A story of love, which was against the whole worldPictolic
The love story and marriage of the first President of Botswana sir Seretse Khama and Englishwoman Ruth Williams caused an unprecedented political and diplomatic turmoil in 1948. Seretse Khama descended from the chiefs Bamangwato and educated in South Africa and the UK, met his future wife in England during his studies. Marriage couples were opposed by literally everyone — family Seretse and Ruth and the British government, because at that time, Botswana was a British protectorate in South Africa. Seretse forced to leave his wife and return home, or to abandon the land of his tribe. However, detractors could not separate the lovers. Moreover, the pair returned home Seretse, where he became the first President of Botswana, had achieved their country's independence from Britain, becoming one of the most rapidly developing countries on the continent, and Ruth entered the history of Botswana as one of the most influential and politically active first lady.
Their story had an exceptional resonance in the society, and about the famous pair wrote novels and even directed the film "United Kingdom" with Rosamund pike and David Oyelowo in the lead roles.
The couple met in 1947 at a dance the London missionary society, where Ruth took her sister Muriel. Seretse approached the sisters and asked to the dance by Ruth. And so began their affair.
Novel inflamed very quickly. But neither Seretse nor Ruth did not receive support from their families in connection with the upcoming wedding. Uncle Seretse was categorically against it, because the heir had to finish his education, to return home and marry the woman he will choose family. Father and Ruth once said that the daughter cannot marry a black man.
But the young people did not even know that they have to withstand the onslaught of not only relatives, but also the governments of the UK and South Africa. In South Africa there was to be established apartheid, and Britain did not want to complicate relations with the country. South Africa made it clear to Britain that if their premises will be the marriage between a white woman and an African, it would mean a constitutional crisis. On the photo: couple in London in 1949.
The priest who was to marry young, have hinted that the wedding cannot take place. Then Seretse and Ruth got married secretly and went to Africa. But there problems are not over. Uncle Seretse, which, apparently, he wanted to take the throne, was furious and did everything to the tribal elders refused to acknowledge Ruth Queen and the marriage itself valid. After some time Seretse was invited to London, and it was a trap. There he was forced to abandon by that time his pregnant wife and their rights as future head of the tribe. Having been refused, the representatives of the government stated that he will be banished from their native land. In the end Seretse abdicated, returned to Africa after the first democratic elections was elected the first President of the country, which later became Botswana. On the photo: the President and first lady of Botswana with Queen Elizabeth and Princess Anne at a dinner at Buckingham Palace.
Seretse Khama and Ruth Williams born four children — a daughter and three sons. Eldest son Ian Khama is President of Botswana since 2008.
British politician Bevan Aneurin and the President and first lady of Botswana to the House of lords. Photo: rexfeatures.com
Nigeria's President Mohammad Bukhari, Prime Minister of great Britain David Cameron and the President of Botswana Ian Khama, the son of Seretse Khama and Ruth Williams. Photo: rexfeatures.com
US President Barack Obama and the President of Botswana Ian Khama. Photo: rexfeatures.com
The monument to the first President of the Republic of Botswana Seretse Khemu in the capital, Gaborone. Photo: rexfeatures.com
Frame from the film "United Kingdom", based on the motives of the love story of the first President of Botswana and Englishwoman Ruth Williams.