Many young people fail to understand why there are negative and insensitive feelings from Barotseland over the death of Mr Sikota Wina. On the other hand, he is highly eulogiesed and mourned on the Zambian side. People will do well to recall the history of Northern Rhodesia and Barotseland. The former was a British colony while the latter was a British protectorate. Both countries wanted to be independent of British presence. The late Mr Sikota Wina, and nearly all the educated Lozis, fought for the independence of Northern Rhodesia instead of the independence of their country, Barotseland. The Litunga of Barotseland of the time wanted Barotseland to proceed to independence like Lesotho, Swaziland and Botswana. The late Sikota Wina and others vigorously opposed the Litunga and argued for Northern Rhodesia’s independence that would swallow Barotseland. The Litunga and a few wise Lozis were forced to accept the union with Northern Rhodesia via the so-called Barotseland Agreement 1964. Barotseland then became part of independent Zambia. Few years later, Zambia rubbished the agreement and incorporated Barotseland as its province. In later years it became clear to the Barotseland people that their country was in fact a Zambian colony. This realization brought feelings of hatred against Mr Sikota Wina and others who were perceived as the people who had betrayed their country of Barotseland. The late Mr Sikota Wina could have cleaned his name if he had come to Barotseland and sought forgiveness, especially during the time turbulent period he had fallen out with the Zambian system. Mr Sikota Wina’s and his brother, Arthur Wina’s friction with the Litunga Mwanawina was well-known and it is still well-known even today. The friction turned into a feud. The feud between the Winas and Mwanawina has cost Barotseland its independence. Barotseland is suffering today because some people wanted to fix Litunga Mwanawina but inadvertently ended up fixing and punishing the whole Barotseland and its people.
Zambia is uncharacteristically silent on the history of Northern Rhodesia and Barotseland. The little history that is allowed to filter through is largely distorted, falsified and doctored. It is not surprising therefore that most young people do not understand the animosity between the two states. Probably Mr Sikota Wina was sensing the approach of his death. Some three months ago he had famously said that the history of Northern Rhodesia and Barotseland needed to be re-written