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JOINT PRESS STATEMENT BY THE HONOUbRABLE GOVERNOR OF CAPRIVI REGION, LAWRENCE SAMPOFU, AGAINST SECESSIONISM

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JOINT PRESS STATEMENT BY THE HONOURABLE GOVERNOR OF CAPRIVI REGION, LAWRENCE SAMPOFU, AGAINST SECESSIONISM

10 June 2016

I welcome you all to this press conference. I particularly welcome the representatives of our Traditional Authorities from all the four Traditional Authorities in Zambezi region.

I also welcome our National Leaders, the Honorable Ministers, Deputy Ministers and Members of Parliament who travelled all the way from Windhoek to specifically attend this press conference.

Therefore, this is iindeed a unique and special press conference in that it is the first time in history of the region for our four Traditional Authorities together with the our elected Local, Regional and National Leaders to speak with our voice on issues that I am going to address in this Press Conference. In other words, the issues I am going to address have been agreed upon and endorsed by our Traditional leaders together with our elected representatives.

SECESSIONIST ACTIVITIES OF THE SO-CALLED CAPRIVI CONCERNED GROUP: It is common cause that the people of Namibia emerged from colonialism on 21 March 1990. This was preceded by the drafting and adoption of the Constitution of the Republic of Namibia by the Constituent Assembly, a body that was tasked to draft the Constitution of the Republic of Namibia.

It is also common cause that the Constituent Assembly was chaired by one of the distinguished sons of Namibia, His Excellency Dr. Hage Geingob, our current President of the Republic of Namibia.

Seven political parties were represented in the Constituent Assembly and their members unanimously adopted the Namibian Constitution, our supreme law of the land.

This is consistent with the internationally recognised principles of democracy, namely, that those who are democratically elected are given a specific mandate to speak on behalf of those who elected them. It goes without saying therefore, that an unelected Concerned Group can not purport to speak on behalf of a nation or region. For some time now, we have observed the secessionist activities of the so called Concerned Group whose mission is to support the secession of the Zambezi region from the rest of Namibia. During the Presidential and National Assembly Elections of 2014, the Group was pre-occupied with instigating the residents of the Zambezi region not to take part in the elections apparently because the Zambezi region is not part of Namibia.

Their activities were repeated during the Regional and Local Authoriies Elections. Fortunately, they dismally failed to incite the residents of the Zambezi Region in both occasions. Their unpatriotic, divisive and secessionist activities were roundly rejected by the residents of the Zambezi Region. It is common cause that residents of the Zambezi region, just like other Namibian citizens went to the poll and freely elected their representatives.

Allow me therefore, on behalf of my colleagues to take this opportunity to express our appreciation and gratitude to our Traditional Authorities who mobilised their subjects to ignore the activities of the Group and vote for representatives of their choice, which they did in large numbers.

We have recently observed the activities of this Group through social media hailing insults at some of our National Leaders, as well as our Regional Leaders in furtherance of their secessionist activities. This kind of behavior is condemned in strongest possible terms and it is rejected with the contempt it deserves. We call upon responsible authorities to apply the letter and spirit of the laws of our Republic to deal with this Group which is hell bent to distabilize peace and stability that we enjoy today. We call upon all law abiding citizens of our region to report secessionist activities of this Group so that the law can take its cause. We are also aware that this so-called Caprivi Concerned Group is nothing but a front of the United Democratic Party led by Mishake Muyongo, an architect of secession.

As already pointed out, the Namibian Constitution which defines the international boundaries of Namibia under article 1(4), was unanimously adopted by all seven political parties represented in the Constituent Assembly, a body that was tasked to draft the Namibian Constitution. Unlike in most other independent African countries where independence constitutions were drafted mainly by the departing colonial powers, the Namibian Constitution was authored by Namibians themselves. Namibians from the Zambezi region took part in the constitutional development of Namibia through their political parties.

Indeed, as the 1989 Constituent Assembly election results show, Namibians from the Zambezi region were involved in not less than five (5) of seven (7) political parties which wrote and adopted the Namibian Constitution. These political parties are: the SWAPO party of Namibia, the DTA of Namibia, the United Democratic front of Namibia(UDF), the National Patriotic Front of Namibia (NPF), and the Federal Convention of Namibia (FCN). Therefore, no one from this region can claim that he or she was excluded from the constitutional developments of Namibia.

We wish to point out that three (3) colonial powers were involved in the delimitation of the international boundaries of Namibia to which Zambezi region is an intergral part, namely, Germany, Great Britain, and Portugal.

There are two main legal instruments which define the international boundaries of Namibia. These are:

a) “Declaration between Portugal and Germany, respecting the Delimitation of the possessions of the two Countries, and their respective spheres of influence in South Africa”, signed in Lisbon on December 30, 1886; and

b) “Agreement between Great Britain and Germany, respecting Zanzibar, Helogoland and the Spheres of Influence of the two countries in Africa”, commonly known as the Anglo-German Agreement of 1st July 1890.

