Media Editor, Barotseland Post
A few days after concluding to engage the Zambian government through dialogue for the restoration of the defunct Barotseland Agreement 1964, the Privy Council is set to reconvene to possibly reconsider its earlier resolutions, a Limulunga source has reported.
The decision to reconvene the Privy Council came barely a day after the extended Privy Council had concluded its sitting with the conditional resolution to engage the Zambian government over the defunct 1964 agreement on Friday, 29th November.
“Yes! The Privy Council had concluded that the Zambian Government be engaged in a dialogue to restore the agreement on the condition that the current Zambian Bill 10 immediately includes a clause for the restoration of the defunct 1964 agreement, however, the Council may now have to reconvene, possibly on the 9th of December, to consider new matters that have arisen since the Council resolution,” the source revealed.
Reportedly, there was panic shortly after the resolutions of the Privy Council when information filtered through to them that the Constitutional Court (ConCourt) of Zambia had made a ruling in favour of embattled Webby Mulubisha contesting the Mwene Mutondo chieftaincy against the long-held cultural procedures of the Kingdom of Barotseland.
Mulubisha, a well-known rebel against the Litunga of Barotseland, using the recent 2016 amended Zambian Constitution, had petitioned the Attorney General of Zambia at the ConCourt asking whether he needed the recognition of the Zambian President to be a Chief.
This was in the matter of Article 1 and 165 of the constitution of Zambia and another related matter of the constitutionality of sections 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 of the Chiefs Act, Cap.287 of the Laws of Zambia.
However, in passing judgment on 27th November 2019, the ConCourt ruled and declared Sections 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 of the named Chiefs Act to be inconsistent with the named Article 165 of the Zambian Constitution as amended in 2016, and are, therefore, unconstitutional and void.
The ConCourt further ordered that the sections in question be expunged from the statute book.
“It’s unfortunate that the other prisoner (Afumba Mombotwa) who has been left is being tortured because when you are informed that you are going to be pardoned by the President and later on you hear a minister say that ‘you have not been pardoned’, its torture of the worst kind.” Kambwili.
Lusaka, National Democratic Congress (NDC) leader, Chishimba Kambwili, has charged that the incoherence of statements over the pardoning of prisoners on the presidents birthday is proof that there is a chipante pante govt in place.
On Monday, State House Press Aide Isaac Chipampe announced in a statement that the President had pardoned 5 prisoners from various correctional facilities to mark his 63rd birthday.
“To mark His 63rd Birthday which falls today, His Excellency Dr Edgar Chagwa Lungu has pardoned five inmates from various correctional facilities. The President has pardoned Chief Mulongwe, Former Minister in the Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) Government Maxwell Mwale, Journalist Derrick Sinjela, Afumba Mombofwa, and former Zambia Airforce Commander Christopher Singogo. The President’s action is in line with Article 97 of the Constitution of Zambia Chapter (l) of the Laws of Zambia which provides for Presidential Pardon and Substitution of Severe Punishments imposed on the convicted,” read the statement.
But later the same day, Home Affairs Minister Stephen Kampyongo during a press briefing announced only 4 names leaving out Mombofwa, and when asked, the minister said his statement superseded the earlier statement issued by State House.
"I believe I am a free man who should be out of this prison and be with my loved ones, having been pardoned by the Zambian President on Monday!” Afumba Mombotwa.
In an exclusive recorded interview obtained by Barotseland Post earlier today, Mr Afumba Mombotwa (60) has bemoaned his continued incarceration more than two days after the President of Zambia had pardoned him.
And Afumba Mombotwa has urged those reportedly accusing the Litunga, King of Barotseland, of having a hand in his continued stay in prison after his presidential pardon to stop it because presidential pardons are the prerogative of the President.
Meanwhile, Mr Mombotwa believes he is a free man who should be out of the maximum prison facility by now to be with his loved ones, having been pardoned by the Zambian President on Monday, 11th November 2019.
He has, therefore, called his continued incarceration a very serious anomaly that the Zambian president, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu, should immediately resolve.
In yet to be explained circumstances, the Barotseland independence leader’s name was expunged from the list of pardoned inmates publicized by both State House and the President on Monday.
When asked by a journalist why the number of names pardoned by the president had reduced from five (5) to four (4) in a subsequent press briefing on Monday, with the notable absence of Mr Afumba Mombotwa’s name, Minister of Home Affairs, Stephen Kampyongo, explained that the list he was presenting was the official list and that any other list circulated or publicised earlier was overruled.
- Self-declared government based in the United Kingdom says it will push for recognition at the United Nations.
Dissident political leaders from the Indian state of Manipur on Tuesday said they were unilaterally declaring independence from India and forming a government-in-exile in Britain.
The former princely state became part of India in 1949, two years after the country won independence from Britain, but has since seen decades-long violent separatist campaigns.
Narengbam Samarjit, external affairs minister in the self-declared Manipur State Council, said the exiled government would push for recognition at the United Nations.
"We will run the de jure exiled government here ... from today onwards," he told reporters in London after a declaration of independence first announced in Manipur in 2012 was read aloud.
"We will seek recognition from different nations ... to become a [UN] member. We hope many of the countries will recognise our independence."
Manipur, one of India's smallest states with a population of about just 2.8 million people, is one of the so-called "Seven Sisters" - a group of restive northeastern states.
Ngambela Mukela Manyando has breathed fire on Zambia’s First Deputy Speaker, Catherine Namugala, calling her not only ignorant but also ‘very dull’ for stating that Barotseland does not exist.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with South Africa government-funded radio, Channel Africa, Barotseland’s Prime Minister, the Honourable Ngambela Mukela Manyando, has wondered how Namugala could state that a nation, so well known throughout the whole world and centuries-old as Barotseland, could suddenly be deemed non-existent.
The Ngambela further advised that Namugala should have researched thoroughly or asked them if she wanted to know more about Barotseland.
And Mukela Manyando has warned that Namugala’s parliamentary outbursts must be interpreted as a saddening provocation of the peaceful co-existence currently enjoyed in the unitary state of Zambia.
The Ngambela has sadly observed that Namugala’s statement also means that the Zambian state will no longer recognize His Majesty the Litunga’s jurisdiction over his Kingdom Barotseland that is now deemed non-existent.
The Ngambela has bemoaned that by implication, Barotseland’s King and the Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) no longer exist.
He wondered how His Majesty The Litunga will be a King over a non-existing Barotseland kingdom.
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.