Dominion - Southern Rhodesia

Southern Rhodesia

Southern Rhodesia was a special case in the British Empire. Although it was never a dominion, it was treated as a dominion in many respects. Southern Rhodesia was formed in 1923 out of the territories of the British South Africa Company and established as a self-governing colony with substantial autonomy on the model of the dominions. However, the imperial authorities in London continued to retain direct powers over native affairs. Southern Rhodesia was not included as one of the territories that were mentioned in the 1931 Statute of Westminster although relations with Southern Rhodesia were administered in London through the Dominion Office, not the Colonial Office. When the dominions were first treated as foreign countries by London for the purposes of diplomatic immunity in 1952, Southern Rhodesia was also included in the list of territories concerned. This semi-dominion status continued in Southern Rhodesia even for the ten years, 1953–1963, when it was joined with Northern Rhodesia and Nyasaland in the Central African Federation, even though the latter two continued with their own status as British protectorates. When Northern Rhodesia was given independence in 1964 it adopted the new name of Zambia, and Southern Rhodesia simply reverted to the name Rhodesia. Rhodesia declared unilateral independence from Britain in 1965 as a result of being pressed into accepting the principles of black majority rule. London regarded this state of unilateral declaration of independence as illegal. It applied sanctions and expelled Rhodesia from the sterling area. Nevertheless, Rhodesia continued with its dominion style constitution until 1970, and continued to issue British passports to its citizens. These Rhodesian-issued British passports were only recognised by Portugal and South Africa. In the period from 1965 to 1970, the Rhodesian government continued its loyalty to the Sovereign despite being in a state of rebellion against Her Majesty's government in London. However, in 1970, Rhodesia adopted a republican constitution and in 1980 it was finally granted legal independence by the UK following the transition to black majority rule. The new name of Zimbabwe was then adopted.

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... Southern Rhodesia had the distinction amongst Britain's African colonies of being a self-governing Crown Colony ... As a result most Southern Rhodesians did not regard Great Britain as home but instead regarded Southern Rhodesia as home, though they did recognise cultural ties to Great Britain ... during which period the former Southern Rhodesia was known as Rhodesia) more than half of Rhodesia's population of European descent emigrated mainly to Australia, New Zealand and Canada ...

Famous quotes containing the word southern:

    You mean they could still be living in a primitive state of neurotic irresponsibility?
    —Terry Southern (b. 1924)