Article 1 of the Declaration between Portugal and Germany of 1886 defines the northern boundaries of Namibia as follows:

“The boundary-line between the Portuguese and German possessions in South West Africa shall follow the course of the River Kunene from its mouth to the cataracts which are formed by that river to the south of Humbe when crossing the range of the Canna Hills. From this point the line will run along that parallel as far as the River Kubango, (Kavango) and thence it will continue along the course of the same river as far as Andara which place is to remain within the sphere of German interests. From this place (i.e. Andara) the boundary-line will continue in a straight direction eastwards as far as Catina (i.e. Katima Mulilo rapids), on the Zambesi (Zambezi)”.

Following the demarcation of the northern boundary of Namibia during the 1940’s, the last beacon is still visible near the Katima Sesheke Bridge at Wenela area. It is clear from the provisions of the 1886 Declaration that the area known as German South West Africa INCLUDED the Zambezi region.

The Anglo-German Agreement of 1st July 1890 completed the description of the land mass of German South West Africa known today as Namibia.

Again, it must be noted that the name South West Africa, which include Zambezi region was specifically mentioned by name in the Anglo-German Agreement of 1st July 1890 referred to above.

The description of the boundary started at Orange River. The material clause is Article III(2) which, inter alia reads as follows:

In Southwest Africa the sphere in which the exercise of influence is reserved to German is bounded: To the east by the line commencing at the above-named point, and following the 20th degree of east longitude to the point of its intersection by the 22nd parallel of south latitude; it runs eastward along that parallel to the point of its intersection by the 21st degree of east longitude; thence it follows that degree northward to the point of its intersection by the 18th parallel of south latitude; it runs eastward along that parallel till it reaches the river Chobe; and descends the centre of the main channel of that river to its junction with the Zambesi, where it terminates. It is understood that under this arrangement Germany shall have free access from her Protectorate to the Zambesi by a strip of territory (the Caprivi Strip) which shall at no point be less than 20 English miles in width. (emphasis added).

It is crystal clear from the provisions of Article III(2) of the Anglo-German Agreement that the description of South West Africa INCLUDED Zambezi region.

German official maps, South African official maps and most importantly the United Nations maps ALL show that Zambezi region is an intergral part of Namibia.

In 1966, the United Nations by General Assembly Resolution 2145 (XX1), 27 October 1966 (Official Records of the General Assembly, Twenty-first Session, Supplement No. 16, document A/6316) terminated South Africa’s mandate over South West Africa.

In 1967, theUnited Nations denounced South African rule as illegal and assumed de jure government of Namibia through the newly established UN Council for Namibia. (General Assembly Resolution 2248S-V, 19 May 1967, Official Records of the General Assembly, Fifth Special Session, Supplement No. 1, document A6657). Although there was little the UN Council could do to as a practical matter to assert its authority over Namibia, it did engage in a fairly extensive mapmaking programme.

In 1977, the United Nations published Map No. 2947 of Namibia, pursuant to a Resolution of the UN General Assembly, requesting “the Secretary-General urgently to undertake, in consultation with the UN Council for Namibia, the preparation of a comprehensive United Nations map of Namibia reflecting therein the territorial intergrity of the territory of Namibia” (General Assembly Resolution A/31/150, 20 December 1976, Official Records of the General Assembly, Thrity-first session, Supplement No. 39, document A/31/39). This map, at a scale of 1:4,000,000, was the first map published by the United Nations. (Namibia 1:4,000,000 United Nations, October 1977 Map No. 2947). Another map of the same scale was published in 1984, (Namibia 1:4,000,000 United Nations,1984, UN Map No. 3228 Rev. 1).

Then in 1985, a large format map was published pursuant to Resolution 35/227H of the UN General Assembly of 6 March 1981 (Official Records of the General Assembly, Thrity-fifth Session, Supplement No. 48 document A/35/48). The UN announcement of its publication reveals how carefully the UN cartographers constructed this detailed map. For example, it stated that:

“Over 450 seperate topographic maps, bathymetric charts, road maps and thematic material were examined and used. The final product was combined with a mosaic of satellite imagery prepared by the Remote Sensing Centre of the Food and Agriculture Organisation”.

The territory of Namibia is shown by hypsometric tinting that clearly covers the Zambezi Region. The legend states that “this map represents an official United Nations map of Namibia and supersedes any other map of Namibia or South West Africa hitherto published by South Africa”. It was circulated in an edition of 1,000 copies and was given maximum publicity. The map is at a scale of 1:1,000,000 (Namibia 1:1,000,000 United nations 1985, UN Map No. 3158).

It need hardly be said that the 1886 Declaration between Portugal and Germany, and the Anglo-German treaty of 1890 were major episodes in “the Scramble for Africa” through which some colonial boundaries in Africa were delimited by European Powers in the nineteenth century. It is also common knowlegde that these colonial boundaries divided communities at a large scale. Thus the delimitation of the boundaries of Namibia by European powers was not unique to this part of Africa.

It is an established principle of international law, generally known as uti possidetis, that where a territory was under the control of such a colonial power, the territorial sovereign limits of the successor State is limited to the territory previously under the control of such colonial Power. Namibia, therefore, inherited the territory under the effective occupation and control of the colonial powers. i.e. German and thereafter South Africa.

