THE Barotse Royal Establishment has asked first deputy Speaker of the National Assembly Catherine Namugala where she finds the courage to deny the existence of Barotseland.
Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) Ngambela (prime minister) Mukela Manyando notes that it is incorrect and a manifestation of ignorance on the part Namugala to call Barotseland a colonial name.
In her ruling on a point of order in the House recently, Namugala outlawed the use of the name Barotseland.
Namugala’s position has angered many people connected to Barotseland.
On behalf of the Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) and the people of Barotseland, Ngambela Manyando addressed journalists, on the matter, at the Litunga’s palace at Limulunga royal village on Wednesday.
The event was also attended by members of Linyungandambo and Barotse National Freedom Alliance.
“I would like to state that the ruling in Parliament by deputy Speaker, Honourable Namugala, MP, that there is no place called Barotseland in Zambia has shocked all level-headed people in Barotseland and Zambia,” Manyando said.
“The ruling was not only insulting and an affront to all the people that hail from Barotseland but also petrified and angered the people because it is insensitive and provocative. The BRE has received and continues to receive countless protest messages, comments and representations from all over Barotseland, Zambia and the diaspora representing all the ethnic groupings….”
He said Namugala’s “banning of the use of the name Barotseland in Parliament was incendiary.”
Manyando added that it was unfortunate that Namugala could make such a political blunder without due consideration: “of the impact and injury her statement would cause to the people of Barotseland who are passionately attached to their land, culture and identity.”
“The ban has even been extended to government official communication, verbal or written. I wish to inform Honourable Namugala and all those still in doubt that Barotseland or Bulozi, as we call it ourselves, has been in existence for hundreds of years and is much older than Zambia. It predates the arrival of the white men, the colonisers. It is therefore incorrect and a manifestation of ignorance on the part of Honourable Namugala to call Barotseland a colonial name,” Manyando said, adding that there was enough literature which provided irrefutable evidence about the existence of Barotseland. “We the people of Barotseland possess the inalienable rights to call our land by the name of our choice. Our ancestors called it Bulozi or Barotseland. We call it so today and we’ll continue to call it Barotseland in future. It is not surprising therefore that the treaty with Northern Rhodesia is called the Barotseland Agreement 1964.”
He further explained that the Barotseland Agreement of 1964 created Zambia – “a product of a union between Barotseland and Northern Rhodesia.”
“Where does Honourable Namugala find the courage to deny the existence of Barotseland? Could this not be only a result of hatred for the people of land?” he asked.
Manyando reiterated that the BRE had not accepted the change of the name from Barotseland to Western Province.
He noted that the change was undemocratic and suppressive.
“It was made unilaterally, without consultations with us, the owners of the name,” he said.
“We call upon Honourable Namugala to retract her inflammatory statement because it has the potential to cause civil unrest in Bulozi and Zambia as a whole. The statement was careless and made in bad faith.”
Meanwhile, Manyando stressed that the BRE would not allow the spiteful and provocative obliteration of Barotseland based on: “malicious discrimination and hatred against our people and God-given land.”
“I call upon all the people of Barotseland to maintain their usual calm while this and other matters are being addressed,” said Manyando.