It is disheartening to read and see how the public media, with the Times of Zambia in the forefront, have continued their crusade of trashing the Lozi people as a result of their (Lozi) interest to see to it that the BA1964 is restored.
The opinions and articles being broadcasted in the electronic media as well as in the print media are becoming a source of worry. It has become obvious that the agenda of the public media is to promote public hatred against the Lozis. Anything that is against the BA1964, to the public media it’s a big story worth publishing.
The public media has continued to misinform the nation because they know that Lozis have neither a private television station that promotes the agenda of Barotseland nor access to the public media to express their opinions freely without harassment.
This form of presenting biased information using national resources regarding the BA1964 has now become common among non Lozis either from the political side on one hand and some personnel both in the print and electronic media (Times of Zambia, Zambia Daily Mail, MUVI Television, MOBI Television and ZNBC) who continue to fan the Barotseland Question by publishing opinions that continue to demean the validity and value of the BA1964 in the quest of maintain the failed status quo.
The cited media houses have continued to cause to publish either articles or discussion programmes that belittle the Lozi as a people. The objective of such an agenda is to create public hatred against the Lozis. In their continued attack, the authors are let scot free to portray that the BA1964 was a craft document that was greedily designed to serve the one and only interest of the Litunga at the disadvantage of Barotse nationals. If this was true, 19 Lozis would not have scarified their lives on 14th January 2011 and on 27th March 2012 the BNC would not have resolved to secede from Zambia just to serve the interest of a greed monarch.
There is an adage which states that “He that wears tight shoes is the one who feels the pain”. The issue of Barotseland Question can never be opinionated correctly by a non Lozi whose interest is to continue to exploit the BA1964 to the disadvantage of the Lozi people. This scenario has been cultured for 47 years and the Lozi people through their BNC representation have said enough is enough and made their stance known based on the abrogated BA1964 and their failed efforts with the previous Zambian governments.
Therefore, it was not surprising to read and see how the public media carried the resolutions of the Nkoya Royal Council. Lets us face the facts. The delegates to the BNC were more than 2000 delegates unlike the Nkoya’s 500. If Zambia is a democratic nation, then democracy demands that the majority rules. The public media has of late amused me with how they have been applying double standards in the interpretation of our traditional and cultural history.
The BNC delegates represented more than 35 ethnic groups in Barotseland while the NRC was mainly attended by ethnic groups that migrated into Barotseland when Barotseland was already established. Lets us not mislead the nation regarding this historical fact. Well written facts are all in the national institutions that deal with our traditional and cultural history. When the subjects of the Litunga rise against him and issue demeaning remarks, HE the President Mr. Micheal Chilufya Sata does not show kin interest in the matter as a Head of State.
When there was an issue between Paramount Chief Mpezeni of the Ngoni people and Chief Madzimawe, if I remember well, first as a Head of State, the President warned to deregister (degazette) Chief Madzimawe as a chief. As if this was not enough, Paramount Chief Mpezeni dragged Chief Madzimawe to State House before H.E the President Mr. Micheal Chilufya Sata.
This is public information as published by the public media on the material date. Why apply double standards when the Lozi factor comes into play?
It must be known that when the Zambia government abrogated the BA1964 in 1969, the Zambian Constitution no longer applied to Barotseland. Whatever happened in Barotseland (political representation and appointments) from 1969 to date was and is still against the will of the people of Barotseland. The BNC resolutions of 27th March 2012 demonstrate this fact period. An agreement is an agreement and once abrogated, it does not attract treason.
Dr. Kenneth Kaunda must be held responsible and charged for assenting to the laws that abrogated the BA1964. He must be cited to the ICC for having created conducive environment that led to the murder in cold blood of 19 innocent Lozis by Mr. Rupiah Banda’s government. The former president Mr. Rupiah Banda and all those cited in the Dr. Rodger Chongwe Commission report must be cited also to the ICC and be charged for genocide. The Ngambela of Barotseland and the BNC should ensure that these culprits are brought to book before the ICC.
It is unfortunate that certain reputable media houses, some of which are funded by tax payers which include Lozis, (whether by intention or by design) can either be used or choose by intention to propagate misleading and biased information on the issue of BA1964. The continued distortion of the historic development of Barotseland is not only misleading but an insult to the historians who did their reputable work on Barotseland.
We are not surprised given the derogative remarks that were issued by the Minister of Defense, Mr. Geoffrey Mwamba and the Minister of Home Affairs, Mr. Kennedy Sakeni on one hand and His Hon. the VP, Dr. Guy Scot in parliament.
The demeaning and negative articles that are being published by either Times of Zambia or indeed any media house are doing more damage than good to this whole process. We must know that the pen (media) can be used to create hate and violence on one hand and peace, unit and stability on the other hand. As experts or interested stakeholders that are predisposed to either private wealth or national resources (which are not shared equally in order to disadvantage other ethnic groups for political expedience) we should not hid behind these media organizations with hidden agendas of perpetuating ethnical goals, but we should be careful on how we use these resources for the betterment of everyone.
This culture of negating issues of BA1964 and its people must come to an end.
It must be understood that the BNC resolutions were not just a bunch of misguided, greedy and selfish Lozis (as they have been labeled day and night) who gathered in Limulunga on the holy grounds of the Church, but a general feeling and opinion of every genuine Lozi person hailing from Barotseland. If Zambia is to stand, you the mighty must respect the integrity, nobility and dignity of the Lozi people. You can use all the national resources to eradicate, eliminate or even wipe out all the peoples of Barotseland and their history, but you will never remove Barotseland from the heart of every true Lozi including some Nkoyas. One thing I like about history is that when you try to erase or change other people’s history, you are actually rebirthing the same history.
Lozis have been very genuine and very patient people concerning the BA1964. In the past 47 years, Lozis having been seeking dialogue with the previous Zambian regimes, but what have they been getting in return, threats, intimidation, arrests, imprisonment and even killings over a genuine agreement. The successful Zambian governments have under played this agreement, but the PF government has even worsened the situation.
Today, the PF government is trying to deny not even in public but in the house of laws that HE the President Mr. Micheal Chilufya Sata during the run up to the September 20th 2011 Tripartite Elections never promised the people of Western Province to restore the BA1964.
What do you take the people of Western Province for? Even when Dr. Kaunda was purported to have opened his mouth on the issue, he still failed to come out in the open to state the truth about the BA1964.
You may have the national resources to your side, but know this that the cries of the people from Barotseland have reached God’s ears. Remember that the BNC resolutions were made on the holy grounds of the church. Humbleness and quietness does not define docility or foolishness. Even the mighty have weaker points too so did Goliath and David saw it.
I want to concur with the learned lawyer Mr. Sangwa’s timely advice to the PF government that was given in the Zambia Daily Mail, Monday, 2nd April 2012 regarding the Barotseland Question; the need for a referendum In Barotseland. This is the only way to determine whether the drive for an Independent state of Barotseland or secession is a concept of the few misguided Lozi leaders or indeed of the people of Barotseland. We should not be swayed by the Nkoya factor, which is just a minority interest that is repugnant to this country’s historical and political development. Whichever side of the Barotseland question you are, we should always remember that in the hands of a chef, ‘a chicken will always remain a chicken even if it is dressed”