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Kingdom of Barotseland
|Common languages||Lozi, English|
|252,386 km2 (97,447 sq mi)|
Barotseland (Lozi: Mubuso Bulozi) is an imaginary kingdom between Namibia, Angola, Botswana, Zimbabwe including half of eastern and northern provinces of Zambia and the whole of Democratic Republic of Congo's Katanga Province. It is the homeland of the Lozi people or Barotse,or Malozi, who are a unified group of over 46 individual formerly diverse tribes related through kinship, whose original branch are the Luyi (Maluyi), and also assimilated Southern Sotho tribe of South Africa known as the Makololo.
The Barotse speak Silozi, a language most closely related to Sesotho. Barotseland covers an area of 252,386 square kilometres, but is estimated to have been twice as large at certain points in its history.Once an empire, the Kingdom stretched into Namibia, Angola, Botswana, Zimbabwe including half of eastern and northern provinces of Zambia and the Democratic Republic of Congo's Katanga Province.
Under the British colonial administration, Barotseland was a Protectorate of the British Crown from the late 19th-century. The Litunga, the Lozi word for the king of Barotseland, had negotiated agreements, first with the British South African Company (BSAC), and then with the British government that ensured the kingdom maintained much of its traditional authority according to the Litunga. Barotseland was essentially a nation-state, a protectorate within the larger protectorate of Northern Rhodesia. In return for this protectorate status, the Litunga gave the BSAC mineral exploration rights in Barotseland.
In 1964, Barotseland became part of Zambia when that country achieved independence. However, some people claim that Zambia has violated the Barotseland Agreement 1964, and seek independence from Zambia. In 2012, a group of traditional Lozi leaders, calling itself the Barotseland National Council, called for independence; other tribal chieftains oppose secession, however.
This section needs additional citations for verification .(November 2016)
Its heartland is the Barotse Floodplain on the upper Zambezi River,also known as Bulozi or Lyondo, but it includes the surrounding higher ground of the plateau comprising all of what was the Western Province of Zambia. In pre-colonial times, Barotseland included some neighbouring parts of what are now the Northwestern, Central and Southern Province as well as Caprivi in northeastern Namibia and parts of southeastern Angola beyond the Cuando or Mashi River.
The origins of Barotseland are unclear, but are a prominent subject in Lozi mythology. It is believed that the Barotse state was founded by Queen Mbuywamwambwa, the Lozi matriarch, over 500 years ago.Its people were migrants from the Congo. Other ethnic groupings that constitute the current Barotse kingdom migrated from South Africa, Angola, Zimbabwe, Namibia and Congo. The Barotse (the Lozi) reached the Zambezi River in the 17th century and their kingdom grew until it comprised some 25 peoples from Southern Rhodesia to the Congo and from Angola to the Kafue River. At the time, Barotseland was already a monarchy, when Lealui and Limulunga were seasonal capitals of the Lozi kings.
A detailed investigation into the history of the Barotse was carried out in 1939 in connection with the Balovale Dispute, see below.
In 1845 Barotseland had been conquered by the Makalolo (Kololo) from Lesotho– which is why the Barotse language, Silozi, is a variant of Sesotho. The Makololo were in power when Livingstone visited Barotseland, but after thirty years the Luyi successfully overthrew the Kololo king.
Barotseland's status at the onset of the colonial era differed from the other regions which became Zambia. It was the first territory north of the Zambezi to sign a minerals concession and protectorate agreement with the British South Africa Company (BSAC) of Cecil Rhodes.
By 1880, the kingdom was stabilised and King Lewanika signed a treaty on 26 June 1889 to provide the kingdom international recognition as a State. After the discovery of diamonds, King Lewanika began trading with Europe. The first trade concession was signed on 27 June 1889 with Harry Ware, in return King Lewanika and his kingdom were to be protected. Ware transferred his concession to Cecil Rhodes of the British South Africa Company. Seeking the improvement of the military protection and with the intention to sign a treaty with the British Government, King Lewanika signed on 26 June 1890 the Lochner concession putting Barotseland under the protection of the British South Africa Company. At that time, there was European administration in Southern Rhodesia, in Nyasaland further East, and the beginnings of European administration in what was then called North-Eastern Rhodesia (centred on Fort Jameson, now Chipata) and also North-Western Rhodesia - basically Barotseland. Later, these two were administratively combined as simply "Northern Rhodesia", later divided up in five Provinces and Barotseland, which was treated slightly differently from the rest.
