The Zambian government has periodically used the emotive subject of the defunct Barotseland Agreement of 1964 for political capital, especially in election season, and yet do nothing to resolve the impasse as soon as the government had achieved their immediate political goals.
It would, therefore, appear that the Edgar Lungu regime is, in this case, trying to lure the Litunga and the Barotse Royal Establishment into the so-called dialogue to merely use the King of Barotseland to exert some influence on Barotse Zambian parliamentarians hailing from the region to vote in favour of the controversial Constitution Amendment Bill No. 10 of 2019 that seeks to introduce unpopular legislation to help the ruling Patriotic Front sail through the up-coming 2021 presidential and general elections which are expected to be hotly contested.
The BNFA statement as posted by the BNFA Publicity Wing on BNFA.INFO is here below reproduced in full.
"The Barotse National Freedom Alliance (BNFA) cannot and will not take part in the Barotseland Agreement 1964 negotiations proposed by the Barotse Royal Establishment (BRE). There is nothing to negotiate about the Barotseland Agreement 1964 as insinuated by the BRE press statement of April 16, 2018. The negotiations were done and concluded before the co-signing of the Agreement. What should have followed was implementation, but the Zambian regime defaulted and legislated against its obligations.
Zambia was a product of two equal partners, Barotseland-North Western Rhodesia and North-Eastern Rhodesia, each of which had its unique governance system. North-Eastern Rhodesia, represented by Northern Rhodesia government systematically destroyed the governance system of Barotseland and superimposed its system over Barotseland using state oppression.
BRE was created by the Zambian regime to suppress the Barotseland governance system. Before 1969, there was no BRE. The Northern Rhodesia government co-signed the BA’64 with the Barotseland government, not BRE. The Barotse National Council (BNC) rightfully recognizes the Barotseland government in the implementation of its resolutions. BRE has completely no role in the post-2012 BNC Barotseland and is not a recognized institution in the Barotseland governance system. It represents nobody but the Litunga Edwin Lubosi Imwiko and his self-appointed stewards. BRE turned against the wishes and aspirations of the people of Barotseland as enshrined in the 2012 BNC resolutions. Today, BRE and the Zambian regime are partners in the continued oppression of Barotseland and are acting together in the deception over the restoration of the BA’64. They both have no mandate whatsoever to negotiate the now null and void BA’64.
As BNFA we are determined to re-institute the Barotseland government. In any case, the people of Barotseland have already decided to disengage from Zambia through the 2012 BNC resolutions. Accordingly, we call on the Barotse to desist from the BRE/GRZ machinations. All maLozi, starting from the individual level, Village Kuta, SilaloKuta to Regional Kuta should remain resolute and support the BNFA and the 2012 BNC resolutions. Anyone who does not support the 2012 BNC resolutions is an enemy of Barotseland. Anyone who will take part in the BRE/GRZ machinations is an enemy of Barotseland - it is akin to eating your vomit.
The greatest enemy of Barotseland independence is the Barotse. Kaunda called for division among us and we became divided. Lungu also called for division and BRE turned against its people - why can we not learn from our enemy? All the tribes of North-Eastern Rhodesia remain united to this day against the Barotseland state. In 1968, the entire North Eastern Rhodesians voted against the BA’64 in a national referendum. They remain united in stealing Barotse jobs and resources. BRE/GRZ has inflicted irreparable damage on Barotseland and our environment. Our people have been made jobless even in their state, they have been made poorer and illiterate with our schools filled by unqualified Bemba and Nyanja speaking teachers, our people are being killed by unqualified Bemba and Nyanja speaking doctors and nurses in our hospitals and clinics. Our forests and trees are being destroyed and fish stock depleted as a deliberate policy to leave Barotseland impoverished.
There were no pre-dialogue and dialogue discussions when the BA’64 was unliterary abrogated by the Zambian regime in 1969, despite protests from the Barotseland government. Subsequent calls for its restoration following the 2012 BNC meeting in the backdrop of the lies submitted by the Zambian regime to the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights and the withdrawal of BRE from the case is in an attempt to derail the progress made by the BNFA in actualizing Barotseland independence. Why is BRE the only side pleading for dialogue from a deceitful government which no longer has the legitimacy to preside over the affairs of Barotseland with BRE itself also having no legitimacy while the Barotse continue being denied their fundamental human rights to assembly, association, movement, speech and self-determination?
How ready can BRE be when they don’t even know that there is nothing to negotiate over the BA’64 when they cannot even assemble a batch of traitors to aid them in their continued deception with GRZ when they cannot even organize Ku-o-mboka traditional ceremony when Barotseland has been flooded by Zambia security agents when they are afraid of being arrested by the Zambian regime themselves when they have been holding nothing but clandestine meetings among themselves but afraid to face the people when they have been taken to the High Court and Constitutional Court for gross misconduct, violations of Barotseland governance, culture, traditions and values, and immediate removal of Litunga Edwin LubosiImwiko? It is time for BRE to step aside as demanded by the people. Restoration of the BA’64 is no longer an option. We, the people of Barotseland, have already said NO on March 27, 2012. The people of North Eastern Rhodesia said NO in 1968. The Zambia regime said NO in 1969 and at every municipal constitutional review of Zambia thereafter.
The BNFA cannot stand-by and watch the destruction of our state, jobs, people and resources by BRE/GRZ. The independence of Barotseland must be achieved as quickly as possible to stop this destruction as resolved in the 2012 BNC meeting. This remains the only way to restore our human dignity, cultural, political and economic rights. This is a fight for every daughter and son of Barotseland, no one else will do it for us.
The time has now come for us ALL to get involved." - BNFA.INFO