Media Editor, Barotseland Post

Media Editor, Barotseland Post

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The UK has voted by 52% to 48% to leave the European Union after 43 years in an historic referendum, a BBC forecast suggests.

London and Scotland voted strongly to stay in the EU but the remain vote has been undermined by poor results in the north of England.

Voters in Wales and the English shires have backed Brexit in large numbers.

The pound fell to its lowest level against the dollar since 1985 as the markets reacted to the results.

Referendum turnout was higher than at last year's general election.

Labour's Shadow chancellor John McDonnell said the Bank of England may have to intervene to shore up the pound, which lost 3% within moments of the first result showing a strong result for Leave in Sunderland and fell as much as 6.5% against the euro.

'INDEPENDENCE DAY'

UKIP leader Nigel Farage - who has campaigned for the past 20 years for Britain to leave the EU - told supporters "this will be a victory for ordinary people, for decent people".

Mr Farage - who predicted a Remain win at the start of the night after polls suggested that would happen - said Thursday, 23 June would "go down in history as our independence day".

He called on Prime Minister David Cameron, who called the referendum but campaigned passionately for a Remain vote, to quit "immediately".

Nigel Farage said it was a victory for ordinary people

A Labour source said: "If we vote to leave, Cameron should seriously consider his position."

But pro-Leave Conservatives including Boris Johnson and Michael Gove have signed a letter to Mr Cameron urging him to stay on whatever the result.

Labour former Europe Minister Keith Vaz told the BBC the British people had voted with their "emotions" and rejected the advice of experts who had warned about the economic impact of leaving the EU.

He added: "It will be catastrophic for our country, for the rest of Europe and for the rest of the world."

EXIT PROCESS

Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said that the EU vote "makes clear that the people of Scotland see their future as part of the European Union" after all 32 local authority areas returned majorities for Remain.

Britain would be the first country to leave the EU since its formation - but a leave vote will not immediately mean Britain ceases to be a member of the 28-nation bloc.

That process could take a minimum of two years, with Leave campaigners suggesting during the referendum campaign that it should not be completed until 2020 - the date of the next scheduled general election.

The prime minister will have to decide when to trigger Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, which would give the UK two years to negotiate its withdrawal.

Once Article 50 has been triggered a country can not rejoin without the consent of all member states.

Mr Cameron has previously said he would trigger Article 50 as soon as possible after a leave vote but Boris Johnson and Michael Gove who led the campaign to get Britain out of the EU have said he should not rush into it.

But they also said they want to make immediate changes before the UK actually leaves the EU, such as curbing the power of EU judges and limiting the free movement of workers, potentially in breach the UK's treaty obligations.

The government will also have to negotiate its future trading relationship with the EU and fix trade deals with non-EU countries.

In Whitehall and Westminster, there will now begin the massive task of unstitching the UK from more than 40 years of EU law, deciding which directives and regulations to keep, amend or ditch.

The Leave campaign argued during a bitter four-month referendum campaign that the only way Britain could "take back control" of its own affairs would be to leave the EU.

Leave dismissed warnings from economists and international bodies about the economic impact of Brexit as "scaremongering" by a self-serving elite - Courtesy of BBC

 

The closure of the Post Newspaper has attracted widespread condemnation with media defence and human rights groups across the world calling on President Edgar Lungu to intervene.

Amnesty International said the closure of The Post newspaper is a disturbing development clearly designed to silence critical media voices.

Amnesty International’s Director for Southern Africa Deprose Muchena said the closure of the Post is an attempt to silence independent media voices in the country ahead of an election.

Mr Muchena said the shutting down of one of Zambia’s main independent newspapers in the run-up to an election is an affront to media freedom and the authorities should immediately reverse their decision.

And the International Press Institute (IPI) also condemned the seizure of The Post newspaper which led to its shutting down of operations.

IPI Director of Advocacy and Communications Steven M. Ellis said the organisation condemns the seizure of The Post which is all the more disturbing given its proximity to the upcoming election.

Mr Ellis said the misuse of state authority to silence the only major media outlet giving opposition parties a platform can only be seen as an effort to deny voters the information they need to make an informed decision about their future and an assault on democracy.

“We urge the government to reverse this decision and allow The Post and all media outlets in Zambia to report the news freely and without pressure.”

On Tuesday, ZRA ordered the closure of the publishing company Post Newspapers Limited, demanding over K53 million in tax arrears.

But the newspaper says that ZRA is selectively applying the law to attack the news organisation.

Last year on 15 July 2015, Police arrested The Post’s Editor in Chief Fred M’membe and one of its journalists, Mukosha Funga, for an article published that March regarding a corruption scandal involving State House aide Kaizer Zulu.

Mr. M’membe and Ms. Funga were arrested, spent a night in custody and charged with publishing classified information, before being released on bail before the state entered a nolle prosequi.

ABOVE: The Litunga Lubosi Imwiko II’s motorcade spotted in Limulunga as His Majesty made way to a church service at St Lawrence Catholic church in Limulunga today, 5th June 2016. Video courtesy of Barotseland Watchdog (BWD)

 

The Litunga of Barotseland, Lubosi Imwiko II, has today made a rare public church attendance at Limulunga’s St Lawrence Catholic church, where he personally subscribes membership, to finally prove to his subjects that he is not only alive but also enjoys good health.

A short while ago, Barotseland Watchdog (BWD) posted a video clip of a police and security detail assigned to His Majesty by the Zambian government, with the middle car bearing the Litunga’s flag, driving towards the location of the Limulunga Parish and later some photos of His Majesty in church with his indunas and other parishioners. His Majesty is also expected to be ‘Bloused’ or inducted into the Church Men's League.

The embattled Litunga is reported to have arrived back in Barotseland, from Lusaka, either on Friday night or early Saturday amid tight security, when it became apparently clear that His majesty’s absence in Barotseland was perpetuating speculations of his demise.

Although earlier last week some senior BRE indunas had dispelled the rumour of his involvement in a tragic road accident that purportedly claimed His Majesty’s life and that of his the driver, Lubosi Imwiko II’s continued personal absence in Barotseland was still a matter of concern.

This, some reports have said, is the reason why an immediate relevant public personal appearance had become necessary for proof of the Litunga’s safety.

More details to follow.

The Litunga Lubosi Imwiko II’s motorcade is spotted in Limulunga as His Majesty made way to a church service at St Lawrence Catholic church in Limulunga today, 5th June 2016. Video courtesy of Barotseland Watchdog (BWD)

 

Reproduced Letter to the Editor at the Daily Nation, Zambia, Posted on 26 May 2016.

Barotseland’s quest for return to nationhood and Statehood

Dear Editor,

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.

Below is an article published by the Somaliland Press as reproduced by UNPO:

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.

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.