The inherited colonial territory is today embodied in Article 1 (4) of the Namibian Constitution which Mr. Muyongo ably assisted to draft. Article 1 (4) states as follows:

“The national territory of Namibia shall consist of the whole territory recognised by the international community through the organs of the United nations as Namibia, including the enclave, harbor, and port of Walvis Bay, as well as the off-shore islands of Namibia, and its southern boundary shall extend to the middle of the Orange River”.

It is clear, therefore, that the territory recognised by the internattional community through the organs of the United Nations as Namibia includes Zambezi region as evidenced by the maps published by the United Nations.

The legal position regarding the status of Zambezi region is, therefore, very clear. The region is and has always been regarded by the Namibian people, colonial authorities, and the international community as an intergral part of Namibia. Mr Muyongo himself confirmed this position when he proposed on 4 December 1989 in the Constituent Assembly during the drafting of the Namibian Constitution that Namibia should become a unitary state.

Indeed, what Mr Mishake Muyongo proposed on 4 december 1989 during the drafting of the Namibian Constitution was accepted by the Constituent Assembly. This is what he proposed: ‘Mr Chairman, Namibia will be a unitary, sovereign and democratic state. What do we understand by a unitary state?

A UNITARY NAMIBIA IS A STATE THAT ABIDES BY THE PRINCIPLES OF TERRITORIAL INTEGRITY AND REJECTION OF SECESSION (NAMIBIA CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY DEBATES, 21 NOVEMBER – 31 JANUARY 1990).

Mr Muyongo’s constitutional proposals are today contained in Article 1 (1) of the namibian Constitution and reads as follows: “The republic of Namibia is hereby established as a sovereign, secular, democratic and unitary State founded upon the principles of democracy, rule of law and justice for all.”

This Article was preferably refered to as Muyongo clause. Today the same Muyongo is shooting at the very constitutional provision which makes Namibia a unitary State. A provision which he helped to draft.

We have also recently witnessed what appears to be a one person mebership to the so-called Movement for the Survival of the River Races in Zambesia.This individual is promoting scattered papers of explorers, including maps which were drawn before the international boudaries of Namibia. It is claimed that the so called people of Zambesia are seperate from Namibia and constitutes a seperate country.

This claim is simply dismissed with the contempt it deserves. In any event, we are aware that while patriotic Namibians were fighting to liberate Namibia, the same individual was a Zambian national who was fully employed and drawing a good salary. The same individual came back to Namibia before independence, and again drawing a good salary from the apartheid colonial regime. We therefore call upon patriotic Namibians from Zambezi region to shun this individual. Given his past record, he is simply not qualified to speak about freedom which he failed to fight for during the colonial period.

It is a fact that during the struggle for freedom and national independence, many Namibians who were born from other parts of Namibia died in this Region fighting for the independence of Namibia. Most prominent among them are Tobias Hainyeko who was killed at Namwi Island, plus minus 6 kilometers east of where we are and Hanganee Katjipuka. Equally a countless number of Namibians who were born from Zambezi Region died in other Regions of Namibia. This is because we believed that we were fighting for one country and one cause.

We believed that we were all Namibians. This is what Brendan Simbwaye, Greenwell Matongo, Benjamin Bebi, Richard Kapelwa Kabajani, David Chatambula Masida, Judea Lyaboloma Tubukwasa and Maxwell Kulibabika all fought for Namibia. We should never betray them. Victims of 1960s Massacres at singalamwe and Shatuhu which occured during the struggle to liberate Namibia died in the name of Namibia, we must NOT betray them.

Source: New Era Newspaper, Friday, 17 June 2016, p. 39

IMMINENT ATTACK BY NAMIBIAN SECURITY FORCES IN CAPRIVI STRIP

Caprivi Concerned Group

IMMINENT ATTACK BY NAMIBIAN SECURITY FORCES IN CAPRIVI STRIP

We are reliably informed that Namibia’s Ministry of Defence have their national security forces sensitised, and their arms or ammunitions ready, for an unknown operation in Caprivi Strip.

Last week, ammunitions in Mpacha Military base were cleaned in preparation for an unknown operation in the Strip, and yesterday on 15 June 2016, a company of (about 400) NDF members, and some special Reserve Forces, were sent to the strip for the same unknown operation.

It is our understanding that when security forces are sent out, fully armed and sensitised, they are going there to attack or defend. We therefore call upon the Commander in Chief of the Namibian Defence Force, Dr. Hage Geingob, to tell the nation what the military operation is all about, and / or what necessitates it.

We further call on human rights organisations and all concerned parties to keep their eyes on Caprivi Strip, and the UN Security Council to also keep a closer eye on the activities of these Namibian forces which already have a very bad record of serious human rights violation in the concerned territory.

We also call upon all Caprivians to be vigilant, especially former Caprivi political prisoners and Dukwi returnees, not to go to the forest alone or go anywhere at night. We all know that this is what happened in 1998, more soldiers were sent to the Strip and harassed people in villages, which subsequently led to the exodus to Botswana.

