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Why signing boarder treaty between Botswana and Namibia ?

Dear editor-in-Chief, kindly publish this letter in your esteemed newspaper

People have you wondered as to what was the purpose of this border treaty recently signed Between Botswana and Namibia governments in this day and age? Doesn’t it appear suspicious that boundaries which were established at the Berlin conference 1884-1885 that today they should again be a subject of border treaties.

Mr. Ben Siyambango Nzehengwa,Coordinator General – Movement for the survival of the river races in Zambesia

Many people feel that this border treaty is nothing but an attempt by the two former protectorates to advance their interests of Hegemony over a country formerly known as Zambesia. There was a country called the former Germany protectorate of South West Africa  declared on 15th November 1884, which is supposed to be Namibia today and whose colonial boundary was placed at 20th degree east of longitude as per the Berlin outcomes of 1884-1885.There was also a country formerly known as Bechuanaland protectorate which is supposed to be Botswana today declared on the 30th September 1885 and whose northern boundary was placed at the 22 degree south latitude also confirmed at the Berlin conference of 1884-1885.

Zambesia was a separate country over which the British declared a sphere of influence between 1885/1887 this country historically constituted three countries above the 22 degrees south latitude and that is to the west Sebitwane country or Makololo country and to the east former Matebeleland and Mashonaland ruled by King Lobengula. Following, the declaration of the sphere of influence on Zambesia between 1885/1887 a British order in council was issued on 30th June 1890 whose limits were the parts of south Africa situate north of Bechuanaland Protectorate, West of the South African Republic and Matebeleland, south of the river Zambesi and not within the jurisdiction of any civilized power. That British order in council was issued following a sphere of influence declared on a territory. The actual area covered by this sphere of influence was defined as the country north of the British protectorate of Bechuanaland and the Limpopo (or crocodile river), south of the Zambesi, east of longitude 20th degree east , and west of the Portuguese province of Sofala. This means that Zambesia had nothing to do with the two former protectorates.

The two former protectorates insatiable desire is to perpetuate the false notion that they were extended into Zambesian lands by the Anglo Germany treaty of July 1 1890, but of course this is a pathetic  lie as the terms of the agreement are crystal clear as to the intent of the agreement. Furthermore, the Anglo Germany treaty was just an arrangement by the English to allow Germany passage over their sphere of influence to access the Zambesi river from their Protectorate, but this terminated south of the Kwando/Chobe river.

Besides, this arrangement was abolished on 28/6/1919 by the treaty of Versailes in Paris following Germany’s defeat at the end of world War I on the understanding that Germany  would no longer be expected to make use of the benefits derived from that treaty because she lost all her colonies and spheres of influence. It is therefore unfortunate and regrettable that both Botswana and Namibia are trying very hard to keep an area which was abolished   according to the treaty of Versailes since it ceased to exist at the end of World War I. The two countries are spending millions and millions of dollars to justify their claims to parts of Zambesian lands. In the case of Namibia, it is common knowledge even to ordinary people on the street that the administration of eastern Caprivi Zipfel was already transferred to South Africa via proclamation number 147 of 1939 and there has never been any corresponding proclamation to date which transferred back the administration of the strip back to former South West Africa. Given the above, legally the strip is still under South African administration.  This situation needs to be addressed. Historically there is no common boundary between former Bechunaland Protectorate and former German protectorate of South West Africa above the 22 degree south Latitude and therefore this border treaty should be treated with caution.

The decisions taken by Great Britain on the territory formerly known as Zambesia have over with time lapsed and are no longer valid and its fair to regard them as having been discarded into the annals of history.

When the African Union supports schemes like this, they are not only a toothless bulldog but suffer from a disease called intellectual laziness and spiritual bankruptcy. It is amazing, that the African Union is manned by top educated people on the African continent but are unaware that there was a country called Sebitwane country or Makololo country in Southern Africa visited by the famous missionary and explorer Dr David Livingstone in 1849.The natives living along the area that will be affected by this border treaty would surely want to know its impacts.

The indigenous people of the area   have every right to know any matter that is likely to impact them positively or otherwise.

By Ben s. Siyambango Nzehengwa

Coordinator General –Movement for the survival of the river races in Zambesia.

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