Editor General, Barotseland Post
The concern about Barotseland's security should now take center stage because Barotseland has the right legal framework to do so, therefore, it's right time now for Barotseland to constitute a national Defense Force to defend the territory from external threats. This time around Zambia will be held responsible should this issue spill into armed conflict, if Zambia persist to control Barotseland territory contrary to the dictates of public international law.
Even before recognition Barotseland state has the right to defend its integrity and independence. For any country to effectively and authoritatively command control of her territory, it should have established defense force. According to Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States Signed at Montevideo, 26 December 1933 and Entered into Force, 26 December 1934 article 3 starts that ,
"The political existence of the state is independent of recognition by the other states. Even before recognition the state has the right to defend its integrity and independence, to provide for its conservation and prosperity, and consequently to organize itself as it sees fit, to legislate upon its interests, administer its services, and to define the jurisdiction and competence of its courts."
Therefore, there is nothing wrong for Barotseland to exercise her right under the Rights and Duties of States by establishing national defense force to stand against external threats especially from Zambia the occupying force in Barotseland territory.
Legal interpretations and knowledge are at our disposal, to enable us to stand against Zambia's uncalled violation of Barotseland's right to self-rule. States signatory to the Geneva Conventions undertake to respect and to ensure respect for the Conventions in all circumstances.
The Barotseland transitional government through the Acting Administrator General is expected to take appropriate action to take Zambia to the international Court of Justice if Zambia thinks they can use domestic Zambian jungle laws to hold the people of Barotseland captive. The question at hand now is how far the Barotseland government is prepared to stop this extra territorial operations by Zambia? We understand the defense force requires good funding to procure necessary military hardware and to sustain personnel through salaries and training.
Of course with the efforts put so far these are non challenges for Barotseland as a state to constitute a defense force.
The people, who are the citizens of Royal Barotseland, have already spoken and opted for independence through the BNC of 29th March 2012 , whose resolutions insisted on an urgent government formation and peaceful independence struggle to prevail even if it faces stiff opposition from the occupying force.
The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (Article 15 (2)) stipulates
“No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his Nationality nor denied the Right to change his Nationality.”
Indeed we are Barotzhish, and as nationals of Barotseland, we are ready to defend our country if pushed too far.
Zambia's persistent and violation of various international conventions on the rights of people to self-determination is regrettable, and it will cost Zambia in compensation to pay Barotseland for the lost economic opportunities for five decades.
The recent arrest of the Administrator General Rt. Hon. Afumba Mombotwa and two transitional government officials may best be seen as the arrest of an ex‐diplomats of a foreign State, and is viewed as hostile acts on the part of Zambia against unarmed people of Barotseland.
Tukongote Litunga Ni lyetu.
I would like to shed light on the genesis of the Nkoya tribal group of Barotseland, in order to disprove the innuendo being peddled that certain tribal extractions are under subjugation of other tribal groupings in Barotseland. This incorrect assumption is being engineered by political stewards who are our brothers and sisters from the group that professes to be of the "Nkoya" extraction which claims not to belong to Lozi nationality. They have argued that Nkoyas are not part of the Barotse-speaking people. According to a Nkoya traditionalist, Robert Litungu.
It is better to explain this issue because the matter is being exaggerated and fuelled by forces outside Barotseland who are Zambian politicians aiming at bringing division among the diversified ethnic groupings of Royal Barotseland Kingdom. It is therefore, proper to discuss this matter honestly in order to remove the unnecessary innuendoes on this argument. To start with, let us examine who the "Nkoya" people are?
It is stated that the "Nkoya" people are descendants of Sioka Nalinanga and that this argument is not carried forward beyond this level.
The fact is that the name "Nkoya" was adulterated from the name Ñoya who was a sister to Mwambwa and both of them being daughters of Noshaa.
On the occasion of the death of their mother while residing along the "Loi" River in the present day Congo DR, the first dispersal took place which saw the moving away of notables like Inyunyi, Mbukushu, Yutoya, Ngambwa, Imanga, Kayawe, Nyimbwamoyo, Mbakala and many, many more. The dispersal was ignited by the desire to change leadership from women to men and that there were problems of disposal of the chattels of the departed leader (their mother Noshaa). Notables, among others, like Isimwaa had resisted the idea to replace the leadership from women to men. Following this episode, the first group went away leaving others including Mwambwa and Ñoya with their children.
