His Royal Highness Chitimukulu Kanyanta Manga II has said that nationalism is no longer revolutionary like it was before but fake stating that there is a fundamental difference between revolutionary nationalism which is dependent upon a people’s revolution and reactionary nationalism in which the end goal is the oppression of the poor masses.
He said this at the official book launch of King Lewanika I of Barotseland and Zambia: Broken promises by Akashambatwa Mbikusita Lewanika held at the University of Zambia Great East Road Campus last Friday.
His royal highness established that the people must embark on cultural nationalism that is, they must seek to increase the individuality of the peasant by increasing areas of choice and decision. “These are people who do not make enforceable decisions with social consequences,” he said.
He further established that the book that was launched was not about Lozi nationalism, but about cultural nationalism. He said that the great masterpiece in all this is that the author was simply opening the minds of the people to the concept of ‘Ubuntu’ and that is human beings having the ability to cut through their differences to the rock bottom identity of interest.
“Let me make it clearer, what we normally read about it in the Bible is the history and politics of the Hebrews or the Israelites, he said “but in essence God chose to reveal himself and what he requires of us through that small nation. We see the works and the almighty power of God through the way he dealt with that nation and certain individuals like Abraham, Moses, Samuel and King David.
His royal highness wondered what people think the people of Barotseland are struggling for and said that the author was trying to tell us to find who we really are. We need to find ourselves in order to be free: free from self-despise and self-hate as black people.
He further highlighted that the concept of Ubuntu deals with clear understanding of self, which is intertwined with identity and a sense of self-esteem. What lacks in this scenario is not intellect or artificially accumulated book knowledge per se, but understanding of self or the ability to relate to one’s whole being to the rest of the universe he said. He said that there is need for a certain amount of harmony between the evidence of the senses and socially shared images of self and the universe.
“This is important because culture operates as a balancing force within the personality and compensates the one-sidedness of a person’s thoughts, aims and attitudes,” he said. The governance system of the Bemba speaking people is one such example with an effective system when harnessed is another landmark contribution to the world he established.
”The Ashanti and the Akan tribes of Ghana as well as the Lozi of western Zambia among others in Africa have in the history of Africa recorded magnificent traditional systems of governance which when put together could provide an agenda for an authentic political identity,” he said. He lastly attributed that the end result of pursuing the western culture to its end results into one having a perverted mind.
Also speaking at the same event, author of the books Akashambatwa Mbikusita Lewanika said that he was impressed and heartened with the overwhelming support he had received from the public on the launch of the book. Mr Lewanika said that the one of the books particularly the one talking about King Lewanika I which is a reflection on his legacy, the history behind him as well as what has happened to his legacy. He said that the book is not a biography of King Lewanika but rather a contextualization of him. The other book which called Zambia broken promises re-examines the reality of what has happened and consequences to popular slogans such as ‘One Man One Vote’ and ‘One Zambia One Nation and ‘The Hour Has Come’ he said.
He further highlighted that one of the problems that is affecting the readership values in the country is bad reading culture especially to such vital information which would help the society understand, identify and place themselves in national issues and structures.
He said that there is a need for people particularly students who have the influence to encourage and discuss content and analysis of information. “Each book you read takes you into knowing more about a topic and one book leads you to other books which is important for gathering more information,” he said.
Tapela Lungu is an award winning writer and Media and Communication studies student at the University of Zambia who has a strong passion to write, read and explore. He is currently the Managing Editor for the online magazine. As a writer he has a strong interest for human interest stories, community news and stories that impact human development and health.