Charles Mzingeli was a Zimbabwean nationalist that fought for the freedom of Zimbabwe.

Charles Mzingeli
Charles Mzingeli, Charles Mzingeli, Zimbabwean nationalist
Charles Mzingeli
Born Charles Mzingeli
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Plumtree
Occupation
  • Freedom Fighter

Background

Charles Mzingeli was born on 19 March 1905 in Plumtree. Charles was the fifth child in a family of nine children (two boys and seven girls). Charles did not go to school until he was 15 years old. He was sent to Empangeni Mission where he embraced the Roman Catholic Faith.

After primary school, he went to work in South Africa as a domestic servant, where he came under the influence of the trade unionist, Clement Kadali.

Movements

Charles Mzingeli would be a part of Reformed Industrial and Commercial Union, Reformed Industrial and Commercial Workers' Union, Commercial Workers Union, United Federal Party, All-Africa Convention, during his lifetime.

In Bulawayo, Charles started a branch of the Industrial and Commercial Workers’ Union (ICU). He later transformed the organisation and led it as the Reformed Industrial and Commercial Workers’ Union (RICU).

Charles Mzingeli moved to Salisbury Harare in 1929 and became one of the earliest activists while earning his living by running a grocer’s shop in Harare. For many years he was the focal point of grievances for urban workers and even for rural tribesmen. He was regarded by the Government of that time as a ‘dangerous communist’. In 1930 he was arrested in Salisbury for making a subversive speech.

In 1951 he became Interim Chairman of the All-African Convention, established on the initiative of Harry Nkumbula3 to unite all those African groups in Southern Rhodesia which were in opposition to the proposed Central African Federation.

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Positions Held

1952-1952: Interim President of All-African Convention