Event Linyando (Former NDF soldier)
Secretary for Information and Publicity
Caprivi Concerned Group

NAMIBIA WISHES TO APPEAL AGAINST RELEASE OF FORMER CAPRIVI POLITICAL PRISONERS

Caprivi Concerned Group

 

 

 

 

 

NAMIBIA WISHES TO APPEAL AGAINST RELEASE OF FORMER CAPRIVI POLITICAL PRISONERS

 
28 May 2016

 
Caprivi Concerned Group (CCG) is disturbed by the intention of Government of Namibia to pursue an appeal against some forty-two (42) former Caprivi treason prisoners who were released in 2013 and 2015.

 
These men suffered a lot already in the hands of Namibia during their 13 to 16 years of unlawful detention. We view this appeal as nothing but political persecution and an attempt to frustrate or avoid civil claims of unlawful detention, and should be condemned by all peace loving people.

 
Detective Inspector Evans Simasiku, who deliberately bumped a member of CCG on Thursday 26 May 2016 at Kongola with a car, is going around telling the Caprivi treason ex-prisoners that “the state is not satisfied” with how they were released so they should be aware that anytime they will be needed in court because they are expected to oppose the application for leave to appeal on the date to be decided by court.

 
He is also serving them with the copy of the Notice for the Application of Leave to Appeal signed by the Prosecutor General, Lourens Campher, and dated 17 May 2016. The name of every recipient of the copy is noted and is required to sign apparently to show that he received a copy. According to Simasiku, those listed in this appeal should apply for legal aid even through the clerk at the nearest magistrate’s court.

 
CCG understands and believe that all who were discharged or acquitted in the main Caprivi High treason trial are since, and before, then innocent; however, having received the notice, they are expected to oppose or challenge the application, henceforth, we advise all those whose release is to be appealed against by the state to apply for legal aid the soonest. We ask their family members and all peace loving people or organisations to support them all the way.

 
They are as follows:

1. Calvin Malumo
2. Joseph Kamwi
3. Herbert Mutahane
4. John Masake
5. Chist Mushe
6. Kisko Sakusheka
7. Tobias Kananga
8. Ferederick Lutuhezi
9. Fred Ziezo
10. O’brien Mwananyambe
11. Joseph Mufuhi
12. Ernest Lifasi
13. Joseph Kabuyana
14. Richard Mungulike
15. Genes Kabotana
16. Stephen Mashando
17. Vasco Lyonga
18. Phelem Mutuwangele
19. Boswell Muyumbano
20. Ernest Samunzala
21. Wilsom Mutumuswana
22. Linus Luseso
23. Thaddeus Mundube
24. Gilbert Poshowe
25. Victor Lunyandile
26. Simon Mubita
27. Charles Samboma
28. Ignatius Tubushalila
29. Tiiso Manyando
30. John Samati
31.  Francis Pangala
32. Sylvester Ngalaule
33. Austen Ziezo
34. Andreas Mulupa
35. Roster Lukato
36. Davis Mazyu
37. Britan Lielezo
38. Brendan Luyanda
39. Frans Muhupulo
40. Gabriel Mwilima
41. Oscar Puteho
42. Richwell Manyemo

We do not anticipate that they will be re-arrested, but it should be noted that when the state appeals against an acquittal, literally, it wishes them to be re-arrested and convicted. For obvious reasons, political and natural hatred against Caprivians, the Namibian state wishes to get them behind bars again.

 
We therefore call upon the nation, nations, and other organizations to condemn this continued political persecution against Caprivians by the Namibian government.

 
Edwin Samati
Secretary General
Caprivi Concerned Group

Press Statement CDE. KANGONGO IS STILL MISSING

Caprivi Concerned Group

10 May 2016

Press Statement

CDE. KANGONGO IS STILL MISSING

We wish to express our sencere gratitude on the report by the Namibian police suggesting that our Deputy Chairperson, Cde. Retief Kangongo crossed the Muhembo Border post to Botswana probably for his safety. We appreciate their investigation.

However, as long as his whereabouts, with regard to where exactly he is, remains unknown or uncertain, it remains that he is still missing. We do not regret nor shall we apologise for saying that the Chief of Nampol, Sebastian Ndeitunga and others should be held responsible for whatever might have happened to Kangongo. This is so because of the threats from Ndeitunga towards leaders of Caprivi Concerned Group (CCG) since 2012, particularly the latest threat he issued the day before or on which Kangongo disappeared.

Let it be established as to why he fled to Botswana leaving his family and properties behind, but we still believe that the Police Chief’s threats are the principal cause. As much as such malicious threats were issued by Ndeitunga in his capacity as the Inspector General of Nampol, and are upheld by him, his force or the higher authority, we shall uphold our reasonable belief that he and others should be held responsible if not accountable for whatever happened to Cde. Kangongo.

We urge the Namibian police and journalists not to treat findings suggesting that he crossed to Botswana as if it means he was found. The fact remains that he is still missing since we and his family do not know where exactly he is and there is no communication since he disappeared. However, we will ensure our own investigation by privately engaging the Botswana government to establish his whereabouts, his safety and security in that country if truly he crossed.

