Thank you everyone at Kafuro Primary school for your report about independence day celebrations and for your questions which created a lot of debate in our PSHE lesson. We have been doing quite a lot of work recently about wants and needs and this undoubtedly influenced our answers.
1. Do you also celebrate independence?
Britain doesn’t celebrate its independence as it has been independent for nearly 1000 years. The last successful invasion of Britain was in 1066 by the Normans under the leadership of William the Conquerer. Each country in the UK has a national day. Wales has St David’s Day on March 1st, Ireland has St Patrick’s Day on March 17th, Scotland has St Andrew’s Day on November 30th and England has St George’s Day on April 23rd. Some of the children take part in celebrations for St George’s Day through their local cubs or girl guides groups, but on the whole we don’t really celebrate St George’s Day. St Patrick’s Day is a big deal in Ireland and a national holiday.
2. Which other powerful countries did Britain colonise?
The children were aware of many countries that have been under British rule at some point: Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand, USA, India and large parts of Africa. At one point Britain controlled about one – third of the world.
3. Why do you think African country independence was a tug of war to regain from the British?
The children thought that African countries would’ve wanted independence so that they could make their own decisions. The children also realised that after World War Two Britain was bankrupt and couldn’t afford to run its empire so although it didn’t want to let go of the countries it had to.
4. What do you think of Scotland regaining its independence?
Reaction to Scottish independence was mixed. Some children would be sorry to see Scotland leave because the Union Flag would have to change, our sporting teams would be weaker and people with Scottish relatives would feel more distant from them. Other pupils wouldn’t have been in the slightest bit bothered if Scotland had become independent.
5. What do you learn form Idi Amin as our president and in relation to
A) His leadership style?
C) Treatment of Indians?
The children thought that Idi Amin was not a good leader as he killed his own people. By kicking out the Asian Ugandans we thought this was the sign of someone who had grown drunk on power. The children thought that sport ceased to have any importance based on the fact that Amin was killing his own people.
6. What would be the best way to lead people in your country?
The children believe that the mark of a successful leader is to make sure that all the people have basic human rights observed and all the basic needs provided for. The homeless should be looked after, education should be a priority and the right to vote in a fair election is essential. Freedom of speech is important as is freedom of religious worship.
We thank you for your questions and Mr Stanley has a question he would like to ask the children at Kafuro. In our country we are almost embarrassed to celebrate St George’s Day. Many people feel that nationalistic pride can be a dangerous thing and can be hijacked by unsavoury elements. If you were planning a celebration for St George’s Day what could the English be realistically proud of celebrating? We await your responses.