After sometime, the group decided to take a similar movement which brought them to the present settlement of "Ului" which was derived from the name "Loi" River in present day Congo DR.
While on the trek, incidentally, they found or stumbled on Yutoya while others had gone in different directions, which were later located. During this time, Mwambwa was the leader who was supported by Ñoya and the other people. Ñoya had daughters by the names of Nalinanga and Nolea who latter had sons by the name of Sioka and Imatakwana who later became famous and got known as Mange.
Sioka, being a nobleman, was given responsibility to look after the royal regalia during the reign of Mwambwa. In the meantime, Ñoya had moved to settle in a land which became known as Ñoya which is sandwiched between Mwito under Induna (chief) Mayankwa in Lukulu district, Luambuwa under Induna (chief) Kabilamwandi in Kaoma district while the other side is in the area of Sikusi under Induna ( chief) Iloke and Luena / Sitoya under Induna (chief) Sibetta in Mungu district respectively.
The land of Ñoya is eulogized by people who truly confess to be members of the Ñoya stock. As to the position of Sioka, true members of the Ñoya stock, will say:-
" Ami Kankoya ka Shihoka Nalinanga, bantu ba tula mikabo baka kulya nshima kuanga. Ba Mununga, ba nungile mpanda mwilu", meaning, “I am a Nkoya of the line of Sioka Nalinanga, one who eats nshima having climbed a tree".
The differences between the Nkoya people and the rest of Barotse tribes does not arise and is a non issue which should not be politicized. The insinuation of this matter is too dangerous to Barotseland and Zambia as a whole. The BRE is more democratic than the Zambian government. The Zambian government is democratic in theory, but for the past 50 years has marginalized and abused power. Kenneth Kaunda Zambia's first president was a semi-dictator under one party participatory democracy, whatever that means?
Before Zambia’s independence in 1964, the people in Barotseland were voting their Legislative council in power, representing their constituencies. The Litunga does not rule by decree or creed. There is no force.
Also note that the Litunga does not speak. This is how decisions are made and not by the Litunga.
There are three chambers in the Kuta, Bana Ba Malena, Commoners and the Indunas. This is how Barotse Royal Establishment is composed of. Also it is good to note that all tribes in Barotseland are in the governance systems of Barotse Royal Authority (BRA) or Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) according to Zambian imposition.
The BRA is not intending to go back to the days of slavery and enslave Nkoyas.
As a matter of fact, Litunga was the first African leader to end slavery. The name Litunga ‘Mulambwa’ signifies people should stop slavery but buy and sell dogs instead. This was way back in 1830. Lewanika upheld anti- slavery tendencies.
To add a bit on the relationship between the Luyis’ and the Nkoyas’, Mankoya/Kaoma had also been invaded and subjected to Makololo rule and was only reclaimed by the Luyi impis who wiped out the Makololos.
Makololos are the ones who imposed Lozi language across Barotseland and Mankoya had equally been headed by the Makololo, just like all other ethnic groupings of Barotseland.
This, therefore, should surely explain the connection between Mankoya and the rest of the people of Barotseland. As explained from the historical narration, the Nkoya people are from the root of Ñoya who was a blood sister to Mwambwa, therefore, the children of them are relatives of the same stock.
Finally, the Nkoya people should not violate historical and ethical codes of professional decency, thereby, being untrue to the History of their genesis in Barotseland by allowing themselves to be used by politicians with historical theory mixed with errors and polluted with political propaganda.
Tukongote Litunga Ni lyetu.
By Saleya Kwalombota
IN WHAT CONTEXT IS BAROTSELAND A STATE?
I would like to clarify the innuendo being peddled by enemies of Barotseland with intent to corrupt the less enlightened citizens in regard to the Act of INDEPENDENCE DECLARATION, the method Barotseland followed. In the first place the route of independence declaration is legal and the independence claim born out of it is legitimate. Barotseland is not the only country to have taken such a route but countries like USA, Kosovo, etc did the same.
According to the Montevideo Convention on Statehood of 1933 sets out several requirements for Statehood. The Convention, and prevailing law at the time, viewed States as a kind of sui generis legal entity operating and existing under its own authority and power.
