Editor General, Barotseland Post
As I pull myself together to start punching the key board for this write - up, polling stations across Zambia , including Barotseland by default , are busy counting the ballot papers. This means the dice has been cast and the decision has been made in as far as who takes over the mantle of leadership and the instruments of power in Zambia after the demise of one, Michael Chilufya Sata, MHSRIEP. Mr. Sata became famous for his campaign promise to do ‘ everything ’ in ninety (90) days when he becomes president , the ninety days prior to his replacement on the Zambian ‘throne’ have been characterized by mayhem and frenzy and a s well as so much paradox and inconsistencies as to boggle the mind. No wonder someone ended up wishing to go to the moon until the dust in ‘Zed’ settles down.
Watching from the terraces as Mwana’Mulozi , one can only conclude that indeed , ‘A revolution is not a tea party or an invitation to dinner , it is a violent overthrow of one class by another,’ said Chairman Mao Tse Tung of China . The manner in which presidential candidates traversed the land in search of votes, made it seem like a matter of life and death , no wonder we have seen unprecedented levels of violence prior to the actual voting day. This was due to the heat of the intellectual and moral combat spilling over into physical confrontation and violence in the negative sense. If the Zambia presidential candidates can engage each other so fiercely for an opportunity to go to plot one, let no Mwana ’ Mulozi think we can achieve Barotseland statehood by sitting idle, being armchair critics of those in the forefront and only participating by asking the famous question; “Luzamaela kai?” (How far are we?). There is no way we can move to our desired destination while sited in our ‘ Lazy - man’s rocking chair ’ , ever in motion but going nowhere. Actualizing Barotseland statehood is a serious revolution! It cannot be overemphasized that: ‘A revolution is not a tea party or an invitation to dinner; it is a violent overthrow of one class by another ’. I should not be misunderstood to advocate for violence in the negative sense. There is such a thing as being combative intellectually, morally, legally and using many other non - violent ‘violent ’ means to achieve a desired goal. They called it non - violent civil disobedience in the civil rights movement of America and the velvet revolution in the Arab Spring of most recent years
The ‘Zambian game of thrones’ means almost nothing to Barotseland because it is about another country. It is very unfortunate that it ha s actually extended to Barotseland , which has already decided to separate from the rest of Zambia. The auxiliary value of the current presidential elections to Barotseland is to produce the next occupant of the Zambia state house who has to be engaged on the actualization of Barotseland statehood as soon as he or she is sown in to office . In fact , I do not envy Zambia ’ s sixth president at all because we do not intend to give him or her the luxury of a honey - moon even for a week after the swearing in ceremony . As advocates for the statehood of Barotseland and activists for Barotseland ’ s Right to self - determination, we are in a hurry to actualize the aspiration of the people of Barotseland who strongly BELIEVE in their RIGHT to SELF - DETERMINATION and SELF - RULE
Barotseland issue, which has haunted Zambian politicians of all ages whether they admit it or not. The exchange of opinion and ideas on the Barotseland issue clearly demonstrate that it is a crucial issue that cannot be taken lightly by any sane person that aspires to occupy Zambia ’ s highest office. Sometimes people think that the Barotseland issue in Zambia is a none - issue once they enter in to state house . However, it has been a key election issue especially since the dawn of democracy in a multiparty environment in 1991. It can actually be said that some politicians as crafty and subtle as snakes have used the issue to gain entrance into state house. Let no one be deceived that the Barotseland issue is a none - issue in as far as Zambia is concern ed for it is the foundation of Zambia as a jurisdiction. This time round , it is even more crucial in the wake of the March 2012 Barotse National Council (BNC) resolutions , which have rendered Zambia a failed unitary state when the people of Barotseland finally opted out since she cannot continue to be part o f a union that ha s been trivialized , violated and unilaterally abrogated with scornful impunity by the other party .
