Secessionist Sentiments, A Highly Divisive Issue

Secessionist Sentiments, A Highly Divisive Issue


Secessionist Sentiments in Western Province

The continued agitation for secession by traditional leaders in Weste­rn Province is no doubt a thorny and complex issue which requires the government of the day to tread carefully in its efforts to resolve it. Like all other serious national issues facing us, we need to summon our wisdom in find­ing a lasting and peaceful solution to it. In this article, I wish to make a few observa­tions about the issue.

We Are One People!:

Although the majority of Zambian citi­zens to­day can identify themselves as belong­ing to one or two of our country’s seventy-three (73) tribes, we are all essentially one and the same people. In short, we are all members of the Zambian family. And recogni­tion of our oneness has, no doubt, been the linchpin of the enhanced and unmat­ched national unity which our coun­try has enjoyed since inde­pen­dence. I, therefore, do not suppor­t my traditional cousins in Western Province secede from the Zambian nation.

An Era of Integration:

Integration of sovereign states has been one of the leading aspirations of socio-economic policy over the last sixty or so years, so much so that we can appro­priately describe our era as an era of integ­ration. There are numerous motivations for such integration, inclu­ding the need to create larger financial and goods markets, and the need to assume greater bargaining power in interna­tional affairs. In general, societal members worldwide have become true beli­evers in the concepts of “strength in numbers” and “in unity, there is greater strength.” Secession in an era of integration is, therefore, counter­produc­tive at best!

What Is the Central Issue?:

believe the main issue which has continued to invoke secessionist sentiments can be found in Clauses 2 and 3 of Article 4 of the Barotseland Agreement of 1964, which I will cite here below:

Article 4: The Litunga and His Council: (2) The Litunga of Barotseland, acting after consultation with his Council as constituted for the time being under the customary law of Barotseland shall be the principal local authority for the government and administration of Barotseland. (3) The Litunga of Barotseland, acting after consultation with his Council, shall be authorized and empowered to make laws for Barotseland [with respect to issues cited in Agreement].

Unfortunately, decentralization of authority to provinces is not likely to mitigate the prevailing desire for secession because it will require leaders in the 10 provinces to be elected by residents. The secessionist, I believe, are mainly about having the Litunga and his inner circle to preside over the political and economic affairs of Western Province, perhaps with some semblance of democracy through titular structures of elected leaders.

So, our fellow citizens in Western Province need to decide whether or not they prefer to be governed by a monarchical regime without any viable mech­anism for peacefully replacing incompe­tent leaders. The secession which my traditional cousins are seeking is not feasible in the long run without first gauging the general feelings (about the secession issue) of the Mbunda, Mankoya and other tribes in the Western Province, and the Lozi people who have intermarried across provincial boundaries.

A Highly Divisive Issue:

Secessionist sentiments are a highly divisive issue; the longer they are sustained, therefore, the more they are likely to create an atmosphere of mistrust and hostility between the Lozi people and the other 72 Zambian tribes, with whom they have peacefully coexisted over the last 47 years.

Our beloved country has been a unitary and indivisible sovereign state since its inception in 1964. Each and every one of us, therefore, has a civic and moral obligation to guard against the temptation of dividing it on ethnic lines. We need to continue to exercise our civic and moral duty to be patriotic and loyal to our beloved country, and to foster national unity as well as live in harmony with other members of Zambian society.

Henry Kyambalesa



69 Responses to "Secessionist Sentiments, A Highly Divisive Issue"

  1. Mbwe!   March 28, 2012 at 2:41 pm


  2. Membrane   March 28, 2012 at 2:50 pm

    Just a correction to the writer of this article, when you say 72 tribes will face the Lozi as if the Lozi is one tribe. There are 26 tribes that make Lozi ethnic group, so it will mean 47 tribes remaining in Zambia!!!!. But I hope this does not happen!!!!

  3. GUN   March 28, 2012 at 3:00 pm

    @Tonga man,stick to the history you leant at Basic school and remain ignorant,i talk from what is in the archives at Lealui and limulunga,libonda and Nalolo.

  4. kapalakasha   March 28, 2012 at 3:13 pm

    Well articulated article, how i wish many more of us in our great coutry Zambia can reason in the manner my MAN Kyambalesa does…..offcourse its not right to trade ideas of national intrest on tribal ,personal ego&gender lines…..No one Can posses all the wisdom in this life….lets be level headed when it comes to matters of national intrest…emmotions & personal prefferences can be expressed within the boundaries of our HABITATS…Zambia is bigger than a few much pronounced Name & tribes….

  5. Zambian   March 28, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    Behave yourselfish selfs. Remember what we did to your friends from libyia. they were advzd agmst buying zamtel just like you are being advzd to Stop the divisions…l gues you know what happened with Lapgreen. .Kuvwamba! . If you continue with this behavior yo u will live HMCS with no option but to give your sandy vally to chokwez and luchaziz . Behav e.

  6. Simbilingani Wa Libongani   March 28, 2012 at 4:54 pm

    stupid analysis. Who told you that lozi is one tribe which leaving 72 other tribes just there you are lost in yo analysis

  7. sop   March 28, 2012 at 5:08 pm

    @Mbwe you are right especially Post Mmembe he is destroying the peace of our country which is very evil

  8. sawa2pin   March 28, 2012 at 5:27 pm

    @lion ,that’s good . Batata ba sata term yabo nga yapwa ,nipali chipimo junior. Muliko amano ena not ba up and down bafula ubupuba

  9. Kant Never   March 28, 2012 at 6:08 pm

    Nice and well articulated article.Keep it up.

