1980s in Zimbabwe

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Zimbabwe regained its independence from the United Kingdom on 17 April 1980. Canaan Banana, a Methodist minister and theologian, became the first President of Zimbabwe on 18 April.

On 17 February 1982 the government of Zimbabwe accused Joshua Nkomo, leader and founder of the Zimbabwe African Peoples Union, of plotting a coup d'état, and dismissed him from the cabinet.

The Gukurahundi (also known as the "Matabeleland genocide") began in 1983. More than 300,000 youths signed up for service in the Youth Brigade.

Prime Minister Robert Mugabe (ZANU) and Joshua Nkomo (ZAPU) signed a Unity Accord on 22 December 1987, giving the ZAPU leader a place in the government, freeing dissidents, and bringing a formal end to violence of the Gukurahundi. Mugabe became the new President of Zimbabwe after reforming the constitution on 31 December 1987, abolishing the position of Prime Minister.

Morgan Tsvangirai was elected Secretary General of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions in 1988.

Zimbabwe African People's Union (ZAPU) merged with Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU) under the name Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) on 19 December 1989.

Part of a series on the
History of Zimbabwe
Coat of arms of Zimbabwe
Ancient history
Mapungubwe Kingdom c.1075–1220
Zimbabwe Kingdom c.1220–1450
Mutapa Kingdom c.1450–1760
Torwa dynasty c.1450–1683
White settlement pre-1923
Rozwi Empire c.1684–1834
Matabeleland 1838–1894
Rudd Concession 1888
BSA Company rule 1890–1923
First Matabele War 1893–1894
Second Matabele War 1896–1897
World War I involvement 1914–1918
Colony of Southern Rhodesia 1923–1980
World War II involvement 1939–1945
Malayan Emergency
Federation with Northern
Rhodesia and Nyasaland
Rhodesian Bush War 1964–1979
Rhodesia under UDI 1965–1979
Zimbabwe-Rhodesia June–Dec 1979
Dec 1979
British Dependency 1979–1980
Zimbabwe 1980–present
Gukurahundi 1982–1987
Second Congo War 1998–2003
Zimbabwe portal