Among the current crop of men and one woman running for the office of president for the failed unitary state of Zambia, the one that spoke with so much clarity over the Barotseland issue is Dr Ludwig Sondashi, a constitutional lawyer and native of Kaonde land in what is today called the North - western province of Zambia. I must confess , it felt so relieving and indeed refreshing to hear someone speak with so much clarity about Barotseland’s right to self - determination and self - rule . The learned Sondashi clearly stated among other things that:
- Barotseland is not a province of Zambia and , therefore , not like any province of Zambia. It was (until 27th March 2012) in fact a state within a state just like it was a protectorate within a protectorate from 1911 to 1964.
- Zambia cannot be Zambia as we know it without Barotseland and the Barotseland Agreement 1964 on one side and Barotseland cannot be part of Zambia without the Barotseland Agreement 1964 on the other side .
- The decision as to whether Barotseland should be part of Zambia (upon the restoration of the BA ’ 64 of course) or pursue its own independent statehood (as per the March 2012 BNC Resolutions) is a preserve of the people of Barotseland alone without the interference of the rest of Zambia
The position of Dr. Sondashi is not an afterthought but clearly spelt out in the Forum for Development Alternatives manifesto . What is interesting is that the learned Kaonde man has not been cited for treason or treason felony by the powers that be . Neither has his party been outlawed for being divisive nor his manifesto classified as being seditious material
Another candidate who made his position clear on Barotseland was Dr Nevers S. Mumba , of the Movement for Multi-Party Democracy who , among other things said that he will immediately embark on preparations for a Barotseland exclusive referendum to determine the course to be taken by Barotseland and its people, if elected to be the sixth president of the failed unitary state of Zambia . While other people and activists saw no need for a referendum when the people of Barotseland have already decide to separate from the rest of Zambia through the BNC resolutions, I am glad that the man of God w as conscious enough to at least know that t he Barotse reserve the right to determine their future. After all I BELIEVE the Barotse people are so fade up of the Zambian fallacy that no matter how many times you ask them in whatever form — BNC, referendum or otherwise — their answer is the same — self - determination and self - rule — just as they resolved in the March 2012 BNC resolutions. The other Candidates were mute about the issue except, Eric Chanda, leader for the Fourth Revolution who opened his mouth only to expose his total ignorance about the whole issue.
A number of things come to the fore in my min d at least, as a result of the electioneering debate , among which are :
- No Mwana ’ Mulozi from whatever walk of life should ever shy away from speaking freely about Barotseland ’ s Right to self - determination and self - rule or indeed participating in any way possible, from now henceforth because “ IT IS NOT TREASON TO SEEK FREEDOM! ” Dr. Ludwig Sondashi our traditional cousin ’ s example is there for all to see .
- Let it be known that it does not matter who wins the race to plot one. The people s of Barotseland are determined to actualize Barotseland statehood.
- There shall be no honeymoon or relaxing after the electioneering marathon. Zambia ’ s sixth president must touch the ground running over the issue of Barotseland.
- The Barotse people should be prepared to declare to the world at any time and in any w ay, that they BELIEVE IN BAROTSELAND’s RIGHT to SELF - DETERMINATION and SELF - RULE, nothing will change that. No matter how many times they are asked and w h at ever method is used. T he people of Barotseland should demonstrate that they have declared as per the March 2012 resolutions .
The people of Barotseland can hardly wait for the declaration of the sixth president of the failed unitary state of Zambia so as to prepare to lock horns with him or her on the transitional arrangements towards the Barotseland statehood . This is an issue that the past five presidents have not dared to do . By handling this issue he or she will stand up head and shoulder above his or her predecessors - BNFA.INFO
The case involving Rt. Hon. Afumba Mombotwa and three other officials of Barotseland provisional government has been transferred to Kabwe High Court for possible Commencement of Trial on some yet to be determined date.
This transpired when the quartet appeared before Mumbwa magistrate Court today 26th January 2015, facing charges of Sedition and treason felony.
They are charged on the account that on unknown date but between March 1, 2012 and August 20, 2013 while in Sioma district the four , Hon. Afumba Mombotwa, Hon. Kalima Inambao, Hon. Pelekelo Kalima and Hon. Paul Masiye jointly acting together with unknown people conspired to secede "Western Province" (Barotseland) from the rest of Zambia.