Regarding an accusation of stealing a cellphone, we are informed that police established that he was falsely accused, hence he was neither charged nor punished. Claiming that he fled because of his alleged involvement in the cellphone story is pure fallacy. He actually owned two cellphones, and he has no record of theft from childhood.

Finally, we suspect that there might be other people who may have recently fled to Botswana for their safety as a result of these threats by Police Chief. However, we are still saying, Nampol should be held responsible for whatever might have happened to Kangongo, and human rights organizations should be on alert and keep their eyes on Caprivi Strip.

Thank you.

Edwin Samati

Secretary General

Caprivi Concerned Group

Cell no: +264814960827

www.capriviconcernedgroup.com

Press Release: CCG DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON MYSTERIOUSLY MISSING

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Press Release:

CCG DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON MYSTERIOUSLY MISSING

Monday, 02 May 2016

We wish to inform the nation and all human rights organizations that our Deputy Chairperson, Mr. Retief Kangongo is missing since the morning of Saturday 30 April 2016 following the report by New Era Newspaper of the preceding day, Friday 29 April 2016, in which leaders of Caprivi Concerned Group (CCG) were maliciously threatened by the Inspector General of the Namibian police.

In the newspaper report, the Inspector General, Sabastian Ndeitunga, was reported as saying “we have been working hard to make sure that if they continue with the idea of Caprivi secession, to dismember the Republic of Namibia, they will face the same fate like those ones who were in court or are now behind bars.”

He continued, according to the report, saying “they (CCG leaders) can go to sangomas a million times, we don’t care with sangomas… We don’t believe in sangomas, it’s a waste of time, our bullets will never distinguish between a secessionist and a sangoma. They will face the same fate.”

It is well documented that many suspected “secessionists” disappeared without trace between 1998 and 2004 up to now. Last year in the same newspaper in May, the same Inspector admitted that “some of the suspects in the protracted Caprivi high treason case endured the worst forms of torture.” In 2014, the National Coordinator of CCG, Mr. Aldrin Mahulilo, was taken by Namibian police officers from Katima Mulilo town centre to the bush by Choto informal settlement where he was forcefully undressed, pepper sprayed on face and left there.

The last time some of us telephonically spoke with Cde. Kangongo was Friday evening when he was in Rundu. He informed us that there is a suspicious car following him to every place he goes. He promised to inform us if anything will happen to him if possible, but we have failed to communicate with him since then, and his family members are also unaware of his whereabouts. If anyone knows his where abouts or have a clue of what actually happened to him, please inform us.

The threats by Ndeitunga, and the unfortunate missing of our comrade follows an unconfirmed rumor which have been circulating for the last three weeks that there exist a “hit list” featuring CCG leaders and some current (and former) leaders of the United Democratic Party (UDP) and the Democratic Turnhalle Alliance (DTA). It is also believed that there are some Vambos and Caprivians hired to assassinate those nationalists on the list. Comrade Kangongo, like all CCG leaders is believed to be on such a list.

With all these, we have reason to believe that something sinister might have happened or done to him by either the Namibian Police, the Hit Squad, Political leaders insulted in video reported by New Era Newspaper, or some Namibian community members who might have been influenced by Ndeitunga’s call to condemn secessionists and not to “allow anyone to distabilise peace and security in Namibia”. It is therefore our conviction that if anything negative happened to Cde. Kangongo, the Inspector General and New Era Newspaper should be held responsible if not accountable.

We also call upon human rights organisations and the international community to keep their eyes on Caprivi Strip and to condemn the state funded witch hunt and/or manhunt and human rights violations perpetuated against suspected Caprivi nationalists, CCG leaders and sympathisers. Our lives are in danger, and anything can happen to us anytime.

Edwin M Samati

Secretary General

Caprivi Concerned Group

Caprivi Strip, Southern Africa

concernedcaprivians@gmail.com

PRESS RELEASE: WHOEVER STOLE AND RELEASED THE VIDEO SHOULD BE IDENTIFIED AND CHARGED

Caprivi Concerned Group

30 April 2016

Katima Mulilo, Caprivi Strip

PRESS RELEASE: WHOEVER STOLE AND RELEASED THE VIDEO SHOULD BE IDENTIFIED AND CHARGED

Caprivi Concerned Group unapologetically confirms that the video clip being circulated through WhatsApp and other means on which Newera Newspaper published a story last Friday, is our private property which was recorded in a private place for private purposes.

However, we further state and confirm that we are not responsible for releasing or distributing the said clip. The content of the video was not with all intent meant for public exposure, nor to harm any individual, any legal person or the Namibian state.

We urge our supporters and sympathisers not to panic and to support the Inspector General of NAMPOL, Cde. Sebastian Ndeitunga, in his quest to trace the culprit who obviously stole and released the video. We have also consulted our legal advisors and there is a possibility of oppening a criminal case of theft in which we expect Newera newspaper and NBC to help with investigations or be held liable.

It is undisputable that anyone with the video, i.e. the newspapers or NBC, did not seek the consent from us the legal owners of the clip. However, we are not surprised that the state newspaper and television decided to report about the video on Friday 29 April 2016, the date which was set for a hearing on the Caprivi treason appeal in Windhoek High Court. It is not just a coincidence, it was planned for political reasons and to distract or I’ll influence the cause of justice.