Later Lewanika protested to London and to Queen Victoria that the BSAC agents had misrepresented the terms of the concession,but his protests fell on deaf ears, and in 1899 the United Kingdom proclaimed a protectorate and governed it as part of Barotziland-North-Western Rhodesia.
In the 1930s, there was trouble between the Barotse and the Balovale and Balunda tribes who occupied the land to the north of the land occupied by the Barotse. The Barotse claimed that these were vassal tribes, while they claimed that they were not. Eventually, the Government set up a Commission to adjudicate, and the Barotse lost.
On 18 May 1964, the Litunga and Kenneth Kaunda, Prime Minister of Northern Rhodesia, signed the "Barotseland Agreement 1964"which established Barotseland's position within Zambia in place of the earlier agreement between Barotseland and the British Government. The agreement was based on a long history of close social, economic and political interactions, but granted significant continued autonomy to Barotseland. The Barotseland Agreement granted Barotse authorities local self-governance rights and rights to be consulted on specified matters, including over land, natural resources and local government. It also established the Litunga of Barotseland as "the principal local authority for the government and administration of Barotseland", that he would remain in control of the "Barotse Native Government", the "Barotse Native Authorities", the courts known as the "Barotse Native Courts", "matters relating to local government", "land", "forests", "fishing", "control of hunting", "game preservation", the "Barotse native treasury", the supply of beer and "local taxation". There was also to be no appeal from Barotseland's courts to the courts of Zambia.
Within a year of taking office as president of the newly independent Zambia on 24 October 1964, President Kenneth Kaunda began to introduce various acts that abrogated most of the powers allotted to Barotseland under the agreement.Notably, the Local Government Act of 1965 abolished the traditional institutions that had governed Barotseland and brought the kingdom under the administration of a uniform local government system. Then in 1969, the Zambian Parliament passed the Constitutional Amendment Act, annulling the Barotseland Agreement of 1964. Later that year the government changed Barotseland's name to Western Province and announced that all provinces would be treated "equally". The agreement's dissolution and the stubbornness of successive governments in ignoring repeated calls to restore it have fuelled the region's ongoing tension. One of the reasons why Kenneth Kaunda "revoked" the United Kingdom's Zambia Independence Act is reported to be that it called for the continuation of Barotseland.
Barotseland independentists continued to lobby to be treated as a separate state and was given substantial autonomy within the later states, Northern Rhodesia and independent Zambia. At the pre-Independence talks, the Barotse simply asked for a continuation of "Queen Victoria's protection".
A desire to secede was expressed from time to time, causing some friction with the government of Kenneth Kaunda, reflected in Kaunda changing the name from Barotseland Province to Western Province, and subsequently tearing up the 1964 Agreement. According to Barotse activists' views, the government in Lusaka also starved Barotseland of development – it has only one tarred road into the centre, from Lusaka to the provincial capital of Mongu, and lacks the kind of state infrastructure projects found in other provinces. Electricity supplies are erratic, relying on an aging connectionfrom the Kariba Dam hydroelectric plant. Consequently, secessionist views are still aired from time to time.
In 2012, a Barotseland National Council accepted Zambia's abrogation of the Barotseland Agreement 1964, alleging to terminate the treaty by which Barotseland initially joined Zambia.
In 2013, Barotseland became a member of the UNPO, the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization,joining Tibet and Taiwan at this international organisation dedicated to giving a voice to peoples who are currently unrepresented at the United Nations. Many modern States, including Estonia, Latvia, Armenia and East Timor, were former members of the UNPO.
Due to continuing human rights violations on the part of Zambia, in 2013 the Barotseland National Freedom Alliance also petitioned the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights in Banjul to examine Zambia's violations. This matter is currently being examined by the commission.
The national flag of Barotseland has a red field and a white stripe.