Article 3 provides, the political existence of the state is independent of recognition by the other states. Even before recognition the state has the right to defend its integrity and independence, to provide for its conservation and prosperity, and consequently to organize itself as it sees fit, to legislate upon its interests, administer its services, and to define the jurisdiction and competence of its courts.
Barotseland has done exactly the same , after the historic and famous 2012 BNC unilateral Declaration of independence, Barotseland did not go to sleep but organized herself by putting up government structures and formulating of Acts which were destroyed by Zambian regime of Kaunda in 1965.
The Montevideo Convention article 6 then goes on to state,
"The recognition of a state merely signifies that the state which recognizes it accepts the personality of the other with all the rights and duties determined by international law. Recognition is unconditional and irrevocable."
From stand point of international law Barotseland is a State and I know for most of Zambians it is news. I sympathize with them because Kaunda managed to brain wash them in his school of jungle thoughts still believed by elite Zambians.
Appeal to all Lozis , don't fail to assert to the repossession of your rightful property or ownership. Understand that by the act of declaration you have become a state and have right to legislate in your declared independent territory. Remember, it’s not Zambia to give Barotseland sovereignty but sovereignty is with the people of Barotseland and this is what the international law stipulates. What is remaining is to accomplish the recognition of an entity as a State in the international community to be able to function within the bigger family, that makes it so. One simple reason for this might be that States serve a regulatory function in the world. Their function is to administer a portion of the planet where people live.
The process of disengagement is another area that requires the input of international community, for implementation and supervision of the process. This is the task our transitional government is working on day and night to win diplomatic recognition of which I believe is not far from now. The recognition will mean that Barotseland will be able get support both military and economic while develop her own strength to resist international threat.
Tukongote Litunga Ni lyetu
By Saleya Kwalombota
If the report as given by Watchdog Zambia on who actual initiated the arrest of the three honorable freedom fighters and the role played by the two named sons of Barotseland is true, then it is regrettable and not to be left hanging before the dual plunges Barotseland in more bigger trouble.
From the information reaching us it is believed that the two have been best friends and attracted a lot of trust and sympathy from Chief Inyambo yet he did not know the type of the young men he was dealing with. The act is barbaric and anti-barotseland. We condemn them to the fullest and request all those who love Barotseland to do so and isolate the duo.
What they have done is worse than what Judas Iscariot did. The blood of those who died in this struggle for the freedom of Barotseland and indeed the suffering of Barotseland rests on their heads. We have nothing to forgive about the dual especially that they are truly sons of Barotseland. I cannot imagine our own brothers selling out Barotseland in this manner.
It is my plea to request Chief Inyambo not to allow this sell-out to continue as an induna as this will amount to sabotage of the peace of Barotseland. He is not a leader but a fortune seeker and all the problems faced by our chief now and before, are because of him.
Barotseland should wake up and put this to order. Give the two gentlemen their right treatment before they do more harm to the people of Barotseland.
Bana ba malozi sure…sure… niheiba uka fapana ni wa henu ka mukwa ufi kamba ufi, haukoni kueza sitoyo sesi cwana se. Ki bumai ni maswabisa amatuna. Nduna yo ni mupokola yo ba bulaile bulozi kaufela…
Ni hakuli cwalo ki hande kutiya, swala tebe ,lilumo ni mukwale ku lwanela bulozi ni ku toola batu ba mufuta sina ba.
Barotseland ki naha!
Let it be known that Barotseland is the World and Africa’s Newest State as such Barotseland has a right to legislate and take control of her own affairs. The Barbaric behavior exhibited by Zambia recently by arresting people of Barotseland government is condemned in the strongest terms and we will go any far to stop this nonsense.
The people of Barotseland will no longer be incarcerated, we say no to the scourge of slavery, servitude and poundage through the language Zambia understands as reflected in the press release of the acting Administrator General Dr. M.Situmbeko. As citizens of Barotseland we have made commitment to defend the territory from extra territorial operation by Zambia, trusting that we have followed the requirements of public international law to the latter. We call upon all Indunas, Headmen, and Lozis who are in political authority home and abroad to observe the demand on the final approach to total independence by defeating Zambia our enemy number one. Especially, as we are ready to put an end to Barotseland impasse because there is nothing sweeter than self-determination and freedom which is a God given gift.
