Goodbye Colonialism, Farewell Feudalism

Our guest speaker Callum Christie, kindly agreed to provide a talk on his experiences in the Colonial Service whilst serving in Zambia and the Barotseland region of Africa during the late 50s, 60s and 70s. Callum was schooled in Aberdeen, eventually graduating from Aberdeen University in 1958 with a degree in Economics.

Callum and Charles

Following a preparatory year 1958-59, at Oxford University, Callum was selected for the British Colonial Service in Northern Rhodesia, which became independent in 1964 and renamed Zambia. He served as a Provincial Administrator in the Barotseland and other areas in Northern Rhodesia, and from 1970 as the Economist in the Economic Planning Office of Lusaka, the capital of Zambia.

Callum described the last days of an African kingdom which was a British Protectorate for over 70 years. The rulers of Barotseland, in the remote west of Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia), had little idea of the political tsunami that was about to engulf them. Elsewhere in the country, a growing nationalist movement was soon to take power from the British and the white settlers and consequently from the traditional rulers of Barotseland. Callum entertained his audience with stories of his posting fresh from university in 1959 through his letters from home to family and friends and his extensive photographic library.

Charles Gray gave a worthy vote of thanks.