In conclusion, we advise those who are circulating the clip that they should stop doing so as it is un-African and an abomination to share malicious insults of elders, it infringes the personal liberty or integrity of our respected and humble leaders, and violates our right to privacy. Surely, such acts are also a risk of being charged and convicted of theft or a civil law suit.

We call upon the Namibian Police Inspector General to investigate and find the person who stole and published the clip. If possible, there should be a N$10 000 reward by Nampol for anyone who will name the culprit.

God bless Caprivi Strip! The struggle continues…

Executive Leadership

Caprivi Concerned Group

CAPRIVI CONCERNED GROUP AND UDP EX-POLITICAL PRISONERS Joint Press Statement: Caprivi Is Not Part Of Namibia

 

Caprivi Concerned Groupcaprivi_04

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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CAPRIVI CONCERNED GROUP AND UDP EX-POLITICAL PRISONERS

Joint Press Statement: Caprivi Is Not Part Of Namibia

 

13 December 2015

We are here to express our shock and disappointment on the long jail term sentences given to our fellow countrymen by Judge Elton Hoff, and to clarify the historical and political status of Caprivi Strip against Hoff’s claims.

The facts that they already spent 16 years in prison, that their trial took twelve (12) years, that they were tortured, and that they were detained for four years without trial, are all violations of human rights and goes against the Namibian constitution and international principles of Justice. Sentencing a 72 years old to 35 years effective jail terms, who suffers from chronic illnesses such diabetes, is an effective life or death sentence.

There was no inch of mercy. The Caprivian people should be the society in whose interest the judgment or sentencing must have featured prominently. The Caprivian society is not happy, God is not happy, and not even the devil is pleased with this injustice.

The Anglo-German (Helgoland) treaty of 01 July 1890 demarcated the Caprivi Strip and made it a German sphere of influence not a German colony. While South West Africa was a German colony since 1884, Caprivi Strip was never and has never been a German colony, neither a German protectorate, but just a German Sphere of Influence. In this agreement, German could not and never claim sovereignty over the Strip.

The signature of Mishake Muyongo in the Namibian constitution is the same signature endorsed on the SWAPO – CANU merger, and if it matters in the former, it should equally matter in the latter, or else it should not be considered to have effect in all, and at all. Besides, the signature and both documents were not by design and purpose meant to incorporate the two separate territories. If a learned Judge and learned politicians fail to distinguish between a colony and a Sphere of Influence, or between Mishake Muyongo and Caprivi Strip, Caprivians should not be punished for that.

A unitary state is usually a democratic state and it is not a permanent or static state. Political leaderships change, challenges change, people change and boundaries can also change. All reasons or arguments being tossed around to justify the victimization and occupation of Caprivians are just excuses, not genuine reasons.

In September 2015, Judge Hoff claimed that Caprivi Strip became part of German South-West Africa (now Namibia) in 1890 through the Zanzibar-Heligoland treaty. This should have been enough, if it was a fact and convincingly substantiated.

However, addressing the same issue of jurisdiction, on 8 December 2015 the same learned and honorable Judge claimed that Caprivi became part of Namibia in 1990 when Muyongo signed the Namibian constitution to endorse Namibia as a unitary state. This proves lack of confidence, in and by the Judge himself on the matter. When exactly then did Caprivi become part of Namibia, is it 1890 or 1990? Take note that Namibian laws were forcefully made to apply to Caprivi Strip in 1999, by Act 10 of 1999!

Many Caprivians are currently living in foreign countries as refugees, many have been killed and buried in mass graves, many died in political detention, and many were tortured and sentenced mercilessly. Generally, many lives have been lost and many are suffering because of this political dispute. We know that the purpose of the severe sentence was to intimidate and frustrate Caprivians, but we remain poised and determined to step forward in our struggle always.

We are here to inform Government of Namibia that we will not be deterred by intrusion or any form of force from telling the historical facts of Caprivi Strip or from demanding freedom and independence. We strongly believe that Namibia has no sovereignty over the Caprivi Strip, and Namibian courts have no jurisdiction over the people of Caprivi Strip. This is the belief we are prepared to die for.

We know that 18 years sentence given and served by Toivo ya Toivo and other Namibians in South Africa did not make them South Africans. We know how our forefathers were publicly roasted on fire, and how many others were brutally killed or tortured, but that never deterred people from resisting the apartheid regime.

We do not need the “Land of the Brave”; we want to see the “Braves of that land”! We want the Namibian political leadership to be honest and brave enough, and enter into dialogue with the United Democratic Party’s leadership as soon as possible, instead of using or hiding behind the courts and illiterate members of the police force.

If Government of Namibia thinks that it is only a minority of Caprivians who belief in an independent Caprivi Strip, we challenge them to allow a UN organized referendum so that they shame us or shame them, while that will put this dispute to rest.

 

Forward Ever, Backward Never!!