The four were detained at Mwembeshi prison and are now expected to be transferred to Kabwe.
Afumba was a member of the committee which presented resolutions at the Barotseland National Council (BNC) held on 26th and 27th March 2012 at Limulunga in Mongu, which declared independence of Barotseland from Zambia.
The resolutions were assented to by the Litunga as per policy of the Barotseland National Council, the highest policy making body in Barotseland.
The Zambian government was represented at the 2012 BNC by the Provincial Minister, Provincial PS, Western Province Police Commissioner Siandenge and the Western Provincial Army Headquarters Commander while several diplomats accredited to Zambia from USA, UK, France, German, Netherlands, Botswana and Lesotho also attended.
The BNC resolved to revert Barotseland to her previous status as a separate country from Zambia after the Zambian government refused to restore the Barotseland Agreement of 1964, a treaty which joined the former British protectorates of Barotseland and Northern Rhodesia to form Zambia.
Consequently, on 14th August 2013, Afumba took oath of office as head of the provisional government to over see the transitional period of Zambia's disengagement from Barotseland and restoration of institutions of governance, as Administrator General, before popular elections could be organized and held to elect a civil prime minister.
Barotseland authorities have since submitted the matter before the African Commission of Human and Peoples Rights, an organ of the African Union based in Banjul, Gambia where the matter is being considered but Zambia failed to submit counter evidence despite being given three months to counter the 258 page evidence that Barotseland submitted.
Zambia has also refused to sign the Permanent Court of Arbitration Submission Agreement to settle the matter amicably before the Permanent Court of Arbitration based at The Hague.
Another team of international Lawyers are in the process of handing documents for signing to the Zambian President Edgar Lungu for the matter to be settled at the International Court of Justice (ICJ)
The team was in Zambia to submit documents to the President two weeks ago but had to wait for the new President to be elected.
Today’s Court Session
Meanwhile, hundreds of supporters stood up and left the court room in frustration, went outside to sing Barotseland songs of solidarity, as the magistrate announced the committal of the case to Kabwe High court. The court, which was fully parked with the supporters and sympathizers of the Barotse activists, seemed to have been besieged.
The actual date of beginning of trial at the Kabwe High court, in Kabwe Zambia, is not yet known.
This latest action taken by the Patriotic Front government under new President Edgar Lungu has not been received well by most Lozis who expressed fear and safety of their detained leaders. This means that the accused are now most likely going to be transferred to Kabwe central Zambia, far from their families, while they remain in detention awaiting start of trial. There has been fears raised of food poisoning or some other type of poisoning or harm planned to be tactfully applied to the detained Barotseland leaders as a way of eliminating them for good.
Treason felony attracts a death penalty upon conviction under Zambian laws, and this will be the first ever trial of persons accused of treason over Barotseland’s statehood, as others were merely detained without trial in the past.
Zambia's sixth president Edgar Lungu must touch the ground running over the issue of Barotseland, there is no honeymoon on this issue. Our 2012 BNC resolutions are clear and empathetic. Barotseland's right to self rule cannot be denied to her by any one as it hinges on public international law. We believe in the right to self determination and nothing can change our resolve even in the face of death.
During the run up to Zambia's sixth presidential election, Ludwig Sondashi and Nevers Mumba freely discussed this issue and none was arrested and charged with treason. Why should it only become treason when discussed by Lozi nationals? This exposes Zambia's double standards and it should be a wakeup call to all the people of Barotseland that Zambia holds worst consideration for Barotseland. The utterances of Dr. Ludwig Sondashi are worthy reading knowing that they come from a Zambian constitutional lawyer:-
- "Barotseland is not a province of Zambia and, therefore, not like any province of Zambia. It was (until 27th March 2012) in fact a state within a state just like it was a protectorate within a protectorate from 1911 to 1964.
