Declaration of Independence in 1776. The UK, the Commonwealth and the United Nations all deemed Rhodesia's UDI illegal, and economic sanctions, the first in the UN's history, were imposed on the breakaway colony. Amid near-complete international isolation, Rhodesia continued as an unrecognised state with the assistance of South Africa and Portugal.
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Sir Roland "Roy" Welensky, was a Northern Rhodesian politician and the second and last Prime Minister of the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland.
Clifford Walter Dupont, GCLM, ID was a Rhodesian politician who served in the internationally unrecognised positions of Officer Administrating the Government and President. Born in London and qualifying as a solicitor, Dupont served during the Second World War as an officer of the British Royal Artillery in North Africa before first visiting Southern Rhodesia in 1947. He returned a year later, started a ranch and emigrated full-time during the early 1950s, by which time the country had become a territory of the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland.
Sir Humphrey Vicary Gibbs,, was the penultimate Governor of the colony of Southern Rhodesia (1959–1969) who served through, and opposed, the Unilateral Declaration of Independence (UDI) in 1965.
The flag of Rhodesia changed with political changes in the country. At independence in 1965 the recently adopted flag of Southern Rhodesia was used, until a new flag was adopted in 1968. The 1968 flag remained the flag when the republic was declared in 1970.
Sir Edgar Cuthbert Fremantle Whitehead,, OBE, was a Rhodesian politician. He was a longstanding member of the Southern Rhodesian Legislative Assembly, although his career was interrupted by other posts and by illness. In particular he had poor eyesight, and wore very thick glasses, and later suffered deafness whilst in office. As an ally of Sir Roy Welensky, he was Prime Minister of Southern Rhodesia from 1958 to 1962. His government was defeated in the 1962 general election by the Rhodesian Front.
The Rhodesian Air Force (RhAF) was an air force based in Salisbury which represented several entities under various names between 1935 and 1980: originally serving the British self-governing colony of Southern Rhodesia, it was the air arm of the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland between 1953 and 31 December 1963; of Southern Rhodesia once again from 1 January 1964; and of the unrecognised nation of Rhodesia following its Unilateral Declaration of Independence from Britain on 11 November 1965.
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Iain Peter Butchart, a cricketer, was born in Bulawayo on 9 May 1960. Broadcasting of television started in November. The Zimbabwe African People's Union (ZAPU) was formed in 1961 with Joshua Nkomo as leader. The Rhodesian Front won the general elections of 1962 on 14 December. Winston Field then became the Prime Minister of Rhodesia. The Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU) was formed in 1963 with Robert Mugabe as Secretary. The Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland was dissolved on 31 December 1963 as Zambia and Malawi moved towards independence. The government placed Joshua Nkomo, leader and founder of the Zimbabwe African Peoples Union, under restriction on 16 April 1964. Northern Rhodesia gained its independence and Southern Rhodesia became the colony of Rhodesia on 24 October.
The Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland was a colonial federation that consisted of three southern African territories—the self-governing British colony of Southern Rhodesia and the British protectorates of Northern Rhodesia and Nyasaland—between 1953 and 1963.
Southern Rhodesia first participated as Rhodesia in the Olympic Games in 1928, when it sent two boxers to Amsterdam, both of whom were eliminated in their second bout. The dominion did not appear at the Games under a Rhodesian banner until 1960, when it sent a fourteen-athlete delegation as part of the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland. In Rome, two sailors, Alan David Butler and Christopher Bevan, finished fourth, which was Rhodesia's best result until it became Zimbabwe in 1980. Southern Rhodesia sent 29 competitors, including a field hockey team, to the 1964 Summer Games, which was its last Olympic appearance under the Rhodesian banner.
The President of Rhodesia was the head of state of Rhodesia from 1970 to 1979. As Rhodesia reckoned itself as a parliamentary republic rather than a presidential republic at the time, the president's post was almost entirely ceremonial, and the real power continued to be vested in Rhodesia's Prime Minister, Ian Smith. Two individuals held the office of president, while two others served as acting Presidents. All were white people of British descent.
The political history of Zimbabwe starts with the arrival of white people to what was dubbed Southern Rhodesia in the 1890s. The country was initially run by an administrator appointed by the British South Africa Company. The prime ministerial role was first created in October 1923, when the country achieved responsible government, with Sir Charles Coghlan as its first Premier. The third Premier, George Mitchell, renamed the post Prime Minister in 1933.
The flag of Southern Rhodesia was a blue ensign, later changed to a sky-blue ensign, with the coat of arms of Southern Rhodesia on it. The flag was in use in Southern Rhodesia from 1923 to 1953 and from 1964 to 1965. It was also used by the unrecognised Rhodesia from 1965 to 1968. The flag was initially used unofficially internally before being approved for use outside of the colony by the Colonial Office in 1937. The colour was changed to sky blue in 1964 to protest the treatment of Southern Rhodesia after its inclusion in the failed Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland.
The Bledisloe Commission, also known as the Rhodesia-Nyasaland Royal Commission, was a Royal Commission, appointed in 1937 and undertaking its enquiries between 1937 and 1939. to examine the possible closer union of the three British territories in Central Africa, Southern Rhodesia, Northern Rhodesia and Nyasaland. These territories were to some degree economically inter-dependent, and it was suggested that an association would promote their rapid development. Its chairman was Lord Bledisloe.
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