The traditional constitutional monarchy of Barotseland has Nilotic origins[ clarification needed ] with the kingdom originally divided into north and south. The north being ruled by a man, the King, called the Litunga meaning "keeper" or "guardian of the earth", and the south is ruled by a woman, Litunga la Mboela or Mulena Mukwai, "Queen of the south". Both are allegedly directly descended from the ancient Litunga Mulambwa who ruled at the turn of the nineteenth century and through his grandson, Litunga Lewanika who ruled from 1878–1916, with one break in 1884–1885, who restored the traditions of the Lozi political economy in the arena of the invasion by the Makololo, internal competition, external threats such as that posed by the Matabele and the spread of European colonialism.
The government of Barotseland is the Kuta, presided over by the Ngambela (Prime Minister). [ citation needed ]
Activists claim Barotseland is now theoretically independent from Zambia, on the basis of the Zambian High Court ruling (see below) that the 1964 Agreement was unilaterally abrogated [ citation needed ]by Zambia as being null and void (see above) – i.e., Zambia washed its hands of Barotseland, which therefore reverted to the situation that existed before Zambian Independence; i.e. that Barotseland remains a Protectorate of Great Britain. However, Britain does not want to get involved.
In the 1962 elections, the Barotse National Party was established to contest the two Barotseland districts, as part of an electoral alliance with the United Federal Party. In both districts, the BNP candidate heavily lost to the UNIP candidate.
Currently, there are three groups who claim to represent Barotseland. In January 2012, the president of Zambia, Michael Sata, met the representatives of the three groups at the Zambian State House in Lusaka. The groups are Linyungandambo, Barotse Freedom Movement (BFM), and the Movement for the Restoration of Barotseland.Experts have said that these three groups may become political parties should Barotseland gain independence. Fighting between the three groups has already surfaced. An article which appeared on the Zambian Watchdog, purported to be authored by a BFM representative, condemned the activities of the Linyungandambo group. The BFM accused the Linyungandambo of having set up Barotseland Government portal website without consultations, and included BFM members in the purported Barotseland Government without their consent, and in disregard of the effort being made by Sata to find a lasting solution. The author, Shuwanga Shuwanga, stated that Linyungandambo had refused to work with the BFM back in 2011.
The various activist groups championing the self-determination of Barotseland have since formed one umbrella organisation called the Barotse National Freedom Alliance (BNFA) which is headed by the former Ngambela of Barotseland (Prime Minister) Clement W. Sinyinda.
Zambia, officially the Republic of Zambia, is a landlocked country at the crossroads of Central, Southern and East Africa, although it is typically referred to as being in Southern Africa at its most central point. Its neighbours are the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the north, Tanzania to the northeast, Malawi to the east, Mozambique to the southeast, Zimbabwe and Botswana to the south, Namibia to the southwest, and Angola to the west. The capital city of Zambia is Lusaka, located in the south-central part of Zambia. The nation's population of around 19.5 million is concentrated mainly around Lusaka in the south and the Copperbelt Province to the north, the core economic hubs of the country.
The history of Zambia experienced many stages from colonization to independence from Britain on October 24, 1964. Northern Rhodesia became a British sphere of influence in the present-day region of Zambia in 1888, and was officially proclaimed a British protectorate in 1924. After many years of suggested mergers, Southern Rhodesia, Northern Rhodesia, and Nyasaland were merged into the British Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland.
Northern Rhodesia was a British protectorate in south central Africa, now the independent country of Zambia. It was formed in 1911 by amalgamating the two earlier protectorates of Barotziland-North-Western Rhodesia and North-Eastern Rhodesia. It was initially administered, as were the two earlier protectorates, by the British South Africa Company (BSAC), a chartered company, on behalf of the British Government. From 1924, it was administered by the British Government as a protectorate, under similar conditions to other British-administered protectorates, and the special provisions required when it was administered by BSAC were terminated.
