Media Editor, Barotseland Post
Recently, in August of 2019, Panthera, the global wild cat conservation organization, and the Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) in partnership with Peace Parks Foundation and Cartier launched the Saving Spots project – an innovative and culturally-sensitive conservation initiative that seeks to protect declining wild cat populations using synthetic leopard, serval and lion furs, known as ‘Heritage Furs’.
This partnership was announced in New York, NY, USA, through a press release of 8th August 2019 by Panthera’s Susie Weller Sheppard.
The Press Briefing is here below reproduced in full.
As the African-American Homecoming team emotionally retraced their ancestors' painful journey through the Lwanginga River basin, hundreds of their brothers and sisters in Kalabo were on hand to walk with them and later console them with a regatta on the Lwanginga.
The visit to Kalabo happened on Tuesday, 13th August 2019, to help the African-American Homecoming team retrace some of the routes that their enslaved ancestors may have passed as they were taken away into American slavery centuries ago during the transatlantic slave trade.
Their activities for the day ended with an emotional visit to the Kaasa ka ma Mbali at Namaloko village in the Barotse plains.
And Barotse social media, BBN, reports that the team was officially welcomed by Kalabo District Commissioner (DC), Fridah Luhila, and her Sikongo District counterpart, Bright Tombi, at the Kalabo District Administration office.
The Homecoming team later paid a courtesy call on acting Muleta, who is the most senior Induna and representative of Her Royal Highness, Mulena Mukwae Mboajikana of Libonda Royal Palace, after which they proceeded to the Kalabo harbour at the banks of the Lwanginga River where the local Homecoming organizing committee had set up a regatta (canoeing competition) for their entertainment.
King Mulambwa Santulu, the tenth male Litunga of the then Alui Kingdom, which was later named Barotseland, and Moses Grandy, an African-American former slave, were on Sunday afternoon recipients of honours from their respective descendants for the distinguished roles they played in ending the centuries-long transatlantic slave trade.
At a national prayer rally held on 12th August 2019 to commemorate 400 years since the first African slaves arrived in English America at Mongu Stadium presided over by the Honorable Ngambela, Prime Minister of Barotseland, Mukela Manyando, and attended by thousands of Barotse people from across the Kingdom, the two historical figures were given honorariums in recognition of their rare courage and determination.
The Ngambela of Barotseland received the honorary trophy on behalf of His Majesty the Litunga, King of Barotseland and the Kingdom, while Mr Eric Anthony Mubita Sheppard received the honorary trophy on behalf of Moses Grandy.
His Majesty the Litunga, King of Barotseland, Lubosi Imwiko II has warmly welcomed the African-American homecoming team led by Diversity Restoration Solutions (DRS), Eric Anthony Sheppard, and has given his royal blessings for this week’s 400th anniversary commemorations of the beginning of slavery in English America as well as the planned future restoration activities to be undertaken by DRS in the Kingdom Barotseland.
This happened on Friday morning, 9th August, 2019 at the Litunga’s winter palace, in the royal capital of Limulunga after the African-Americans had arrived to a thunderous welcome in Mongu on Thursday night, at about 23:00 hrs local time, where thousands had waited all day to give them a befitting welcome never before witnessed in the Kingdom.
And Mr Eric Anthony Sheppard, leader and founder of DRS, was given a rare honour when His Majesty the Litunga gave him a new name, Mubita, while Prof. Zoe has taken the name Sibeso!
A President empowered through the currently proposed Constitution of Zambia (Amendment) Bill of 2019, also known as Bill 10, can and could dismantle Barotseland without any consultation, Elias Munshya, an international legal practitioner has warned.
Weighing in on the controversial bill, the Zambian lawyer based in Canada has bemoaned that Bill 10 explicitly refuses to acknowledge any role for Barotseland as it empowers the President of Zambia with a unilateral power to split provinces and to create new provinces, without recourse to the people concerned or to the Parliament of Zambia.
He fears, therefore, that Barotseland is now at the disposal of the unilateral power of the President to do with it, whatever the President wishes!
“Just when we were hoping that wounds of Barotseland could be healed by acknowledging its constitutional status within a united Zambia, Mr Lubinda comes up with a bill that completely undermines the viability of a united nation, as a President empowered through Bill 10 can dismantle Barotseland. This is not right!” complained Mr Munshya in an article published in the widely circulated Zambian daily tabloid, The Mast on July 23, 2019.
After detaining him at Kambule remand prison for over two weeks without charge or trial, the Zambian state has finally charged Munyinda Munukayumbwa, 25, with the charge of ‘promoting tribal war’ contrary to section 46 of the Penal Code Chapter 87 of the laws of Zambia, the first time such a charge has been slapped on any Barotse activist.
This is in a matter many Barotse people have called political intimidation and victimisation as Munyinda’s arrest came shortly after he had a social media row with the King’s traditional Prime Minister, Ngambela Mukela Manyando, over some matter pertaining to the Barotse Royal Establishment’s alleged neglect of Chief Mwene Chengele’s retainers who are now languishing in extended incarceration without trial since February, 2019 for allegedly assaulting some people from the opposing side in a longstanding succession wrangle in Nañoko Area of Barotseland.
When Munyinda’s matter came up for court hearing and possible charge yesterday, the Zambian state charged Munyinda with six counts of ‘Promoting Tribal War’ all contrary to section 46 of the Penal Code Chapter 87 of the laws of Zambia.
And Munyinda Munukayumbwa has pleaded not guilty to the six charges, which are all alleged to be related to his Facebook postings.
“Munyinda Munukayumbwa is accused of running Barotseland Watchdog and authoring articles on his Facebook accounts which according to the police is Promoting Tribal War,” the Social Media BBN has reported.