Media Editor, Barotseland Post
Reproduced Letter to the Editor at the Daily Nation, Zambia, Posted on 26 May 2016.
Barotseland’s quest for return to nationhood and Statehood
In recent times, the readership of your esteemed newspaper has been incessantly bombarded with publications of the Barotseland Agreement (BA) 1964 as ordered by President Edgar Chagwa Lungu.
From the outset, it must be stated that the current publications of the BA are not a new phenomenon.
It is vividly recalled that our late President Michael Chilufya Sata (MHSRP) did also order the publication of the historic BA a few months after assuming office.
That publication did nothing to resolve the long-standing impasse over Barotseland’s quest for return to nationhood and statehood following the abrogation or repudiation of the BA in 1969 by the government of the day.
Mere publication of the BA even a thousand times will not resolve the issue of Barotseland. It is important for the media to highlight the other side of the coin, so to speak.
Allow me to take advantage of this communication to put some issues into their proper and true perspective.
Firstly, it is not correct for President Lungu to insinuate that Barotseland, nicknamed Western Province, wants to “secede” from the rest of Zambia and that the BA does not provide for “secession”.
Our President needs to understand and recognise that secession cannot and indeed must not apply to Barotseland.
Unlike all the other provinces, Barotseland was a nation State prior to 1964 when the Litunga, the King of Barotseland, in good faith, appended his signature on behalf of his people that Barotseland becomes part of Zambia as one country and one nation BUT ONLY UNDER CERTAIN CONDITIONS as highlighted in the BA.
President Lungu has also stated that the BA does not provide for so-called “secession” but interestingly, he fails to recognise the fact that the BA does also not provide for abrogation or repudiation of the Agreement as happened in 1969.
It is an open secret that in 1969, the government of the day unilaterally enacted legislation without consulting the other party to the Agreement, the Litunga and his people.
This action effectively broke, abrogated or repudiated the BA and took away the powers of the Litunga that he held in Barotseland prior to 1964 when Barotseland was a self-governing Protectorate. The Litunga and his people were effectively “dribbled”.
I am appealing that you favourably consider giving the same prominence to publication of the Barotse National Council (BNC) resolutions of 14th March 2014 so that your readers and the general public can be enabled to make a more balanced and enlightened opinion on the current impasse on the issue of Barotseland’s peaceful and non-violent quest for reversion to nationhood.
What option does a husband or wife has when either one refuses to restore a broken marriage but to revert to their original status?
William Harrington – 1st Trustee of Barotse National Freedom Alliance (BNFA).
Celebrations took place in Somaliland on 18 May 2016, in commemoration of its independence from Somalia in 1991. In addition to colourful displays of patriotism and joy, the government of Somaliland organised a conference which decried the international community’s lack of recognition of Somaliland’s independence. Koigi wa Wamwere, a Kenyan politician, human rights activist and journalist, wrote in response to the events, highlighting that it is now high time for Kenya to take the lead in the international community and to formally recognise Somaliland’s independence.
On May 18, I was invited to Somaliland to participate in celebrations of her independence from Somalia on May 18, 1991, after entering into a legally non-binding union with Somalia in 1960.
The celebration displayed incredible colour, joy, pomp and patriotism that totally lacks in Kenyan celebrations.
On the eve of the great celebration, the government of Somaliland organised a conference, in which her leaders, intellectuals and well-wishers like Gerard Prunier, the author of The Rwanda Crisis, decried lack of recognition for her independence and sovereignty by the international community, 25 years since her second declaration of independence in 1991.
After 5 days I left Hargeisa feeling that like South Sudan, Eritrea and members of former Soviet Union and Yugoslavia that are now independent, Somaliland is also entitled to independence and sovereignty despite her break up with Somalia.
First, the international community is wrong to deny independence to Somaliland in defense of a union that broke up 25 years ago.
Second, Somalia’s dead union with Somaliland can only be resurrected and consummated voluntarily never by military or diplomatic intervention.