- The decision as to whether Barotseland should be part of Zambia (upon the restoration of the BA’64 of course) or pursue its own independent statehood (as per the March 2012 BNC Resolutions) is a preserve of the people of Barotseland alone without the interference of the rest of Zambia"
One is confronted with a question, though, why the Zambian government did not arrest and charge Dr. Sondashi of treason felony? Neither has his party been outlawed for being 'divisive' nor his manifesto classified as being 'seditious' material, as many other Zambians commented on this issue but were left Scot free without arrest. This accords a rare window into the thinking and rationale of the Zambian government's views on the Barotseland issue. Therefore, Lozis from all walks of life should now be speaking freely about Barotseland's Right to self-determination and self-rule or indeed participating in any way possible because IT IS NOT TREASON TO SEEK FREEDOM.
We expect the Barotseland patriot for independence and the BRE to engage the new Zambian president Edgar Lungu to immediately start the negotiations of disengagement as tricksters will never be tolerated. Remember that this is the man who exhibits worst considerations of Barotseland and never said anything about it during his presidential message campaigns. We expect tougher time ahead with this man from the way he handled it when he was a minister of Home affairs and Defense; he militarized our territory, arrested our activists and detained them for months without trial, even now the Administrator General of Barotseland provisional government and others are still incarceration at Mwembeshi state prison. The people of Barotseland will not take it kindly with Zambia should the issue of Barotseland not be given serious considerations it deserves and the Lukewarm altitude of the BRE will not be accommodated.
By Saleya Kwalombota
I do not delight in talking of the recent Zambian presidential by-election results for the reason that Zambia as a unitary state no longer exists. However, it is worthy analyzing the outcome of the presidential results. It is worthy of note that the outcome of Zambia's presidential by-election has exposed that Zambia is indeed a divided country, contrary to the one 'Zambia one nation' slogan misinterpreted to be the uniting of 73 Zambian ethnic tribes. However, this result has not come as a surprise to most, because since Independence, Zambia has never had a president from the region that was once under Barotseland North western Rhodesia, unless anointed by a Bemba clique within the ruling party e.g the late Levy Mwanawasa. The vote has clearly being divided along the lines of the old boundaries of Barotseland North Western Rhodesia on one side and the North Eastern Rhodesia on the other, with the latter voting predominantly for the wining candidate, Edgar Lungu, in the 20th January 2015. This in itself is not the worrying issue, but what is very worrying is the backlash being received by the tribes hailing from the other side who opted to vote for the losing candidate, Hakainde Hichilema, who are now being called all sorts of unprintable words and names for not having voted for their winning candidate!
For the past 50 years, Zambia has been running a scheme to oppress and hurt Lozi nationals and ethnic tribes of North western Rhodesia. Talking to any Lozi hailing from Barotseland from all the walks of life, except those whose stomachs are fed by the PF oppressive regime, they will confess that they are genuinely hurt. The hatred for the Lozi nationals and tribes of former North western Rhodesia is rife in every sphere of life in Zambia and now it has even turned into a terminally illness without cure, hence the justifiable call of the Patriots for Barotseland independence. Lozis are not seeking attention, but respect of their inalienable right of self determination. Zambia is a Christian nation and as Christians believe, in particular, that without shedding of Jesus's blood, there could be no salvation. The blood of Jesus Christ still speaks even today. In the same vein the Barotseland activist’s blood that was shed in 2011 is speaking up to now until the reason it was shed for is accomplished, there is no turning back.
It should not be forgotten that the ‘One Zambia and One Nation’ slogan was corrupted by the Kaunda regime, contrary to a social unifying slogan as many people perceive it today, but an anthropological and sociological scheme formulated to devalue the status of the Lozis in Zambia and its results can be seen on the faces of many Lozis in Barotseland. Unfortunately, despite their education, intelligence and being predisposed to leadership, many elite Lozis of profound standing bought into the slogan for the sake of their stomachs, selfishness and greediness which has led Barotseland to its present day enslavement. It is not a hidden fact that most of the prominent Lozis that became Dr. Kaunda’s close associates became Lozi sell-outs. Even today, they will never stand for the noble cause of freeing Barotseland from the yokes of discrimination, poverty, illiteracy and disease which came as a result of bonding Barotseland to thieves. And today the hatred for the Lozis and North western Rhodesian tribes is no longer a secret, but it has been professionalized.
