Media Editor, Barotseland Post
The Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen issued the country’s first apology to its indigenous communities. As a “country of justice”, Ms Tsai stated that Taiwan has to reflect on the past abuses and mistreatments of the aboriginal people and issue a formal apology. Mr Capen Nganaen, a representative of the Yami people, accepted the apology and urged for a clean- up of the nuclear waste deposited on his homeland Orchid Island. Ms Tsai promised to push through a law indicating the basic rights of indigenous peoples and introduced a commission that will deal with the injustices faced by the indigenous community.
Below is an article published by The New York Times:
President Tsai Ing-wen of Taiwan offered a formal apology on Monday [1 August 2016] to aboriginal peoples for centuries of “pain and mistreatment,” and she promised to take concrete steps to rectify a history of injustice.
In a ceremony at the presidential office in Taipei attended by aboriginal community leaders, she said that although Taiwan had made efforts to end discrimination against hundreds of thousands of indigenous people, a formal apology was necessary.
“Unless we deny that we are a country of justice, we must face up to this history,” Ms. Tsai said. “We must tell the truth. And then, most importantly, the government must genuinely reflect on this past.”
Taiwan has 540,000 residents who are members of aboriginal groups, or about 2 percent of the population of 23 million. The Council of Indigenous Peoples officially recognizes 16 groups, with three — the Amis, Atayal and Paiwan — making up 70 percent of the total indigenous population.
Taiwan’s earliest known residents are believed to have come to the island 6,000 years ago or earlier from Southeast Asia and are part of the Austronesian peoples who range from Madagascar to Polynesia. When Han settlers from mainland China began arriving in the 17th century, indigenous peoples, particularly those on Taiwan’s western plains, faced assimilation, loss of land and outright violence.
Today, indigenous groups face high levels of unemployment, low wages and less access to education and other services.
“Another group of people arrived on these shores, and in the course of history, took everything from the first inhabitants who, on the land they have known most intimately, became displaced, foreign, non-mainstream and marginalized,” Ms. Tsai said.
Capen Nganaen, 80, a representative of the Yami, said he was happy to receive the government’s apology.
“Taiwan has had many presidents during its history, but never before has one been willing to offer an apology to the indigenous peoples,” he said during the ceremony.
He spoke of how the Yami had unsuccessfully resisted the use of their homeland, Orchid Island, southeast of Taiwan, as a depository for nuclear waste from power plants on Taiwan. “This is the pain of the people of Orchid Island,” he said.
Mr. Capen said many Yami feared that an accident would render Orchid Island uninhabitable, and he called on Ms. Tsai to address how to remove the waste.
Ms. Tsai became the first female president of Taiwan after winning a landslide victory in January, and her Democratic Progressive Party took control of the legislature for the first time. She campaigned in part on social justice issues, including an investigation into assets acquired by the Kuomintang, the former governing party, during decades of autocratic rule. Last week, the legislature passed a law ordering the return of ill-gotten assets taken by political parties since 1945, the year the Kuomintang took control of Taiwan from Japan, which had ruled the island as a colony from 1895.
During her inauguration in May, Ms. Tsai said her government would take an “apologetic attitude” toward indigenous peoples.
On Monday [1 August 2016], Ms. Tsai announced that she would lead a commission to address the injustices faced by indigenous groups and said that she would push through a law outlining their basic rights. She also said the government would provide compensation to the Yami before a decision was made on where to store the nuclear waste deposited on Orchid Island for the past 30 years.
Barotseland Watchdog Reports
Barotseland Watchdog (BWD) this morning attended the Kuta briefing from the Indunas who went to see Edgar Lungu at State House. One of the senior Indunas disclosed to to BWD that "It's rubbish dialogue and fake promises".
The Induna who was recently installed has charged that BRE Limulunga kuta are rotten, anxious, and disloyal crooks. Commenting on the much said and promised Barotseland Agreement restoration of 1964 by President Lungu, the Induna said only a fool, Judas Escariot, stupid, enemy and myopic (person) can believe false and deceiving promises of Edgar Lungu.
"Mwanaka, luziyelehile hahulu. Nisali kukenela kwa mulonga, niboni kuli mulonga kanti kukopani likuba, bangana kibabanyinyani feela. We are in trouble. I regret being there; people will never see any difference. They are thirsty for money and Bulozi (Barotseland) cannot be given to such kind of people. Even if restoration can be granted today, you can't be ruled by such kind of people with low thinking capacity. I am not with them, they are not normal", Charged the Induna whose name we have withheld here.
He has further asked the people of Barotseland to reject planned restoration dialogue and foolish promises. He said only an under five child can believe President Lungu and his politics. He wondered how Lungu can promise restoration discussion after election when he earlier promised to restore the agreement before elections.
