MPLA’sPlan for Destabilisation of theCabindan Nation
MPLA’sPlan for Destabilisation of theCabindan Nation
The culture of a people is reflected in their language, customs and traditions that along with its history and geographic location are the typical expression of their identity. So, all people have striven to have, maintain and develop stages of cultural expansion and diffusion of their way of life and values to cement that identity and preservetheir special features and forms as a vital cultural content ensuring the survival of theirhistory. Cabinda will not be the exception of this postulate.
This is not exclusive to great and powerful peoples, but a prerogative of all peoples or nations including the people of Cabinda. If the Aborigines in Australia were saved from extermination by the British, who claimed the territory as a colonial possession in 1770, in recognition of the existential rights of the Aborigines;it would be disastrous to allow, inthe XXI century, Angola to continue to act in anachronistic way as if we were reliving the period of conquest and colonization of the world by Europeans of centuries ago. The world has changed and has now evolved to establish a “global village” which reaffirms the identities of peoples and nations as part of a global project that aims to reduce discrepancies in terms of development and the quality of human life, and respect for human rights.
The question of identity has always been evoked when different people come into contact either peacefully or violently, regardless of the reasons behind this contact, be it in the conquest of new lands or colonization, or seeking better living conditions, adventure or tourism.
People can mix peacefully and voluntarily, for example, when people embrace migration in an orderly and planned way or multinationals engage in movement of capital and goods across borders. That is usually accompanied by managing people in the hope of expanding their business and raising more revenue, while creating new opportunities, and aiming to reduce asymmetries of the quality oflife for indigenous people in terms of employment and development. This is welcome for local people, but it is clearly not the case with the Angolan presence in Cabinda promoted by the MPLA.
However, people can also mix in a violent manner, for example, when individuals, families, ethnic groups, peoples or nations are persecuted and forced to submit to another people by myths of superiority or simple greed for natural resources in colonial style, as is the case in Cabinda. This can occur because of political, cultural, and religious beliefs,and a desirefor a better way of life, which includesfreedom of expression and association, human rights, democratic openings ‘de facto’, respect for human life and for the common good, and self-determination as in the case of the martyred people of Cabinda.
People under persecution are forced to emigrate individually, collectively or in a realpopular exodus similar thatin Cabinda since 1974.This was the result of military occupation of the territory by the MPLA forces followed by itsannexation to Angola soon after its independence in 1975.
From this occupation and annexation, the MPLA has aimed, on the basis of a well-designed draconian plan, at the destabilization of the Cabindan nation embodied in a massive recruitment of Cabindan young people of both sexes, in the early years of its independence, to fight in the fratricide war between MPLA and UNITA, and against the South African forces in southern Angola, making them intocannon fodder. Many of these young people met a tragic end.Some died without notice to their families up to this day, and others are marked with indelible traumas and disabilities of various degrees caused by an inglorious war.
With the end of the war in Angola, the people of Cabinda becamea direct victims of the defence and security forces of the MPLA regime inside and outside Cabindan territory, summarized in the intensification of violence, harassment, abduction, arbitrary arrests, torture, killings and summary executions without mercy.
Moreover, the regime of theMPLA forced the transfer and centralization of employment centres of the main employers ofcompanies like Chevron-Texaco from Cabinda to Luanda,while their operationsare in Cabinda, in order to deprive Cabindan young peopleof employment.Theyare compelled to go to Luanda to apply for an existing vacancy in Cabinda.
All this aims to destabilize the Cabindan youth and ruin the future of the Cabindan nation. Thus, these young people findthemselveslostin Angolain the middle ofthe bureaucratic system ofthe MPLA’s regime and eventually find themselves with financial difficulties for their living and in some cases unable to return to Cabinda.
For various reasons they end up lost in Luanda without support or guidance, while the Angolan youth, familiar with the MPLA system in Luanda, come and fill these vacancies in Cabinda. This isthe new way mastered by the MPLA regime to catalyze the destabilization of the Cabindan nation by destroying the future of its youth.
Cabindans live miserably in the territory considered one of the richest in Africa but poor in all aspects of life (health, housing, education, employment, etc.), but Angolan officials ofthe MPLA say ironically that Cabinda is privileged … In misery? The people of Cabinda have never again found peace and live in appalling conditions with regard to their safety, and human and social development,because of their claim as a people and nation in terms of self-determination, and even discriminated in the enjoyment of the resources of the subsoil, which God has given them.
