Partisan Electioneering should take place after the Transition and not Now – Saleya Kwalombota

25 October 2014

I am prompted to express my views and understanding of political philosophy on declaration of independence theory and how the will of the people is cardinal, which wishes, the BRE as an institution frustrated six Months after receiving people’s mandate to implement the 2012 BNC resolutions. These views follow some published suggestions by a group calling itself Bulozi Naha yaluna whose mission statement is not very well known.

Declaring of independence and attaining it however, are quite different.

Sometimes, a state wishing to achieve independence from a dominating power will issue a declaration of independence; the earliest surviving example is Scotland's Declaration of Arbroath in 1320. Barotseland issued her own independence declaration on 27th March, 2012 at the Barotseland National Council, the highest policy making body and was mandated by the Litunga, King and ruler of Barotseland territory.

In Barotseland, democratic system existed long before it became part of the world's democracy vocabulary today. It is imperative for liberation groups to have common objective while holding on to different strategies. People should understand that this is not time for being partisan. Political parties will come into formation at the later stage, towards the end of transitional period to elect people mandated leaders through the democratic ballot process. The liberation groups’ leaders are not the ones to blame for misguided approach to 2012 BNC resolutions' implementation, but the council's failure to choose a transitional government right there and then. Therefore, liberation groups should maintain a flexible posture to ensure that negotiations of bilateral relations with countries that support us in our independence resolve mature successfully, although all liberation groups may play brinkmanship to their ability.

This “national peace culture” from the grassroots level to the national leadership should not be conspicuously absent during and after our independence process struggle. Consequently, the peace independence struggle process should be protected from the ongoing misunderstandings that resulted from the BRE's failure to implement the 2012 BNC resolutions. Clashes between activists groups is not healthy and more importantly it has the effect of not bringing the general populous into the governance mindset. This latter effect, of bringing the general population into the governance process implementation is the guarantor of any peaceful independence struggle process. Without “buy in” from the general population, implementation of 2012 BNC resolutions is extremely difficult.

Besides the willingness to work for a purpose, the other distinctive character of Barotse people is that of the willingness to talk peace and love and this should be reflected even in our publications. The people of Barotseland are the main actors, therefore, their wishes expressed through 2012 BNC independence declaration should be upheld by all without fear. It must be noted that this willingness to compromise also related to large measure of respect and wisdom, therefore, BNFA should support the already existing Barotseland civil transitional government and work together to achieve the intended freedom. All various liberation groups are appreciated in one way or the other, as every group has its true appreciation of their relative strengths and weaknesses.

In case Zambia withdraws from our territory today, what will happen? We do not want it to result in a mutually hurting military stalemate. From the perspective of the some liberation groups, the disintegration of unity, if any, among the groups should not lead to groups sponsor for weapons due to hatred against leaders who have made it. The transitional government capacity should be supported to grow fully in control, even through the Kuta structures, so that the traditional and modern structures co-exist and this creation of parallel governance structure will cause Zambia fail to govern the territory.

This type of strategic implementation is workable, people should understand it well that we are struggling against African dominance power not an European power.

The countervailing balance of power struggle by BNFA is understood well by the failure of the people behind its formation to work with the already existed liberation groups. The former NGAMBELA Hon.Clement Wainyai Sinyinda, whose zeal is appreciated by all, should not have rushed to form a liberation group but would have played a role of a guardian to the government in waiting, especially as Sope Munyoaluyi – Lord Chancellor. His forming of a liberation group, BNFA, has resulted in him utilizing the `carrot and stick approach’ to deal with the issue of Barotseland independence, contrary to the 2012 BNC resolutions, which demanded urgency of governance other than formation of a liberation group (BNFA).

The people of Barotseland demanded for political liberty and are not willing to make further retrogressive concessions. The people of Barotseland spoke and their voices reached the global community. The people of Barotseland are not interested in compromise and concessions with the government of Zambia, otherwise it will lure recalcitrant between the people and the BRE, who have already gravely disappointed the people of Barotseland by their failure to implement the 2012 BNC resolutions.

Tukongote Litunga Ni lyetu.

By Saleya Kwalombota

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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.