Published: Sep 01, 2014 - 04:28 PM
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NamRights is alarmed by fresh allegations that pro-referendum and pro-independence groups as well as individual nationalists in the disputed Caprivi Strip (now called “Zambezi Region”) have increasingly come under “daily surveillance” and other acts of intimidation coming from members of Namibian intelligence and police as well as other “foreign occupationist” forces.

The groups include the Caprivi Concerned Group (“CCG”) and Caprivi African National Union (“CANU”).

Activists from particularly the two groups as well as individual nationalists have complained to NamRights that their peaceful activities have come under “severe constraints” by agents of Namibian Central Intelligence Service ("NCIS") as well as from members of the Namibian Police Force ("NamPol").

“Agents from these foreign occupationist forces are sowing fear and are threatening to arrest anyone associating with our pro-referendum and pro-independence groups. Our homes and movements are being monitored and our peaceful information sharing and other awareness meetings have come under the spotlight of the Namibian police. .Death threats and threats of assassination and enforced disappearance as well as job loss have become increasingly become daily occurrences in our Caprivi Strip Motherland”, said the Caprivi Strip activists.

They particularly accused two NamPol officers, a certain Evans Simasiku and his friend known only as Amakali, of having traveled to Makanga village on August 18 2014 where they have interrogated traditional leaders about what had been discussed during a CCG information sharing meeting held at the said village on August 10 2014. The name Evans Simasiku has featured prominently in virtually every allegation of torture and other ill-treatment of Caprivi High Treason accused!

The said groups have been formed to inter alia campaign for (1) a peaceful resolution of the Caprivi Strip dispute, (2) the unconditional release of all Caprivi Strip political prisoners, and (3) peaceful and safe return of all Caprivi Strip exiles followed by a referendum under UN supervision.

Hundreds of Caprivi Strip residents have fled the country 1998 following intensified and systematic human rights violations by Namibian security forces. At least 130 other Caprivi Strip nationalists were rounded up following an attack in the Strip on August 2 1999. They were each charged with 278 relating to high treason. At least 22 have since died under mysterious circumstances while in NamPol custody while more than 40 accused persons have been acquitted on all charges after having been in NamPol custody for close to 13 years. There are only now 75 Caprivi Strip nationalists who are still alive and are facing high treason charges in three separate high treason trials.

Caprivi Strip is an identifiable and colonial-type international territory which is politically, economically, socially, legally, administratively and ethno-culturally separate and distinct from Namibia and South Africa as contemplated under Chapter XI and Chapter XII of UN Charter. Accordingly, the people of Caprivi Strip is entitled to exercise its inalienable right to self-determination including independence.

The primary objectives of League of Nations (“LoN”) Mandate and UN Trusteeship (“Trusteeship”) Systems were to promote the well-being and development of all those colonies and territories, which, as a consequence of World War I, have ceased to be under the sovereignty of the States which had formerly administered them and which are inhabited by peoples not yet able to stand by themselves. The primary objectives of the LoN Mandate and UN Trusteeship systems were to enable all colonial territories to attain “a full measure of self-government” and eventually to become independent states. There exists no legal instrument in terms of which British sovereignty, if any, over Caprivi Strip has been transferred to [Union of] South Africa or from [Union of] South Africa to former German South West Africa (GSWA) and subsequently to independent Namibia. Namibia’s formal and violent annexation of Caprivi Strip took place on June 24 1999 in terms of its hastily passed Application of Laws to the Eastern Caprivi Zipfel Act 1999 (Act 10 of 1999).

Currently Caprivi Strip is not listed by UN as one of the 17 Trusteeship and Non-Self Governing Territories (“TNSGTs”). Nonetheless, contemporary customary international law, customary international humanitarian law and customary international human rights law strictly criminalize the continuation of colonialism and or foreign domination or occupation in all its forms and manifestations. International law therefore obliges all administering States to immediately transfer sovereignty over all and any colonial-type territories to their inhabitants. END