Upon independence in 1964, Zambia adopted the melody of “God Bless Africa” for the melody, yet different lyrics were written to specifically reflect Zambia. “God Bless Africa” is a popular song and anthem in southern Africa, the song was also formerly used by Zimbabwe, Ciskei, and Transkei, and currently by Tanzania and as part of the South African anthem.

In 2005, representatives of the Zambian women’s movement wanted the lyrics to the national anthem changed: “free men” changed to “freely” and “brothers” to “all one”. It was decreed that when the anthem was adopted the masculine gender was used to include females as well, and the anthem was not changed, since the anthem is “composed of historical lyrics that reflect the country‚Äôs heritage.”

Special thanks to: Steve Cantwell for correcting some of the information.

See also: South Africa (1994-1997).