News Editor, Barotseland Post
This September, His Majesty the Litunga, King of Barotseland, will ceremoniously travel to Livingstone on the Zambezi River, the first such royal travel by any Litunga since his father did it in April 1947 when he travelled on the incredible Zambezi to meet King George VI and Queen Elizabeth at the Zambezi Boat Club.
The Litunga will travel to Livingstone to grace the 5th Zambezi International Regatta scheduled to take place on the 14th of September.
For this royal tour of duty to Livingstone, the King and his royal entourage will travel the traditional way called Kupuwana, when the Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) will come with their royal boats and barges for a flotilla on 13th September 2019.
Kupuwana is a distinct water ceremony the King of Barotseland undertakes when on an official or ceremonial tour of duty different from the annual Kuomboka or Kufuluhela festivals.
Consequently, alternative but equally spectacular royal barges, such as the Indila, are used for the voyage in the place of the Nalikwanda and the Notila royal barges that are the main features during the Kuomboka water festival and its reverse voyage, Kufuluhela.
Induna Iñunde, Ms Irene Muyenga, who is the Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) minister in charge of foreign relations, has led a delegation of other BRE Senior Induna, as emissaries of the Litunga of Barotseland to this year’s Kulamba ceremony of the Chewa speaking people of Eastern Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique.
Kulamba is the annual ceremony at which all the Chewa people and their chiefs gather at Mkaika village in Katete district of Zambia, to pay homage to their paramount ruler, Kalonga Gawa Undi.
During the ceremony, the chiefs brief the Gawa Undi on the situation in their chiefdoms, highlighting major issues and also to present their gifts to him.
LUSAKA. Zambia’s Tourism and Arts Minister, Ronald Chitotela, has called for the need to integrate and connect Black-African Americans, who have chosen to track and reconnect with their ancestral roots, to the rest of Zambia.
Mr Chotela said this when a 12 - member delegation of the Homecoming Project led by their president Eric Sheppard of the United States of America and Induna Namamba of the Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) paid a courtesy call on him.
“Through this, the Americans behind the initiative will be able to appreciate what Zambia has to offer in terms of tourism and become tourism ambassadors for the country,” Mr Chitotela said.
He said his Ministry would support the project and ideas that come with it as it has the potential to promote Zambia as a tourist destination of choice for international travellers Worldwide.
The Minister said the Americans need to have a broader view of the country so that they can tell a detailed and sellable story when they go back home.
And Eric Sheppard said Diversity Restoration Solutions, the organization behind Homecoming Project, has established a strategic partnership between The Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge, a US Federal Government Agency, and Barotseland which needs to be turned into a tourism partnership.
The Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) has rejected the Constitutional Amendment Bill of 2019, indicating that some proposed articles are not consistent with the traditional system of Barotseland.
Addressing the press in Limulunga on Tuesday 6th August, 2019 afternoon, Ngambela Mukela Manyando, the Litunga’s Prime Minister, stated that the Kuta had observed with grave concern that some of the proposed articles would derogate the authority and stature of the Litunga of Barotseland and, therefore, he questioned the motive of passing such legislation whose effect was the destruction of traditions and customs of one section of the same country!
And Zambia’s Prime Television News has reported in their mid-morning news on Friday, 9th 2019, that the BRE feels that some articles if passed would have the potential to create anarchy in the region because others will have powers of declaring themselves chiefs.
Prime Television’s Lloyd Kapusa reported that in a meeting held on July 30th - 31st 2019 by the District Palace Kutas which convened in Limulunga, the Winter Capital of the Litunga (King) Lubosi Imwiko II, the BRE sat to analyze the constitutional Amendment Bill of 2019 and resolved not to support the National Dialogue Forum, NDF, resolutions.
“The BRE observed with grave concern that some of the proposals in the Constitutional Amendment Bill 2019 will if passed, derogate the authority and stature of the Litungaship - the very foundation of our tradition and identity.
“We, therefore, question the motive of passing such legislation, whose effect is the destruction of traditions and customs of one section of the same country!” Ngambela Mukela Manyando was quoted reading out the Kuta’s resolutions opposing the controversial NDF resolutions.
Through a program called The Home Coming Project, which helps African-Americans trace their original roots, some who reportedly traced their roots back to Barotseland are scheduled to arrive home today for a two-week-long pilgrimage to commemorate 400 years since the first slaves arrived in English America.
The team of ten African-Americans led by Eric Antony Sheppard, the President and Founder of The Diversity Restoration Solutions (DRS) Inc. (USA), arrived in Lusaka, Zambia on Tuesday 6th August en route to Barotseland, where they will be received by the King of Barotseland, Litunga Lubosi Imwiko II, the Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) and their brothers and sisters in Barotseland for two-week-long festivities that will be organized in many districts across the Kingdom.
The first documented Africans to arrive in the English-speaking colony of what would become the state of Virginia in America, arrived in August 1619 on the “White Lion,” a Dutch man-of-war ship carrying enslaved cargo from the West Coast of Africa, and this August 2019 will be exactly 400 years since.
And to commemorate this special event, many African-Americans, and some from the Caribbean, are travelling back to Africa to reconnect with their ancestral homeland, with many deciding to relocate there permanently!
The nine (9) Livingstone Barotseland activists who were arrested and jointly charged for ‘unlawful assembly’ and ‘seditious practices’ last year have been freed on nolle prosequi.
Col. Lubasi, Ndopu Sanjola, Pastor Elliot Mbulana, George Akufuna, Silumina, Kebby Sishekanu, Phelim Kaungu, Ms Mukubesa Mubita and Mrs Yubai Mutukwa were arrested on 10th May 2018 and left to languish in deplorable incarceration for a month before they could be granted bail or trial dates.
This was after the nine Barotse National Freedom Alliance (BNFA) Livingstone Chapter leaders held a peaceful press conference to reject the Government of the Republic of Zambia (GRZ) and Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE) imposed dialogue process presented at an earlier press conference by the GRZ/BRE emissary, Mutungulu Wanga, who had wanted the people of Barotseland to rubber-stamp the suspicious dialogue process with the Government of Zambia over the defunct Barotseland Agreement of 1964.
However, when the matter came up for hearing on Tuesday, 30th July 2019 at the Livingstone Magistrate court, Zambia’s Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), Shawa Siyunyi, said the state had decided to discontinue the cases against the nine accused on a nolle prosequi.