Third, when Senegal and Gambia formed the union of Senegambia in 182 and later split in 1989, the international community did not deny either Gambia or Senegal diplomatic recognition as it is now denying Somaliland.
Fourth, though entered with the best of intentions, Somaliland’s union with Somali was without freedom, democracy and equity and was therefore self-negating.
As for Kenya, there are many reasons why she should recognise Somaliland diplomatically. One because Somaliland and Somalia entered their union in pursuit of the dream of Greater Somali that is a great danger to the peace and territorial integrity of both Kenya and Ethiopia. Kenya should support independence of Somaliland as a strong statement against the danger of Greater Somalia.
HOUSE AT PEACE
Two, while Somaliland has renounced Greater Somalia with the black star on its flag, Somalia still cherishes the dream of Greater Somali as symbolized by the white five-point star on her blue flag. Kenya would therefore be excused to believe that if Somalia succeeds in vanquishing the al-Shabaab, she could turn her attention to Kenya and Ethiopia, the only obstacles to the dream of Greater Somalia.
Three, as Somaliland recently opened an office of representation in Nairobi, Kenya should reciprocate by opening her embassy in Hargeisa.
Four, that there are more Kenyans working in Somaliland than people from any other African country means Kenya acknowledges the logic of recognizing and working with Somaliland.
Five, a Kenyan proverb says “what is born cannot be unborn.” Having been born out of the union with Somalia in 1991, Somaliland cannot be unborn and forced back into the womb of Somalia, not at the age of 25 years.
Six, Somaliland is a house that is in peace with itself and her neighbours. On the other hand, Somalia is a country that is in the fire of wars. In the interest of humanity, the international community should continue to help Somalia end the war that has engulfed her before forcing her to embrace and set Somaliland on fire too.
Seven, the union in whose name Somalia denies Somaliland independence and sovereignty is not legally binding since charters establishing that union were never signed by either country.
Eight, unlike Somalia, Somaliland has managed to eradicate terrorism of al-Shabaab and unlike Southern Sudan, she has also managed to maintain internal cohesion and contain the ideology of clannism. Yet both Somalia and South Sudan are recognised.
Nine, Kenya can recognise Somaliland, keep her diplomatic relations with Somalia and work together against al-Shabaab terrorism.
Ten, burying the dream of Greater Somalia by recognizing Somaliland will kill the emergence of greater ethnic republics like the Greater Maasai nation or Greater Luo nation whose people span across East African countries.
Eleven, denying Somaliland recognition is injustice that denies her people trade with other countries, inflates prices of daily necessities, denies Somaliland youth opportunities to study abroad and denies Somaliland economic support from donors and international organisations. Kenya should say no to this injustice by recognizing Somaliland.
(Letter here published for public records only)
Office of the Ngambela
Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE)
12th May, 2016
RE: THE PURPORTED DIALOGUE WITH THE ZAMBIAN GOVERNMENT OVER THE NOW NULL AND VOID BAROTSELAND AGREEMENT 1964 IS ILLEGAL CONTRARY TO UNITED NATIONS GENERAL ASSEMBLY RESOLUTION 1514 AS WELL AS THE VIENNA CONVENTION ON THE LAW OF TREATIES
Reference is made to the above captioned matter.
As Barotseland National Youth League; we would like to petition you the BRE over the following questions and you must provide answers to them without fail.
CLARIFICATION ON THE ENGAGING OF THE STAKEHOLDERS IN THE ISSUE OF BAROTSELAND AGREEMENT 1964 (BAROTSELAND STATUS QUO).