Thank you

 

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Retief Kangongo                                            Rex kapanga

Deputy Chairman                                         Senior Representative

Caprivi Concerned Group                             UDP Former political prisoners

 

 

Joint Press Release 5

Joint Press Release 2

Joint Press Release 4

Joint Press Release 1

 

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PDF FILE

Joint Press Statement: Caprivi Is Not Part Of Namibia

 

OUR RIGHTS. OUR FREEDOMS. ALWAYS.

Caprivi Concerned Group

OUR RIGHTS. OUR FREEDOMS. ALWAYS.

IN COMMEMORATION OF THE INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS DAY, 2015

Caprivi Concerned Group joins the entire world to commemorate the international human rights day. It is 67 years ago, on 10 December 1948 when the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration on Human Rights. Two years later, in 1950, the Assembly passed a resolution inviting all interested states and organisations to observe 10 December as a Human Rights Day.

This year’s theme is “Our Rights. Our Freedoms. Always.” The United Nations will launch a year-long campaign for the 50th Anniversary of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), which were adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 16 December 1966.

The year-long campaign will resolve around rights and freedoms, mainly freedom of speech, freedom of expression, and freedom from fear, amongst others, which are still as relevant as they were when the two Convenants were adopted about 50 years ago, according to UN.

Coming home, in the Caprivi Strip, it was in April 2015 when peaceful protestors who demanded verbal or written answers on their demands for plots were teargassed, shot with rubber bullets and assaulted, a situation which saw many fainting and a pregnant lady losing her pregnancy as a result of teargas suffocation. It is at this scene where staff members of Katima Mulilo Town Council were seen firing live bullets with shot guns while others were cheering the members of the police force for their aggressive conduct.

Secondly, on the 30th of June 2015, Caprivians were deported from their motherland, ordered by the Namibian government to go back to exile, accusing them of promoting secession and using subversive language against government. These Caprivians were in company of UNHCR and Botswana government representatives, in a mission to come and see how peaceful Caprivi under Namibian government is, so that they decide and influence others to voluntarily repartriate.

In August 2015, leaders of Caprivi Concerned Group and suspected supporters of the group were banned or barred by members of the Police force from attending a public meeting hosted by the Namibian President, Dr. Hage Geingob. This was reported in a newspaper, and was also directly reported to the regional Governor, Hon. Lawrence Sampofu but nothing was done.

Not so long ago, last year, November 2014, dosens of “No Vote” promotional t-shirts were confiscated by the Namibian police, and ‘No Vote” Activists were detained, stripped naked and peppersprayed by the Police. This was reported to SADC election observers and was reported on national television and in newspapers. However, government did nothing again.

It is of utmost importance to mention that in both conventions, namely the ICESCR and the ICCPR, the right to self determination is enshrined therein. These covenants, together with the UDHR form the sacred UN International Bill of Rights. All rights in the bill of rights should be respected indiscriminately. The right to self determination remains one of the most relevant right for the people of Caprivi Strip, and is mainly the reason they have been tortured, sent to exile, prison and mass graves, and even denied the freedom of speech or expression by the Namibian government.

It is against this background that we submit that the human rights situation in Caprivi Strip should be scrutinized by the international community, particularly the United Nations. Many human rights violations have been committed by the Namibian government but no state or organization have cautioned or reprimanded Namibia for such violations. Many Caprivians flew to exile fearing for their lives, many have been sent to prison, many died in prison, many were tortured, and many were buried in mass graves by the Namibian government but the international community is dead silent on these issues.

While the Caprivi High Treason trail took unreasonably too long, we appreciate the fact that it has come to conclusion and that about 50% of high treason sentences were suspended, and about 75% of the accused were acquitted. We also hope that somehow, the court or the correctional service consider deducting pre-trial and pre-sentencing years already spent in custody from the effective jail terms sentenced, despite that it was part of the mitigation arguments.

We also take this opportunity to call on the Namibian government to lift the ban it imposed on the United Democratic Party in 2006, so that Caprivians can freely and peacefully express their political opinions formally without resorting to violence again. Government should also relaxing restrictions on the public call-in radio show (open line) on Lozi Service, and allow a broader scope for political discussions instead of treating issues relating to the Caprivi political dispute as treasonous or not allowed.

All states and human rights organisations are obliged to protect or defend human rights, and should be practical to that effect, then the 50th aniversary of the ICESCR and the ICCPR will be worth celebrating.

We wish all human beings a peaceful observation of the international human rights day, 2015!

Edwin M Samati

Secretary General

Caprivi Concerned Group

www.capriviconcernedgroup.com

 

FORCED REPATRIATION OF CAPRIVI REFUGEES WOULD BE REGRETTABLE

Caprivi Concerned Group

Press Statement, 12 October 2015

FORCED REPATRIATION OF CAPRIVI REFUGEES WOULD BE REGRETTABLE

The continued unnecessary pressure from the Tripartite Commission comprising of UNHCR, Botswana and Namibia on Caprivian refugees to come back home is a risky move, which in our view is a violation of refugees rights. Namibia is not yet ready to accept or peacefully work with UDP leaders and members, hence, the come back of such leaders and members would be chaotic.

