“The continuous denial of the place of Barotseland in the making of Zambia as a nation is robbing her of its beautiful history”
Mongu diocese Bishop Evans Chinyemba, Oblate of Mary Immaculate (OMI), has demanded the release of people arrested in connection to the history of Barotseland and the creation of Zambia, Oblate Radio Liseli reports.
The bishop has demanded the release of all political prisoners arrested in the country and in ‘Western Province, connected to the history of Barotseland and the creation of Zambia as an independent nation while speaking during the Interdenominational Golden Jubilee thanksgiving service held in Mongu at the Our Lady of Lourdes Cathedral yesterday, the 19th of October 2014. Bishop Chinyemba said the continuous denial of the place of Barotseland in the making of Zambia as a nation is robbing her of its beautiful history.
Meanwhile, Bishop Chinyemba says jubilee celebrations point at peace, unity democracy, patriotism, and prosperity, and urged Zambians to be ambassadors of peace at individual, family and national levels.
He outlined that while people can talk of many development activities Zambia has gained since independence, she still faces challenges in the area of freedom of expression, in sectors such as education and health as well as where youth welfare is concerned.
And speaking at the same function, Mongu Central Constituency Member of Parliament (MP) Nathaniel Mubukwanu said it was through such gatherings that the nation thanks God for what he has done to the country and its people for the past 50 years.
On Friday this week, Zambia celebrates its 50 years of independence under the theme, “Commemorating God’s favor of Zambia’s 50 years of independence for continued peace, unity, democracy and prosperity.”
There are currently four known political prisoners, and one still undergoing trial - all in connection with the matter of Barotseland or the possession of articles or material documents relating to the Barotseland Agreement of 1964 which agreement spelt out the position of Barotseland within the new state of Zambia at independence from British colonialism in 1964, an agreement that the Lusaka administration unilaterally abrogated officially in 1969, as situation that has caused dissension from Barotse people over the years who have usually suffered arrests, torture and even death at the heavy-handed Zambian government.
Boris Muziba, Nayoto Mwenda, Sikwibele Wasilota, executive members of the Barotseland National Youth league were sentenced to 3 years imprisonment with hard labour for a charge of "Publication of False News with intent to alarm the nation" over a personal letter they allegedly wrote to Mr. Clement W. Sinyinda, former Ngambela of Barotseland related to the state of Barotseland. Mr. Mubita Waluka was jailed two years over possession of "seditious materials" under Zambian laws - the sae being articles or documents related to Barotseland. A Kaoma secondary school teacher, Jonathan Kakungu Mukenge, is still on trial for possessing the document to do with "The Barotseland Agreement 1964" and other related documents intended for his research purposes in the line of his duty.