In Zambia today, it is neither a crime nor a sin for most of the private radio and television stations located in Lusaka, the capital city of Zambia, which are licensed to broadcast in English as the official language but instead, have resorted to using only two native languages, that is, Bemba and Nyanja. Even the national’s Public Broadcaster ZNBC, despite English being the official language, their DJs and TV presenters have also resorted to only using two native languages in addition to English to the displeasure of well meaning Zambians.
If the time for the Lozi people has come for them to restore their territory, why should a person who does not hail from Barotseland stop them in the first place? Zambia has no powers, whatsoever, to continue enslaving the Lozi nationals. The people are tired of discrimination, segregation, poverty, arrests and subjugation.
By Saleya Kwalombota
LUSAKA – President Robert Mugabe came face to face with how Zambians feel about his continued 35-year-long stay in power. Huge crowds of Zambians chanted “MUGABE MUST GO” at the Radisson Blu Hotel in the capital Lusaka.
Mugabe is in Lusaka to attend the inauguration of Zambia’s new president on Saturday following elections held this week. Strangely Mugabe left for Zambia even before the results had been announced.
The Radisson Blu Hotel is the current base of the opposition candidate Hakainde Hichilema of the United Party for National Development.
Ruling party Patriotic Front candidate Edgar Lungu was tipped to win the presidential election after building what appeared to be an unassailable lead against his closet rival, Hichilema.
Mugabe, who is chair of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and incoming African Union (AU) chair, was met at the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport by Zambia’s Minister of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs Nkandu Luo and Zimbabwe’s ambassador Getrude Takawira and her deputy Marshall Matutu.
The elections in Zambia followed the death of President Michael Sata in October 2014. - Nehanda Radio
Hakainde Hichilema claims ruling party candidate Edgar Lungu’s win was "predetermined"
Zambia's ruling party candidate, Edgar Lungu, won the presidential election on Saturday with 48.3 per cent of the vote, the Electoral Commission of Zambia said.
Mr Lungu narrowly defeated his closest rival, Hakainde Hichilema, in the contest to succeed Michael Sata, who died in office in October aged 77.
Mr Hichilema of the United Party for National Development (UPND) won 46.67 per cent of the vote.
Mr Lungu's victory was greeted with cheers and dancing after the chairwoman of the Electoral Commission of Zambia Ireen Mambilima, announced the results of the Tuesday vote which Mr Hichilema had earlier denounced as a sham.
“If Edgar Lungu is sworn in as president he will certainly be an illegitimate president going by what we have discovered at the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ),” Mr Hichilema, a millionaire cattle-rancher, told a press conference in the capital Lusaka on Saturday afternoon.
“He truly knows that the results that have been given to him by individuals at the ECZ are not from the citizens who voted. A stolen election does not reflect the will of the people and is not going to deliver.”
His claims followed several tense days after the vote count was delayed by heavy rains preventing the delivery of ballot boxes from outlying areas.
Despite Mr Hichilema's allegations, he appealed for calm from his supporters, reminding them that the general election in 2016 was not far away.
"People who steal elections come and go. The people of Zambia are always there,” he said.
Mr Hichilema had made allegations about foul play before the polls closed, saying helicopters carrying his election officials had been blocked from taking off, and ballot boxes had failed to arrive in strongholds of his UPND party.
He has also accused the ruling Patriotic Front of corruption in the last general election in 2011, and subsequent by-elections.
At his last rally in a sports stadium in the capital, Mr Lungu warned his rival not to make trouble. “I urge him to accept the result because if he loses and becomes funny I will deal with him,” he said. “I will not hesitate to enforce the law. I will jealously guard the election."
The Southern African Development Community, which sent election monitors to Zambia, declared it “free and fair” on January 22. - The Telegraph