Malawi and Southern Africa: A Study of the Economic and Political Relationships Between Malawi and the White Minority Regimes of South Africa, Rhodesia, and the Portuguese Regime in Mozambique
Thesis DT 3.5 1976 S675
iv, 105 leaves; 29 cm.
Malawi's relationships with the minority white regimes of South Africa, Rhodesia and the Portuguese regime in Mozambique are generally discussed in terms of Malawi's geographic position and its historic ties with these regimes. Much of the literature further states that these ties are necessary for Malawian development. This thesis attempts to analyze these assertions and goes beyond them to prove that Malawi's foreign policy in regard to the settler regimes of Southern Africa was not inevitable or necessary for the development of the country.
While acknowledging the important role that geographic position and historical ties have in shaping Malawi's relationships with the minority white regimes the thesis shows that alternatives, which could have been used to disengage Malawi from the minority white nexus were present. However, Dr. Hastings Kamuzu Banda, the President for Life of Malawi, decided that Malawi will have cordial and cooperative relations with the minority regimes. The settler regimes, especially South Africa, desire the relationships as much Dr. Banda.
The regimes view their relationships with Malawi as serving definite purposes which directly benefit them. Politically, the relationships have influenced Dr. Banda to give support to the regimes in international forums such as the United Nations and the Organization of African Unity. Strategically the regimes view the relationships as integrating Malawi into the buffer zone against the African liberation movements which are designed to end the minority white rule and institute majority rule African rule. Economically the regimes view the relationships as profitable and in the case of South Africa Malawi is a potential door which can open the entire African market to the sale of its products.
Dr. Banda views the relationships with the minority white regimes as benefiting Malawi, but the main benefits go only to a numerically small portion of the population because he has decided that Malawi will develop along capitalist lines instead of following a socialist model. Since Malawi has been underdeveloped through colonialism its people must be the focus of its development. This study shows that Malawi's relationships with the white minority regimes of Southern Africa do not substantially address the needs of the people of Malawi; therefore the relationships should either be revised or terminated.