Appreciating the foregoing , it would be the worst act of treachery and betrayal against the tenets of Barotse National Council for the people of Barotseland to fail to secure the territory from invaders (Zambia) as per 2012 BNC resolutions which expressed urgency for total independence and by the act of declaration, Zambia has no general power to pass legislation taking effect outside their own territory. Accordingly, as the people of Barotseland we are entitled to secure self-determination and freedom by any action that will compel Zambia out of Barotseland state without any further delay. Barotseland is African 's newest state and has insignia of state apparatus such as flag, national anthem, emblem , transitional government, cabinet and the Church (Church of Barotseland). Moreover, Zambia has no jurisdiction over an independent state of Barotseland. Therefore, let all those arrested over Barotseland released without any further delay.
I will end up in ALuyana eulogy:- "Mufa na saye ni muteebe, ta liokwe ni mufa na mbuyuyu mu kanwa", meaning, “Blessed is that who is prepared to die for his possession like a Goose is ready to die with a grain in its gully or arroyo".
Kozo, Litunga Ni lyetu.
By Saleya Kwalombota
I heard a voice say this to me, “can you ask among the learned lawyers of this country why the three youths (Mr. Boris Muziba, Mr. Nayoto Mwenda, and Mr. Sikwibele Wasilota) are serving a three years jail sentence when the High Court has ruled that it is not an offence to publish false news in a democratic dispensation in Zambia.” I looked around to see who was speaking to me, then I realised it was the voice of the conscience, that inner “policeman” who always urges us to do what is right and avoid what is wrong. Whenever there is no justice in the society, the people suffer, especially the poor. The Social teaching of the Catholic Church is clear on this, We need to show Solidarity, because we are our "brothers' and sisters' keepers", wherever they live. We are one human family, whatever our national, racial, ethnic, economic, and ideological differences. Learning to practice the virtue of solidarity means learning that "loving our neighbour." Those three youths who were arrested, prosecuted and sentenced to three years imprisonment should now be released with compensation. Among our learned men and women in law I beg you in the name of God to use the law you have learnt to secure the freedom of those youths. A friend of mine a lawyer said this to me,
“The law is clear on the freedom of the press in Zambia. All of us including u and I are free to inform and publicise any form of news. We can report on the happenings in the country. Further, we have the freedom of expression enshrined in the constitution [Article 20 (1)]. Given the facts you have given, I wonder why the youths are locked up. That is a clear violation of human rights and an arbitrary use of powers. Given the law I have alluded to, the youths are at liberty to report on anything. However, if what they report on is malicious and turns out to be untrue then they will be liable for defamation. Defamation Father is not a criminal offence, it is a civil offence whose penalty if found liable are damages to be paid to the injured party. The only criminal offence related to Defamation is the defamation of the President.”
My position is that the youths should be released immediately. The Catholic Church teaches that “that human dignity can be protected and a healthy community can be achieved only if human rights are protected and responsibilities are met.” If they reported on an issue in a malicious way, let he who is injured move to the Mongu High Court. What the authorities are committing is an abrogation of rights. Let someone stand up for what is right, especially for our youths! Why are our brothers still in prison? Where is Justice? Where is the integrity in this incarceration? What are they still doing in prison in the clear land mark light of the judgment of the High Court? The three Nayoto Mwenda, 32, Boris Muziba, 36 and Sikwibele Wasilota, 33 were charged and convicted with the offence of publication of false news with intent to alarm and cause fear or to disturb public peace contrary to Section 67 (1) Chapter 87 of the Laws of Zambia. Why are the human rights groups quiet? Is this not what God condemns in Holy Book of Amos 2:7 “The trample on the heads of the poor as upon the dust of the ground and deny justice to the oppressed.” In another text, God says to Amos to tell the authorities, “you who turn Justice into bitterness and cast righteousness to the ground.” He further boldly told them, “you oppress the righteous and take bribes and you deprive the poor of Justice in the courts” Amos 5:2. Someone may say, ‘priest what is your interest in all this?’ This is our divine calling, to be prophets to the nations, to stand for justice, it is the reason we are ordained. One such example is of St. Eugene de Mazenod, a French priest and founder of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate whose congregation believe in the charism of “preaching the Gospel to the poor”....to seek out in a special way “in the lives of the most abandoned in their many faces and voices, and struggle with these...to safeguard human dignity and respond to the calls of Justice and integrity....”
By Rev. Fr. Chanakila Muyunda,
Santa Croce University, Rome, Italy