Barotse activists split

SOME Barotse activists in Western Province have formed another freedom organisation called Congress for the Total Independence of Barotseland, but the other activists are against the organisation.

The Congress for the Total Independence of Barotseland chairman Chazele Mulasikwanda told the Daily Nation that the organisation was intended to spearhead the secession of Barotseland from Zambia.

He said a lot of organisations were formed in Barotseland in a bid to campaign for freedom but his group would ensure the process was speeded up, considering that the Barotse Agreement of 1964 issues were long overdue.

Mr Mulasikwanda said the new organisation was strategising to engage all relevant stakeholders, including the Barotse Royal Establishment, which was the main signatory of the BA of 1964. But another group called the Barotse Imilema argued that there was no need to form a new group because there existed an umbrella organisation, the Barotse National Freedom Alliance (BNFA) which was working on the issue.

BI group leader, Malamo Malamo, said the BNFA had made a  step ahead into the issues of secession and that the new group would confuse the people of Barotseland should they come up with another agenda which would not suit the will of the people.

He said that time would come when Barotseland would get the benefit of what they were advocating for and that the “arrogance” exhibited by some people into the matter would not make the activists relent.

Mr Malama said although the BA of 1964 appeared to be at a “stagnant” stage, it was advancing on a daily basis and appealed to the people of Barotseland to unite and maintain peace.

Mr Malamo said the people of Barotseland supported the BNFA because the assurance if the alliance had given and that on March 28, 2014, their lawyers challenged President Sata to sign a Permanent Court of Arbitration submission agreement on the issues raised by the BNFA and the people of Barotseland over the alleged abrogation of the Barotseland Agreement of 1964 and human rights violations in the region.  He accused the newly formed congress of trying to compromise the process which was about to be concluded.