Cabinda is victim of the vicissitudes of the MPLA regime at a time the world recognizes that the right for ‘Freedom’ is eternal and universal; and the people and leaders of the developed world recognize their obligation to position themselves on the right side of history, to defend the dignity of every ‘human being’, to be the voice of the voiceless, and promise not to abandon people who fight for freedom.
People of Cabinda, the world is quiet but not at all indifferent because it monitors and records all events that occur in Cabinda; so it is now up to Cabindans, as well, in all parts of the world to engage positively, without distraction, to make the developed world move from the passive position of observationand recordsto anothermore active stance ofinterpellation.
The last demonstrations planned by Cabindan youth with the support of the Cabindangeneral publicto express their displeasure to the condition to which theyare subject, and vetoed by the MPLA regime in breach of its own laws, demonstrates clearly the panic and despair within the MPLA regime.It did not hesitate to deploy its repressive machine to stop them happening, though they were peaceful. This is a sign of concern, which transcends the impediment of a simple peaceful popular demonstration that time will take care of interpreting.
Furthermore, it confirms unequivocally the growing intolerance of a regime that calls itself democratic, which actually is not, andwant to confuse the world using fallacies that the issue of Cabinda is internal and has found solution under its forged memorandum of Namibe. While that wasunanimously rejected by the people of Cabinda. MPLA’s regime is unable to use civility to hear a peaceful people’smessagefrom ordinary Cabindans, so how can they claim to be in peace with the people of Cabinda?
Therefore, it is imperative that the MPLA regime consider the release of all young people arrested in Cabinda including doctors: José Marcos Mavungo and Aarão Tempo, who were accused of instigating the manifestation aborted by its security apparatus. Furthermore, it should release all political prisoners and civic activists of Cabinda who are incarcerated by MPLA regime as a gesture of change in attitude and goodwill, and start the honest and transparent dialogue aimed at finding a lasting solution to the question of Cabinda. The MPLA regime has always had plans for war, plans for destabilization and co-optation of weak consciences in Cabinda, but never had a genuine peace plan that Cabindans so much crave.
It is settled principle that everything that transcends the basic standards of civility violatesand endangers the foundations of dignity and human rights. These are aspects that go beyond thelimits ofborders and states’ sovereignty, since the defence of the human species justifies the determinationof the international community to prevent any cruel treatment degrading human dignity against defenceless people ofwhich humanity still holds fresh and horrible memories.In tune with this idea the people of Cabinda do expect the civilised world to take a stance and help to bring a lasting solution to the grievances of Cabindan people because the MPLA’s regime is not interested and, thus, not able to do so.
It is said that, ‘the history is always present in global issues and conflicts in all regions. Events do not happen without reason. They are rooted in grandimperative narratives and constraints that determine tomorrow’s results. Politicians can sign treaties, memos and make statements according to their interests and ignore the truth; maps can beredrawn periodically; but the geography remains a quiet strength, always present, which drives the needs and behaviours of nations. It is, in essence, the rule book of history’. Therefore, the world must not ignore the existential threats to which the people of Cabinda are exposed by the MPLA’s regime, which does not think about Cabinda as people and nation entitled to dignity and rights clearly enshrined in the Universal Declaration for Peoples and Human Rights. The MPLA’s regime looks to Cabinda only in the perspective of the resources of its soil.
The people of Cabinda is defenceless, but will not surrender tothe MPLA’s plans of destabilization ofthe Cabindannation, because the struggle of the people of Cabinda is just. The MPLA should make an effort to embrace peaceful language and act in a way that promotes and favours honest and constructive dialogue with Cabindans, and put an end to all delaying tactics whichcontribute nothing to the lasting solution of Cabinda’s issue.For that to happen, we exhort the enlightened people of Angola and the civil society to act actively because what now appears to be only in favour of Cabindans will be in general so good for all Angolans.
The Liberal Forum for the Emancipation of Cabinda is unable to see from which prism the MPLA’s regime can claim to have sorted out the issue of Cabinda, while its effortcontinue directed tohow it can succeed todestabilize the Cabinda-nation under the pacific watch of the free world as a method of endingthe claim of the peaceful people of Cabinda.