The Caprivi Concerned Group continues to call for a lasting and peaceful political solution to the dispute which led those refugees to flee their motherland to Botswana. In all our efforts, Namibia remains reluctant and negative. Ignoring the soft voices or peaceful expressions in any political conflict yield unintended consequences. Strangely, UNHCR in Geneva reportedly endorsed the cessation clause on Caprivian refugees in Botswana.

In September 1982 then President of Botswana, Quett Khetumile Masire, ignored a humble request from CANU to intervene or advice SWAPO on the issue of Caprivi. Sixteen years later, thousands of Caprivians flew to Botswana, as a result of the same issue! Botswana should not repeat this mistake. It is a peaceful country, and should not only be refuge in southern Africa but also lead in conflict resolution in the region.

We do not reject voluntary repatriation in its true meaning and faithful implementation as it has been done since 1999. The true meaning of the concept and approach of voluntary repatriation is compromised if it is carried out with threats which do not solve the primary cause which led such refugees to flee. If refugees are given a deadline and are threatened be deported, how can that be referred to as a voluntary process?

It is commendable that these refugees still have time to listen and even make proposals to the commission, despite that their opinion and interests are not considered, after more than three successive meetings and submissions. It is unfortunate and unacceptable for the commission to continue treating refugees like objects which have no soul, no mind and no feelings.

We know that Government of Namibia lost an extradition case against some Caprivian refugees in 2010 in Botswana High Court, and the reasons which were advanced against extradition firmly stand against forced repatriation.

In conclusion, we plead with the tripartite commission to engage the refugees without any political or social prejudice. Namibia is also advised to level the political playing field to allow UDP leaders and members to exercise their political rights.

Edwin Samati

Secretary General
Caprivi Concerned Group

 

CANCELLATION OF “COME SEE MISSION TO NAMIBIA” PROGRAM IS AN ABROGATION OF THE CESSATION CLAUSE AGREEMENT

Caprivi Concerned Group

PRESS RELEASE

02 July 2015

CANCELLATION OF “COME SEE MISSION TO NAMIBIA” PROGRAM IS AN ABROGATION OF THE CESSATION CLAUSE AGREEMENT

Namibia and Botswana governments agreed on 6 March 2015 that “the date for the invocation of Cessation Clause in respect to the Namibian refugees in Botswana should be 31 December 2015”, according to APANews and some Namibian news media. The two governments further discussed and agreed to implement the action plan proposed by UNHCR, which includes the “Go See” and “Come tell” visits in respect of these refugees.

Namibia, through Hon. Pendukeni Livula Ithana, stated several times in Botswana and in Namibia that it is desirous and ready for the concerned refugees to come back home through voluntary repatriation, and that it is committed to abide by all relevant international laws concerning refugees or repatriation. These sentiments should be viewed as the basis of the sacred trust earned by Namibia from Botswana and UNHCR, and also be taken as conditions for the Cessation Clause agreement.

However, we are very disappointed that Namibia’s central government and the Caprivi regional council was not represented in the “Come See Mission” community meetings held at Liselo, Kasheshe and Nampengu on Tuesday, 30 June 2015.

Surprisingly, the next day, 1st July 2015 the program was unilaterally revoked by the Namibian government without consulting its partners in the tripartite commission, and refugees were ordered to go back to exile the same day within a specified time frame or they would be arrested. The program was not a Namibian program as an individual state but a program collectively agreed upon and funded by or together with UNHCR and Botswana government, and Namibia cannot therefore decide to alone.

Namibian officials have been preaching voluntary repatriation and peace to refugees in Botswana, but such officials i.e Nkrumah Mushelenga and the the Honorable Minister Ithana were no where to be seen when their partners from a neighboring country came to Namibia on the same subject or program. When refugees come to see and hear the peace preached, they are ordered to go back by the same government which is urging them to come.

In our opinion, the absence of regional or central government in the “come see mission” community meetings and the subsquent unileteral cancellation of the “come see” program by Namibia is a diplomatic insult to partners, a breach of own constitution together with the refugee convention of 1951, and it is clearly an abrogation of the “Cessation Clause” agreement.

The refugees on this mission did not commit any crime. A cabinet directive to ban a political party, can not be treated as a repeal of any law enshrined in the constitution, nor should it be taken as a new law. It is embarrassing. The Cabinet ban on United Democratic Party or the so called conditions alleged to have been violated by these refugees or any individual are contrary to Article 17(1) and Article 21(1)(a,b,d,e) of the Namibian constitution which provides for freedom to form or join political parties, freedom to assemble without arms, and freedom of thought, speech and expression.

Against this background, Botswana government, UNHCR and other stakeholders should consider the conduct of Namibia not only as an indication that it is not safe for the refugees to return to Caprivi without a political solution, but also as an abrogation of the “Cessation Clause” agreement between Botswana and Namibia signed in March this year.

Edwin Samati

Secretary General

Caprivi Concerned Group

www.capriviconcernedgroup.com

Cc: UDP

NAMRIGHTS

DITSWANELO

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL SA

BOTSWANA GOVERNMENT

UNHCR

SADC