THE Barotseland Agreement of 1964 yesterday brought about mixed emotions to delegates attending the Constitution-making National Convention where some delegates wanted the Agreement embodied in the preamble while others were against.
Chairperson of the whole House Muyunda Mwanalushi had a tough time to control proceedings prompting him to call on the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) to conduct elections over the matter using a secret ballot.
The elections were however, stayed after the chair again ruled that the matter was emotive and the voting should be deferred to a later time.
Former Speaker of the National Assembly Amusaa Mwanamwambwa, in kicking off debate on the matter, said one party to the agreement progressively abrogated it without consultation with the other party.
Mr Mwanamwambwa said he was a nationalist himself in 1959 and now over 50 years down the line, the issue of the Barotseland Agreement had not been forgotten and there was no sign that it would be forgotten in the near future.
“That is why it is important that the Agreement should be in the preamble of the Constitution,” he said.
Heritage Party leader Godfrey Miyanda proposed that the Barotseland Agreement matter should be taken to government so that at other fora, through extensive consultations, the issue can be discussed and an amicable solution found.
But Kembe Member of Parliament Ronnie Shikapwasha disagreed with General Miyanda and maintained that the Agreement should be in the preamble of the Constitution.
This opened a pandora box as almost all the delegates wanted to participate in the debate while others were interjecting through points of order.
The voting over the Barotseland Agreement of 1964 has since been deferred as the last item on the agenda on the on-going constitution convention.