  10. ziman   March 28, 2012 at 9:28 pm

    So ZWD has a hidden Agenda! Very excited site kwati nibakolwe balesekelela amasuku. I ve just finished watching the televised debate in Parliament; bravo His Honor G.Scott and also the MPs for good questions and being level headed in their debate. To also the citizens more especially the Southerners and Westerners lets debate this issues objectively lets try to be level headed. Also an appeal to MPs pliz go out and dialogue with yo pipo so that we have more info to share make informed decisions in the envetuality of a refrendum. The Lozis a fighting a loosing battle coz UN, AU and other bodies will not support the breakup of country coz of pushing tribal agenda. Intergration is whats being encouraged not disintergration!

  11. lunda/tonga by tribe   March 29, 2012 at 6:51 am

    North westernaz, westernaz n southern provinc hav been frends for a long tym nw and dnt call themsevz names like being tribal we are tired. Hence we shul unite to form 1 barotse of equal opotunities for all. Thre z no way a bemba cn b sayn tongaz wil neva rule loziz wil neva rule dats wre the problem z if we cnt rule u ts beta we rule our selvs its nt an act of selfishnes. Bt an act coz of the pain uv inlictd on us.

  12. Reignley Masambo   March 29, 2012 at 7:59 am

    What is Kaunda’s comment on this big issue? Atleast he is the living testimony to the agreement. Why did government spend all that money sending soldiers and security personnel to BL? They must be ashamed at the resources they wasted. That money should have helped a poor child to have access to health facilities.

  13. Tee Kays   March 29, 2012 at 11:09 am

    Lozis, So pompas nd noulty,These chaps shud be freed so we see wht they make of their barotse.THEY thnk they ar so special wel we ar jst tryng to prevent u frm hunger coz we love u so much otho we’l stil let you go coz u ar so ungreatful. start parking nd leave.

  14. Gaza   March 29, 2012 at 11:50 am

    Lozis you are just never even fought for independence.atleast tongas are only good at making babies.continue dreaming.if the president promised you to give you western province,the quastion is ,did you vote for him?in western promise,only one m.p was voted for p.f.stop making noise.mwalaponoka

  15. Gaza   March 29, 2012 at 11:55 am

    Lozi and tonga,get a life and one thing you should know that you will never us are not fighting with bembas but with the government .so please do not drag us into the muddy.we very busy working

  16. Amuna Onzuna   March 29, 2012 at 11:59 am

    While Swazis and Morocco are trying to dismantle the Monarch, Lozis are blindly trying to re-introduce it, wat a shame!. Nowadays, people are crying for democracy other than autocracy, I wonder what wisdom the Ngambela has which he didnt have when he was a GRZ Minister.One thing for sure Lozis should understand is that the UN/AU will never allow them to rule other tribes by force,the Nkoyas, Mbundas Luvales can no longer remain slaves of the so-called Litunga,its unacceptable just like the Chewas,Tumbukas,Nsengas, Chikundas can be slaves of the Ngonis who defeated them in those migratory wars of the 1800s. The Lozis are living in the past, I thought education is supposed to open our minds but it seems its opposite for the Lozis who despite being educated they still think full of themselves in a backward way.

  17. Nshangalilwa   March 29, 2012 at 12:31 pm

    Ba Lunda tonga tamwakwata mano muleishiba insambu should strive to know your rights. no one has ever inflicted pain on you its your dullness.Look we are all Zambians with same constitution,same colour,same towns and districts, same campaign plat form how can you allow a man, an unschooled Sata cheat you and you voted. why cant you just form a political party and campagin against him rather than complaining it will take you no where!There are a lot more educated pipo in western province than in any other province who can rule this country but they are afraid and they not real look at Saki he is lost honestly how can you suport a man like him so you should check yourselves before. Now you wont break away coz the Nkoyas are against you and they are very important the mbundas the kachokwe. imwe you should have manners!

  18. Lesa wabonse   March 29, 2012 at 12:54 pm

    Let me add my voice to this on going debate,The lozi guys are not thinking right nowander l refused to get married to one man from Kwa haye. you mean they cant think properly. they just want power independence, so if they break away from zambia what happens to those Lozis Who have established themselves in other provinces for example my mulamu Mr Mutukwa is married to my sister Angela and they are in Mwense as teachers and they have bought land there meaning they wont come back they have established themselves there and their children doesnt know that they are Lozi/ Tonga. now some one pliz tell me what happens and its not only this couple that l know there are a lot so awe mwandi tulebako fair.

  19. kolwe   November 8, 2012 at 4:33 pm

    when barotse becomes an indpendent sstate, it does not mean lozi people must leave zambia, no. it is up to individuals to choose where they want to go. there are lozi people who were born in the northern rhodesia side, they can be called zambians even when their decent is from barotseland. it is not possible that lozis will all leave zambia, no. no matter what happens, and even when the new state is formed, bebmabs will still have lozis to deal with in the remaining part of zambia.unfortunately, this is the truth.