"How I wish people of Barotseland can resist and reject voting in Barotseland. We should show the world that Barotseland is a nation and (we) rejected elections here. It’s sad for you young ones. It’s sad for you because you are suffering in the hands of immoral selfish few Indunas," concluded the Induna.
LUSAKA (Saturday, July 9, 2016) - President Edgar Chagwa Lungu of Zambia today met representatives of the Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) to discuss the process towards the restoration of the defunct Barotseland Agreement of 1964.
During a consultative meeting at State House, President Lungu said the 1964 Barotseland Agreement must be considered in the light of the current constitution and circumstances that have prevailed over time. The BRE tendered an implementation plan for consideration by the government and expressed their gratitude at the President’s sincerity over the matter.
The two parties agreed that the negotiations on the Barotseland Agreement must take place in good faith away from politics so that the process is not marred by the political tensions of the current election campaigns.
AND the Zambian government has also promised to release the Chongwe Commission of Inquiry Report on the 2011 disturbances in Western Province.
“I do not want to make unrealistic pronouncements for political expedience taking advantage of the current on-going electioneering. I want this process to take its full course after next month’s elections,” the Head of State said.
The nine member BRE delegation was led by the acting Ngambela Induna Mukulwakashiko - Nyambe Mwenda while the President was accompanied by Justice Minister Dr. Ngosa Simbyakula, Home Affairs Minister Mr. Davis Mwila, Chiefs and Traditional Affairs Minister Dr. Joseph Katema, Local Government and Housing Minister Mr. Stephen Kampyongo and Western Province Minister Mr. Puniso Njeulu and several technocrats.
This was contained in a statement issued by Amos Chanda, Special Assistant to the President (Press & Public Relations)
Others on the BRE delegation were Induna Kalonga - Lubasi Nalishuwa, Induna Imandi - Mowa Zambwe, Induna Namuyamba - Dominic, Induna Kuso - Muyangwa Mungwaluku, Induna Yutanga - Nyambe Namushi and Induna Musiyata - Moya Matakala.
However, the timing of this consultative meeting is seen to be nothing more than mere electioneering by the Zambian president whose election fortunes in Barotseland have drastically diminished because of his failure to honour similar commitments made in the past not only by himself but also by his predecessor, Mr. Michael Chilufya Sata as president and founder of the ruling Patriotic Front (PF).
Under Lungu’s presidency, and also dating back from his time as Zambia's minister of home affairs, the Barotse have suffered more government reprisals with many arrested and imprisoned over matters related to the defunct Barotseland Agreement of 1964. This was after March 2012, when at a regularly constituted Barotse National Council (BNC) held under the auspices of the Zambian government and the Barotse Royal establishment (BRE), the people of Barotseland unanimously resolved to govern Barotseland as a sovereign state, separate from Zambia.
The 2012 BNC resolution was because the 1964 pre-independence treaty that brought Barotseland under Zambian government jurisdiction was irretrievably and unilaterally terminated by the latter in 1969.
Over the years, repeated appeals to restore and honour the Barotseland Agreement 1964, the treaty that did not only seek to unite the British protectorate of Barotseland and the Northern Rhodesian colony of Britain, under shared sovereignty, but also guaranteed internal political autonomy to Barotseland within the new republic of Zambia, were all rejected by successive Zambian governments.
Since the agreements' termination in 1969 by the Zambian government, the Barotse see no legal, economic, social, and political or any other reason why Barotseland should continue to exist under Zambia’s subjugation, and president Lungu’s latest remarks on the matter will not likely change the people’s determination for Barotseland’s self rule.
I wish to thank the management of The Barotseland Post, Barotseland Watchdog, Barotseland Broadcasting Network and the people who are the source of information, informing all of us in countries that have connections to Barotseland. We sympathize with you all.
I understand that most of you are working under difficult conditions, but you have not withered your courage to speak the truth that we crave for. I believe that what you are doing will soon bear fruits to be enjoyed by all of the citizens. We should move ahead with one spirit of Tukongote wa mwana Nongolo left by our fore-fathers.
This issue particularly was very scarce on the Medias, but now with technology it pushed out the issue to the no-reach zone for the diabolic enemy to curb its escalation. Another day will come to pass, when the country is completely independent when we shall be talking about our history and the struggle around fire. Heroes will be named and awarded for the exemplary work done in the struggle. There seem to be inactivity on the ground right now, but I am sure that the leaders are doing all they can to bring good results for all of us.
UPDATE ON THE ECONOMY OF BAROTSELAND HAS REVITALIZED MY HOPE!
