Oliver Tambo was born in South Africa on the 27th of October, 1917. His father, who was a farm laborer, died when Tambo was only four years old. Tambo’s mother then took on the role of both parents, working long hours as a domestic servant to support her family. Tambo’s early childhood was spent in the rural village of Nkantolo in the Eastern Transvaal, where he attended a local mission school.
In 1933, Tambo was awarded a scholarship to attend high school in Johannesburg. He enrolled at Orlando West High School, where he became involved in student politics. Tambo excelled academically, and graduated from high school in 1937.
After graduation, Tambo enrolled at the University of Fort Hare, where he studied for a Bachelor of Arts degree. Tambo again became involved in student politics at Fort Hare, and was elected president of the Student Representative Council. He also became a member of the African National Congress (ANC).
In 1940, Tambo was expelled from the University of Fort Hare for his involvement in a student protest. He then moved to Johannesburg, where he completed his Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Witwatersrand
Oliver Tambo Timeline
Oliver Tambo was an influential leader of the African National Congress (ANC) in South Africa. He was born in 1917 in rural Eastern Cape, and became a qualified lawyer in 1943. In 1959, he was elected President of the ANC, a position he held until 1990. During this time, he worked tirelessly to bring about the end of Apartheid in South Africa. He was instrumental in the formation of Umkhonto we Sizwe, the militant arm of the ANC, and in 1960 was arrested and charged with treason. He was released in 1969, and continued to play a leading role in the liberation of South Africa. In 1985, he was awarded the Order of Meritorious Service, and in 1992 he was elected National Chairperson of the ANC. Tambo passed away in 1993, but his legacy of justice and equality lives on.
Activism in the ANC (1941-1950)
Oliver Tambo was a key figure in the African National Congress (ANC) during the 1940s and 1950s. He was instrumental in leading the move towards a more active form of activism in the ANC and played a major role in the struggle for African liberation.
Tambo joined the ANC in 1941, at the age of 25. He quickly rose to prominence in the organization, and was soon elected as the president of its Transvaal branch. During his time in the ANC, Tambo led a number of campaigns to raise awareness of African issues and to advocate for the rights of African people.
In 1945, Tambo was part of a delegation to the United Nations in New York, where he spoke about the issue of apartheid and its effects on African people. It was during this trip that Tambo first made contact with other African liberation organisations, such as the Pan-African Congress and the African National Congress of South Africa (ANCSA).
In 1946, Tambo was one of the founding members of the ANC Youth League, along with Nelson Mandela and Walter Sisulu. The aim of the Youth League was to make the ANC more active in its struggle against apartheid. They sought to mobilise young people to engage in protest and civil disobedience, and to put pressure on the government to end its oppressive policies.
In 1949, Tambo was elected as the president of the ANC, a position he held until his death in 1993. As president, he was a key figure in the ANC’s campaign for non-violent civil disobedience, and he was instrumental in the formation of the Defiance Campaign in 1952. This campaign saw thousands of people engaging in acts of civil disobedience, such as refusing to carry a passbook, breaking the curfew and boycotting segregated buses. This campaign was ultimately successful in forcing the South African government to repeal some of its most oppressive laws.
Tambo was also an important figure in the international struggle for African liberation. He travelled extensively, and was instrumental in the formation of the Organisation of African Unity in 1963. He also formed a close relationship with the African-American civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.
Oliver Tambo’s leadership and activism played an important role in the struggle for African liberation. He was a key figure in the ANC’s move towards a more active form of activism, and in the campaigns of civil disobedience which ultimately forced the South African government to repeal some of its most oppressive laws. His work and dedication will never be forgotten.
Exile and Activism Outside of South Africa (1960-1990)
Oliver Tambo was a pivotal figure in South African politics during the period of exile and activism between 1960 and 1990. He was a major leader of the African National Congress (ANC) and was instrumental in leading the resistance against apartheid.
Tambo was born in 1917 in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. He studied law at the University of Fort Hare and went on to become the first black student to be elected as the president of the South African Students’ Organization. Tambo was at the forefront of the ANC’s defiance campaign against the government and played a key role in organizing the nationwide bus boycotts. He was arrested and charged with treason in 1956 and was later released.
In 1960, Tambo and other ANC leaders were forced into exile due to the increasing repression by the South African government. During this period, Tambo served as the ANC’s president-in-exile from 1969 to 1991. He was committed to peacefully opposing the apartheid regime and dedicated his life to organizing activities abroad that would apply pressure on the South African government. He traveled extensively and worked to build international support for the ANC’s cause.
Tambo’s activism was also focused on providing crucial aid and assistance to South Africans living under apartheid. He established an ANC mission in London which was responsible for providing financial and practical assistance to South African exiles. Tambo also provided legal advice to those who were arrested and charged with political offenses. He also established the ANC’s military wing, Umkhonto we Sizwe, and provided guidance on how to promote the struggle from abroad.
Tambo’s activism abroad played a major role in the eventual end of apartheid in South Africa. He was an inspirational leader who dedicated his life to securing freedom and justice for his people. His legacy as a freedom fighter and a man of principle will never be forgotten.
Return to South Africa (1990-1991)
In the early 1990s, South Africa was gripped by a period of political unrest that threatened to tear the country apart. In order to prevent this, the African National Congress (ANC) leader Oliver Tambo made it his mission to secure a peaceful transition to democracy. Tambo’s efforts culminated in 1991, when he returned to South Africa for the first time in 30 years.
Tambo, who had been living in exile in Zambia since the 1960s, took a major risk in returning to South Africa. He was aware of the dangers posed by the oppressive apartheid government and was determined to make sure that a peaceful transition to democracy would be achieved.
In April 1991, Tambo arrived in South Africa and was greeted by a jubilant crowd. He addressed the crowd and declared, “I have come home!” His speech was met with thunderous applause and his return was welcomed by many South Africans. He then travelled around the country and met with leaders of various political factions, including the African National Congress (ANC) and Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP). Tambo’s efforts were instrumental in forging a lasting peace between these two factions.
In addition to his efforts to secure a peaceful transition to democracy, Tambo also sought to improve the lives of South Africans by working to end the oppressive apartheid system. He met with government leaders and negotiated agreements that would result in the repeal of discriminatory laws and the release of political prisoners. Tambo also worked tirelessly to promote human rights and to ensure that all South Africans had access to education, healthcare, and economic opportunities.
Tambo’s return to South Africa in 1991 was a major turning point in the country’s history. His efforts helped to ensure a peaceful transition to democracy and paved the way for a more inclusive and prosperous future for all South Africans. His legacy lives on today in the many freedoms and opportunities enjoyed by South Africans of all backgrounds.
The timeline of Oliver Tambo’s life demonstrates his unwavering commitment to social justice and democracy in South Africa. His leadership in the African National Congress, as well as his tireless dedication to the anti-apartheid struggle, has been remembered and honored around the world. His legacy continues to inspire people to fight for justice and equality, and he will be remembered for his tireless efforts to bring unity and peace to South Africa.