Acknowledging the fact that engaging all stakeholders in Barotseland over the matter of Barotseland Agreement 1964 were already engaged in 2012 on the 27th March, and resolved as follows; we quote the preamble of the Barotse National Council (BNC) resolutions,
"We the people of Barotseland and deliberated as a National Council on 26th and 27th March, 2012 in Limulunga in the Barotseland Nation on the status and future of the Barotseland Nation in the republic of Zambia, hereby declare this day of Tuesday March 27th at the close of our deliberation as follows:
Recognizing that the Barotseland Agreement 1964 provided the basis on which Barotseland become an integral part of Zambia and took other agreements either to subsisting between her Majesty the Queen and the Litunga of Barotseland.
Acknowledgement that the Barotseland Agreement, 1964’s aim was to provide a safe guard against encroachment on the powers of the people of Barotseland to self government by Central Government of Zambia,
Realizing that the new state of Zambia, which came into being on October 24, 1964, never ratified the Barotseland Agreement entered into between Barotseland and Northern Rhodesia Government on May18, 1964, and despite its non-ratification, unilaterally abrogated by Zambia in 1969,
Aware that the unilateral termination of the Barotseland Agreement 1964 by the government of Zambia is a violation of the right of Barotseland to self-determination and repudiation of the purported integration of the territory of Barotseland into Zambia,
Recognizing that successive Zambia n government never took steps necessary to ensure that the laws for the time being in force in the republic of Zambia are not inconsistent with the provisions of the Agreements.
Aware that successive Zambian governments continued to undermine the modernization of Barotseland institutions and governance required to run an independent modern state as well as meddle in the national affairs of Barotseland, resulting in conflict in some sections of the Barotseland Nation.
Recalling that successive Zambian governments illegally administered and control Barotseland by intimidation and force since October 24, 1964, despite continued protests from the people of Barotseland against such transgressions, including futile calls to restore the Agreement,
Knowing that Barotseland’s right to autonomy on governance and political affairs is inborn and has been protected by treaties since the first encounter with foreign powers.
Rejecting the expectation or notion by the Zambian government that we surrender our autonomy as expressed in the Barotseland Agreement 1964 in return for economic development,
We now inform Zambia and the International Community that we finally accept the unilateral nullification and abrogation of the Barotseland and Agreement 1964 by the Zambian government which by the Zambian government, which action has freed Barotseland from being part of Zambia.
In line with the postliminium doctrine, we can no longer be obliged to honor an international Agreement that the other party has nullified and abrogated, which action has resulted us to our original status.’’ END OF QUOTE
QUESTION NUMBER ONE
Now the question is what is the main purpose of re-engaging us the stakeholders again since we were already engaged in 2012, where we declared the independence of Barotseland?
The 2012 DECLARATION is irreversible by international law which is the United Nations General Assembly Resolution Number 1514(xv) of the fifteenth session on agenda item 87 in the preamble we quote the following;
"Believing that the process of liberation is irreversible and irresistible and that in order to avoid serious crises, an end must be put to colonialism and all practices of segregation and discrimination associated therewith,……’’ C.F United Nations General Assembly Resolution 1514 [XV] END OF QUOTE.
DIALOGUE WITH THE ZAMBIAN GOVERNMENT
Now coming to the dialogue with the Zambian government you the Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) are talking about in your position statement, what is this dialogue all about?
The stakeholders that you want to re-engage were already engaged in 2012 on March 26th and 27th and we quote the position statement of the Barotse National Council (BNC) Resolutions.
POSITION STATEMENT OF THE BAROTSE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF 2012
"We the people of Barotseland declare that Barotseland is now free to pursue its own self determination and destiny.
We are committed to a peaceful disengagement with the Zambian government in the same manner that we attempted integration as a state within Zambia.
We call on the international community to support our legitimate right to self determination as a people and Nation by resolving as follows...” END OF QUOTE.
You the Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) you even thanked the Zambian President Mr. Edgar Chagwa Lungu for giving you guidelines on how to solve the now NULL and VOID Barotseland Agreement 1964.
QUESTION NUMBER TWO.
The question that we have for you as BRE is; are you aware that the Barotseland Agreement 1964 is an International treaty which is regulated by the Vienna convention on the law of treaties?