The British South Africa Company was chartered in 1889 following the amalgamation of Cecil Rhodes' Central Search Association and the London-based Exploring Company Ltd, which had originally competed to capitalize on the expected mineral wealth of Mashonaland but united because of common economic interests and to secure British government backing. The company received a Royal Charter modelled on that of the British East India Company. Its first directors included The 2nd Duke of Abercorn, Rhodes himself, and the South African financier Alfred Beit. Rhodes hoped BSAC would promote colonisation and economic exploitation across much of south-central Africa, as part of the "Scramble for Africa". However, his main focus was south of the Zambezi, in Mashonaland and the coastal areas to its east, from which he believed the Portuguese could be removed by payment or force, and in the Transvaal, which he hoped would return to British control.
Rhodesia, known initially as Zambesia, is a historical region in southern Africa whose formal boundaries evolved between the 1890s and 1980. Demarcated and named by the British South Africa Company (BSAC), which governed it until the 1920s, it thereafter saw administration by various authorities. It was bisected by a natural border, the Zambezi. The territory to the north of the Zambezi was officially designated Northern Rhodesia by the company, and has been Zambia since 1964; that to the south, which the company dubbed Southern Rhodesia, became Zimbabwe in 1980. Northern and Southern Rhodesia were sometimes informally called "the Rhodesias".
Lozi people, or Barotse, are a southern African ethnic group who speak Lozi or Silozi, a Sotho–Tswana language. The Lozi people consist of more than 46 different ethnic groups and are primarily situated between Namibia, Angola, Botswana, Zimbabwe including half of eastern and northern province of Zambia inhabiting the region of Barotseland.
Mongu is the capital of Western Province in Zambia and was the capital of the formerly-named province and historic state of Barotseland. Its population is 179,585, and it is also the headquarters of Mongu District.
Lewanika (1842–1916) was the Lozi Litunga (King) of Barotseland from 1878 to 1916 . A detailed, although biased, description of King 'Lubossi' can be found in the Portuguese explorer Alexandre de Serpa Pinto's 1878–1879 travel narrative Como eu atravessei a África.
Liuwa Plain National Park is a 3,369-square-kilometre (1,301 sq mi) national park in Zambia's Western Province. "Liuwa" means "plain" in the local Liuwa language, a dialect of Lozi language, and the plains originally served as a hunting ground for Lubosi Lewanika, the Litunga of the Lozi people. The area was designated as a protected area by Lubosi Lewanika in the early 1880s, and as a national park in 1972, when Zambia's government took over management. The nonprofit conservation organization African Parks has managed Liuwa in partnership with the Department of National Parks and Wildlife and the Barotse Royal Establishment since 2003.
François Coillard was a French missionary who worked for the Paris Evangelical Missionary Society in southern Africa.
The Zambia Independence Act 1964 was an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom which granted independence to Zambia with effect from 24 October 1964. It also provided for the continuation of a right of appeal from Zambia to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council. It was introduced by Andrew Cavendish, 11th Duke of Devonshire Under-Secretary of State for Commonwealth Relations
The Litunga of Barotseland is the king of the Barotse people. The Litunga resides near the Zambezi River and the town of Mongu, at Lealui on the floodplain in the dry season, and on higher ground at Limulunga on the edge of the floodplain in the wet season. The Litunga moves between these locations in what is known as the Kuomboka ceremony.
The Luvale people, also spelled Lovale, Balovale, Lubale, as well as Lwena or Luena in Angola, are a Bantu ethnic group found in northwestern Zambia and southeastern Angola. They are closely related to the Lunda and Ndembu to the northeast, but they also share cultural similarities to the Kaonde to the east, and to the Chokwe and Luchazi, important groups of eastern Angola.
The Barotse Floodplain, also known as the Bulozi Plain, Lyondo or the Zambezi Floodplain, is one of Africa's great wetlands, on the Zambezi River in the Western Province of Zambia. It is a designated Ramsar site, regarded as being of high conservation value.
The Northern Rhodesia Police was the police force of the British-ruled protectorate of Northern Rhodesia.
Barotziland–North-Western Rhodesia was a British protectorate in south central Africa formed in 1899. It encompassed North-Western Rhodesia and Barotseland.
Timeline of Zambia
Clement Wainyae Sinyinda is a Zambian politician. He served as a member of the National Assembly for the Senanga Central constituency between 2006 and 2011. He also held the post of Ngambela of the Barotse Royal Establishment, a Barotseland self-determination movement.