Editor General, Barotseland Post

Editor General, Barotseland Post

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Reading Hon. Shuwanga s piece of writing should make all those who truly love Barotseland to raise their heads to review the post BNC 2012 resolution events – the way forward, the killings, the factions and the arrests. BNC 2012 blessed by the King of Barotseland surely gave confidence to all of us Rotse people.

“Mr. Sata who made the March 2012 Barotse National Council Conference possible. He had promised to accept any outcome. An irreversible decision to be independent of Zambia was unanimously arrived at.” Hon Shuwanga

Barotseland activities are all based on the belief of BNC 2012 resolutions. Putting Zambia aside, Barotseland should sought issues out.

I have the following questions;

1. Are we as Barotseland understanding and respecting the BNC 2012 resolution?

2. Does Zambia understand it either?

3. Is the BNC 2012 resolution binding on both Zambia and Barotseland?

4. Why is the King and the Kuta quiet over the current arrest of Hon. Afumba and others?

5. Why is BNFA, if truly an umbrella of all groupings also quiet?

6. The Zambian Government now does not even allow any one going near the court just to listen or support our own blood. Will this continue and people watch dance and vote for them?

7. BNC 2012 resolution was the strength of all Barotseland, BUT, count how many people have lost their lives over this issue? Some are still dying today from suspected poisoning. Is this going to continue?

8. People are dying, arrested, families displaced, children and women are suffering, people live in fear. How do the leaders of BNFA, LINYUNGANDAMBO, THE KUTA (BRE) AND THE KING feel?

9. Will Barotseland be a place without human rights?

10. “The late president had clearly articulated his willingness to allow Barotseland go free of Zambia if only our elders supported such a conclusion”. Is any elder in support?

11. Is it possible that the Barotse leadership can issue a statement and its respected by Zambia?

12. Is every one claiming to be in struggle really in it?

13. Will Barotseland happily participate in the Zambian presidential elections in the light of BNC 2012 resolution?

14. Are we one, two or three?

15. Is the BNC 2012 resolution closer to be reversed?

16. What sin have Barotseland committed which cannot be forgiven?

Reports that Patriotic Front President, Mr. Edgar Lungu, had sent security personnel to Mwembeshi maximum prison to kidnap unjustly arrested Linyungandambo leaders are not only of grave concern to the people of Barotseland but also provide an informed idea of the man who may become the next president of Zambia. What has so far been reported about Mr. Lungu since the passing of President Michael Sata only suggest that Zambia may be led by a man who could be equated to the Idi Aminis and Sani Abachas of the gone-by days. It is apparent that Honourable Afumba and the comrades he was arrested with are not safe at all.

Perhaps to emphasize this feeling is a report on Zambian Watch Dog that alleges Mr. Lungu’s knowledge of the cold blooded murder of Zambia Air Force Deputy Commander, General Muliokela Muliokela, a Lozi, and Colonel Mwene by ZAF Commander Erick Chimene and former Director Intelligence Xavier Chungu. More worrying still is the fact that the acting Zambian President, Mr Guy Scott, has clearly stated that the Barotse quartet committed no crime and yet he, as the head of government, has not used his authority to have them released. As if to confirm our concerns, Mr. Masiye Musialeti and others who attended the court hearings in Mumbwa were suddenly arrested. This is nothing else but deliberate provocation. These grim concerns may explain why the Barotse leaders were taken to Lusaka, far away from their relatives and comrades. Acts like these can only be associated with tyrants who have no slightest respect for human rights and cannot be acceptable in this age; worse still in a society that claims to be Christian and one of the beacons of democracy in Africa. The Bible teaches that God will judge all unrighteousness regardless of whether one believes or not. It does not change what the Creator Has ordained in eternity (Hebrews 9:27).

History has always proved harsh to all so called leaders who transgress other people’s rights. We have not forgotten those who murdered our people in cold blood in 2011. Kabayo Kabayo and the bodies of other Barotse activists who died in Zambian prisons or after their release from jail will be exhumed and be subjected to forensic post mortem to determine the actual cause of their death. We have not forgotten the missing five and we shall leave no stone unturned to get to the bottom of what became of them. Culprits will eventually be taken to the International Criminal Court. Mr. Lungu and any other power hungry Zambian leaders who may want to go and join Pierre Bemba and the rest at The Hague are at liberty to do so. No one will ever get away with crimes committed against our people.

The late Mr. Sata was sensible enough to understand the gravity of the Barotseland impasse. He had clearly stated to us on 28th December 2011 that he never wished to be taken to The Hague at any time, hence his unconditional release of all Barotse activist and the setting up of a commission of inquiry. Any aspiring Zambian president who would want to violate Lozi people’s rights must not be encouraged by the Uhuru Kenyatta case in that the Kenyan and Barotseland positions cannot be similar in any way. Indicted Zambians will have no one to bribe or intimidate on the Barotseland case.

It was Mr. Sata who had advised us to meet our elders in order to map out the way forward on Barotseland. The late president had clearly articulated his willingness to allow Barotseland go free of Zambia if only our elders supported such a conclusion. Although his promises turned out to be like the ones Pharaoh had earlier made to Moses, it was essentially Mr. Sata who made the March 2012 Barotse National Council Conference possible. He had promised to accept any outcome. An irreversible decision to be independent of Zambia was unanimously arrived at. It is, therefore, short sightedness and irresponsible for any Zambian authorities to victimize our peace loving people in this manner. Detaining Hon. Mombotwa is not in the interest of peace loving Zambians either. Whoever authorized the arrest did so for his own selfish and diabolical ends. Being elections time, one cannot avoid believing that the arrests were all made for political mileage sake. That will not work.

It is, furthermore, a paradox of some sort for the acting president to announce that Hon. Mombotwa and company had committed no crimes and yet perpetuating their detention. Such actions only expose the incompetence of post Michael Sata Patriotic Front and its incapability to progressively rule Zambia.

Hon. Afumba Mombotwa must be released forthwith for the sake of peace and progressive disengagement with Zambia. Barotseland is a free nation. Zambian presence in Barotseland is only an occupation against our will. Mr. Scott, who is actually a Lozi by birth since he was born in Livingstone, must exercise his prerogative and free Hon. Mombotwa and company before power hungry wolves bent on anarchy add more calamities to the Zambian presidency. Barotseland will not reverse the March 2012 BNC resolution.

Shuwanga Shuwanga

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!

The Barotseland Post, also known as The Barotsepost, is an online media platform, for now, that is dedicated to reporting stories and news around Barotseland and beyond, giving exclusive coverage and access to the people and the nation of Barotseland to fully express themselves in their aspirations for self- determination.