President Kenneth Kaunda of Zambia made his first official state visit to Britain on March 22, and was welcomed by Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip. He had visited Britain several times in the past, and the purpose of his first official trip was to smooth over the cracks in relationships between the two countries, caused by strains over the future of Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe).
During the negotiations, under which the former British colony of Rhodesia became independent Zimbabwe, President Kaunda staunchly supported the British Commonwealth, which earned him the gratitude of Queen Elizabeth, his host during this visit.
A state banquet was held in his honour at the Queen’s London residence, Buckingham Palace, during which he thanked the British government for its realism in paving the way for independence for Zimbabwe.
He planned to meet Prime Minister Mrs. Margaret Thatcher before he left.
– ITN March 22, 1983
COMMENT: Since Dr. Kaunda’s visits to Britain, no other Zambian President has been welcomed by the British Queen let alone go to that country on a State Visit. Even today, KK still remains respected by Her Majesty and they enjoy a personal friendship.