And we quote Article 60 of the Vienna convention on the law of treaties as following;
"A material breach of a bilateral treaty by one of the parties entitles the other to invoke the breach as ground for terminating the treaty or suspending its operations in whole or in part...’’C.F Article 60 END OF QUOTE.
Are you also aware that an International treaty such as the Barotseland Agreement 1964 cannot be overturned by an internal law such as the Zambian constitution?
We further quote the Vienna convention Article 27.
"A party may not invoke the provisions of the internal law as a justification for its failure to perform a treaty’’ c.f Article 27 END OF QUOTE.
Finally we would also like to find out from you the BRE as to why you are rushing into dialogue with the Zambian government, when so many Barotseland Nationals are appearing before illegal Zambian courts and others have been given long term jail sentences by the same Zambian government which is occupying Barotseland illegally over the same matter of Barotseland Agreement 1964?
BAROTSELAND NATIONAL YOUTH LEAGUE (BNYL)’S POSITION STATEMENT.
We the Barotseland National Youth League (BNYL) declare that we shall at all costs not allow you the Barotse Royal Establishment to take us in circles.
We further declare that we shall defend and protect the Barotse National Council (BNC) resolutions of the 26th and 27th March 2012 and that these resolutions are irreversible and irresistible in accordance with the international law which is the United Nations General Assembly Resolution Number 1514 (XV) of 14th December, 1960.
We also declare that we shall defend, uphold and protect International laws on treaties, contracts and as well as general principles of law.
God bless Barotseland Kingdom!!!
MS.INONGE A. AKATOKA-CHAIRPERSON GENERAL, BNYL,
MR. BORIS MUZIBA-DEPUTY CHAIRMAN – GENERAL, BNYL,
MR-NAYOTO MWENDA- SECRETARY GENERAL, BNYL,
MS.WAKUNYAMBO ILUKUI -DEPUTY SECRETARY GENERAL, BNYL,
MR. SIKWIBILE WASILOTA- NATIONAL CO-ORDINATOR, BNYL,
MR. ISIMAA MATAA – COMMITTEE MEMBER, BNYL,
MS.LUNGOWE AKAMANDISA –LEGAL AFFAIRS AND HUMAN RIGHTS OFFICER, BNYL,
MR. IMBULA WALUSIKU-DEPUTY NATIONAL CO-ORDINATOR, BNYL,
MS. NAMAKAU MBOO –TRUSTEE, BNYL,
MS. NAMASIKU AKALEMWA-TRUSTEE, BNYL
CC: UNITED NATIONS
ALL FOREIGN COUNTRIES
ALL CITIZENS OF BAROTSELAND
ALL MEDIA HOUSES
The BBC reports that Barcelona fans will now be allowed to bring pro-Catalan independence flags to Sunday's Copa del Rey final with Sevilla.
Supporters had planned to have Scotland flags at the Vicente Calderon after the government's representative in Madrid decided not to allow Estelada flags for "operational and security reasons".
But a Madrid judge has overruled that decision after Barcelona appealed.
The club had said it was "an attack on the freedom of expression".
After the flag was banned, Catalan nationalist organisations had decided to hand out 10,000 Scottish Saltires at the Madrid final.
Scotland voted to stay in the United Kingdom in 2014, but the Spanish government will not allow Catalonia a similar referendum.
"We've chosen this symbol because it highlights the different treatment that Catalonia receives from Spain, compared with the UK government's treatment of Scotland," a group of bodies said in a statement
Meanwhile, the Associated Press reporting on the same story has said the Catalan separatists can display pro-independence flags at the Copa del Rey final on Sunday, when Barcelona will face Sevilla for the title, according to a Spanish court ruling.
The Madrid-based court accepted the appeal filed by Barcelona and a lawyer’s association to challenge the Spanish government’s ban of the flags announced earlier this week.