The report given on the Barotseland Post about the investment pledges the Barotseland Transitional Government (BTG) has found, revitalized my hope and my belief in the independent Barotseland. I understand time has elapsed from the independence declaration was made, and also from the time the Transitional Government was announced, but what I see to be important is that, things have happened and that now we are waiting for realization of these promises. We have to remain supportive to the systems established that take Barotseland to total freedom.
DEMOCRATIC CONSTITUTIONAL MONARCHY THE BEST TYPE OF GOVERNMENT FOR BAROTSELAND!
The governance system chosen by the BTG is best for all citizens. TOTAL MONARCHY will not be good for Barotseland today, especially given the attitude of African leaders. It will be very disastrous! DEMOCRATIC CONSTITUTIONAL MONARCHY is the best of all. REPUBLICS have their own problems because every five years (or so) you present a blank cheque to politicians who then write the amounts they feel possible and impoverish the nation. We need a system that provides checks and balances. In a Democratic Constitutional Monarchy type of government, however, it is envisioned that the governors would check the excesses of the monarchy and vice versa.
Please, keep informing us about the happenings without fear and prejudice.
Tukongote wa mwana Nongolo.
Mafitelo Kasunso, NAMIBIA.
After eight months of several court appearances, the Five Barotse Youth Imilemas who were arrested for carrying a UNPO Flag have walked to freedom when the Kaoma Magistrate court found them with no case to answer.
The five Barotse youths were arrested by Zambia state Police in Mongu on Thursday October, 29 2015 and charged with seditious practices. They were arrested when they were peacefully moving about with the UNPO flag fundraising to enable six of their colleagues then on trial in another matter, to attend their court hearing at a Kaoma court many hundreds of miles away.
Sinonge Lutangu, Saviour Mombela, Siyunyi Mendai, Jeff Mwinga, Muyapekwa Kutoma, all members of the freedom youth group, Barotse Imilemas, have now charged that their victory in the Kaoma court means that a fresh struggle for Barotseland will now be launched.
In March 2012, and at a regularly constituted Barotse National Council (BNC) held under the auspices of the Zambian government and the Barotse Royal establishment (BRE), the people of Barotseland unanimously resolved to govern Barotseland as a sovereign state, separate from Zambia.
The 2012 BNC resolution was after the 1964 pre-independence treaty that brought Barotseland under Zambian government jurisdiction was irretrievably and unilaterally terminated by the latter in 1969. Repeated appeals to restore and honour the Barotseland Agreement 1964, the treaty that did not only seek to unite the British protectorate of Barotseland and the Northern Rhodesian colony of Britain, under shared sovereignty, but also guaranteed internal political autonomy to Barotseland within the new republic of Zambia were all rejected by successive Zambian governments.
However, the Zambian government has continued to arrest, torture, incarcerate and even kill the Barotse, using state agents such as the police and military, for peacefully calling for Barotseland independence or merely exercising and asserting their other human rights like peaceful assembly and free expression among others.
The Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO) is an international, nonviolent, and democratic membership organization. Its members are indigenous peoples, minorities, and unrecognized or occupied territories who have joined together to protect and promote their human and cultural rights, to preserve their environments, and to find nonviolent solutions to conflicts which affect them.
Barotseland, a member since November 2013, accordingly bears the UNPO flag at induction, and the carrying and public displaying of this flag is neither criminal nor seditious.
Video courtesy of MUVI TV
BREXIT could threaten the unity of the United Kingdom with calls for a second Scottish Independence Referendum and to unite Ireland.
Two years after Scotland voted in a referendum to remain in the United Kingdom, its political leader First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said a new independence vote is “definitely on the table” after Britain voted against the majority will expressed by Scots.
With Leave winning the EU referendum, but with Scotland voting overwhelming to Remain, Ms Sturgeon told the BBC: “Scotland has delivered a strong, unequivocal vote to remain in the EU, and I welcome that endorsement of our European status.
“And while the overall result remains to be declared, the vote here makes clear that the people of Scotland see their future as part of the European Union.
“Scotland has contributed significantly to the Remain vote across the UK.
“That reflects the positive campaign the SNP fought, which highlighted the gains and benefits of our EU membership, and people across Scotland have responded to that positive message.
“We await the final UK-wide result, but Scotland has spoken – and spoken decisively.”
And Northern Ireland, which is part of the United Kingdom, is now faced with the prospect of customs barriers for trade with EU-member the Republic of Ireland.
Irish republicans Sinn Fein called for a vote on Irish unity following the referendum.
Irish government spokesman said the result has “very significant implications” for Ireland.
The Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny is set to make a statement after a special meeting.
Sinn Fein says “British government has forfeited any mandate to represent economic or political interests of people in N Ireland” - The Scottish Sun.