Barotseland: BNFA Publicity Secretary Dies
The Publicity Secretary of the Barotse National Freedom Alliance (BNFA), Mr Evans Situmbeko Musiyalela, who was responsible for the organization’s relationship with the media, passed away last Thursday [24 September 2015]. His death was met with hundreds of mourners from the Barotse community, who gave him a fitting farewell on Saturday [26 September 2015].
Below is an article published by the Barotseland Post:
The Barotse National Freedom Alliance (BNFA) Publicity Secretary Hon. Situmbeko Musiyalela is dead. He died in the early morning of yesterday, Thursday, 24th September, 2015 after being discharged from Lewanika General Hospital two days earlier.
He suffered some ulcer problems for some time.
Mr. Musialela represented the BNFA and Barotseland at various media forum, including a very recent TV appearance on Zambia’s privately owned Muvi TV ‘The Assignment’ program in Lusaka last month, where he openly and fearlessly articulated Barotseland matters in the hour long interview.
Meanwhile, confirming his passing away, the BNFA secretary General and BNFA counterpart had this to say about Musialela,
“He was strong, courageous, forthright and controversial to say the least. Gone! Gone too soon and too near the finishing line.
“Mutompehi Evans Musialela, Rest in peace mwanahesu! Words cannot explain or quantify our sense of loss.
“Rest in peace and rest assured we are not giving up the struggle until we get to the finishing line.”
Below is an article published by the Barotseland Post:
Hundreds of Barotse nationals today turned up to bid farewell to Hon Evans Musialela Situmbeko for a funeral procession that kicked off in Mungu and ended at Sefula where the deceased was put to rest.
The enthusiastic mourners sang the Barotseland national anthem, Bulozi fasi la Bondata aluna, and other patriotic songs as they bade farewell to their compatriot.
The Barotse Imilema were on hand to give their senior compatriot unparallel display of Loyalty and Dedication never seen before now, as they adorned their departed senior’s casket in the ‘red’ model Barotseland flag.
Social Media group, Barotseland Watchdog has declared in reference to today’s display of solidarity, “Our Hope Can Never fade. Now More than Ever Before, the Independence of Barotseland Nears!”
Meanwhile the BNFA Chairman General, Clement W Sinyinda, has written the below tribute on behalf of the organization Hon. Musialela served as Publicity Secretary, as can be found on the BNFA official website.
Today, Saturday 26th September in the year of our Lord 2015, we put to rest a gallant son of the soil and a true hero in every sense of the word, Mutompehi Evans Situmbeko Musialela. He was strong, courageous, forthright, outspoken and sometimes controversial to say the least. He meant many different things to different people. To the wife he was a loving and caring husband, to the children a dependable and providing farther, to other family members and relatives a pillar and stronghold. Yet to the Barotse National Freedom Alliance (BNFA) and indeed to the people of Barotseland as a whole, the firebrand Publicity and Information Secretary was a key piece in the whole jigsaw of the noble struggle to actualize Barotseland statehood struggle. He is an irreplaceable loss.
Mutompehi Musialela stood without fear or favour for the right. He stood for Barotseland’s RIGHT to self-determination. In speech and in deed, he did not falter or waver in his belief that the people of Barotseland had a RIGHT to self-determination and self-rule like any other people or nation on the surface of this earth. He knew what he believed and believed what he knew. Like Nelson Madiba Mandela, he committed himself to these ideals and was committed to hold on to them for as long as he lived and if need be, he was prepared to die for the ideals because he believed with every ounce within himself the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jnr. that “If you have nothing to die for, then you have nothing to live for”.
Mutompehi Musialela is one of those that helped to bring the Barotseland struggle from the closet and dark corners it had been confined to for well over four decades to the byways and highways, to rooftops, hilltops and even mountaintops where it is today. Due to his efforts combined with the efforts of other compatriots in the just and noble struggle for Barotseland’s RIGHT to self-determination and self-rule, we can safely say that the finishing line in this struggle is well in sight. From a distance we can see the end with our naked eyes.
That is why it is so heart-breaking that we have to put to rest this weary soldier when the haven of rest from our struggle is in sight!
Gone Musialela! Gone too soon,
Gone Mwanahesu! Gone too close to the finishing line,
No words can explain or quantify the sense of loss you have left.
Rest in peace, and rest assured that what you stood for,
We will stand for to the finishing line!
We can only say rest in peace weary soldier of the struggle for the right. Rest assured that we are not giving up the ideals for which you together with us stood for until we cross the finishing line because like you, we too strongly believe that Freedom is coming tomorrow. When we receive the sweet for our sweat it will be for you also and we are well assured that you will be turning in your grave when that great “uhuru” day finally comes. It will be so gratifying then for each of us to celebrate our victory with the full assurance that it is also for you and because of you and other fallen heroes of this struggle that it shall be possible to eat the fruits of our toil.
May the great soul of this gallant soldier of Barotseland rest in peace together with those like him that have gone before. Let all the compatriots in this struggle double their efforts knowing that it is also for our departed brothers and sisters that we struggle. Let all the enemies of the struggle not for once think that because of our irreparable loss we will relent or slowdown in any slightest way. Let the whole world know that our loss notwithstanding, it is aluta continua until we get to the finishing line.
Rest in eternal peace Musialela Mwanahesu
photo courtesy of Helle Lauridsen