Government officials had argued the ban of the politically charged flags formed part of a group of security measures being implemented for the game at Vicente Calderón.
Barcelona said the ban of the Estelada flag symbolising support for Catalonia’s breakaway from the rest of Spain was an attack on the freedom of expression.
Pro-independence flags have become a common sight at Barcelona’s home matches in recent years during an upswing of separatist sentiment in the north-eastern region. The club have been fined by Uefa because of pro-secession chants and flags displayed by their fans during Champions League matches.
The initial ban by the government sparked a debate in Spain, and was heavily criticised by politicians from Catalonia and Barcelona, the region’s largest city. Catalonia’s pro-independence regional leader, Carles Puigdemont, originally responded to the government’s ban of the flags by saying he would not attend the final. He then changed his stance and said he would go after the court ruled to permit the flags.
Copa del Rey finals in recent years have been used by separatists among Barcelona’s large fan base to display pro-independence flags. Spain’s King Felipe VI was loudly jeered by both Catalans and Basques before last year’s final between Barcelona and Athletic Bilbao at the Camp Nou.
Barcelona, who won La Liga last weekend, will also be trying to defend their cup title. Sevilla won their third straight Europa League final on Wednesday.
Zambia’s Radio JOY FM will tonight, 1st May, 2016, HOST LIVE & ONLINE a debate on Barotseland at 18:00 hrs CAT.
TOPIC: LUNGU AND BRE BAN OF BAROTSELAND AGREEMENT 1964 PUBLIC
To Tune LIVE, in the areas from MONZE, MAZABUKA through LUSAKA to Zambia’s COPPERBELT: frequency 106.9
STUDIO NUMBER: +260211222640
To DEBATE Live online find: http://www.odyovi.com/zambia/lusaka/free-online-english-radio/listen-live/joy-fm-1069
ALSO https://www.facebook.com/JoyfmRadioZambia/ on FACE BOOK.
The discussion will be hosted by Zambia's renowned media critic and analyst, KASEBAMASHILA KASEBA.
This is your program and it will feature some Barotseland nationalist via online.
Never miss this interesting program as we bring the issue of Barotseland in its right perspective.
YESTERDAY FAILED PRIME TV SHOW on Barotseland
In the same breath, we wish to APOLOGIZE that a similar program could not take place yesterday Saturday, 30th April, 2016, as advertised on Prime TV due to studio technical connectivity problems.
We are, however, hopeful that today’s scheduled RADIO program on JOY FM will be a success.
Thanking you in advance for tuning in!
Saleya Kwalombota, Barotseland Nationalist and Program Coordinator.
The social media UK based group, Bulozi London, has bemoaned the lack of participation in the national affairs of Barotseland from many Lozis abroad.
Writing on social media, Bulozi London wished that the Lozis abroad did more to complement the efforts of their fellow nationals in Barotseland who were giving their all, and many times risking their lives, jobs and freedom just to make sure that Barotseland retained her dignity as a self determined nation.
Here below is Bulozi London’s expressed frustrations on social media and hopefully many Lozis abroad will be encouraged to find the many ways they could participate in the affairs of their nation, Barotseland.
“The majority of Malozi in the Diaspora are not committed to the cause of self-rule in Barotseland.
They live so much in the comfort zone such that their daily struggle is when there is no internet access at work to blog.
Wondering how many have responded to calls like the recent one from Mwana Mulena Akashambatwa Mbikusita Lewanika ( http://barotselandpost.com/index.php/all-news/barotseland/item/2116-help-for-afumba-and-other-barotseland-leaders-legal-fees-urgently-required ) for small donations to support the incarcerated freedom fighters like Afumba Mombotwa and company.
You then have the audacity to inbox asking ‘Kanti zabulozi lizamaela kai?’
Most people back home have sacrificed their jobs and freedom for a future independent Barotseland and you can’t even deep (dip) into your pockets to at least send a $10 dollars!!