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THE FALL OF THE IKALANGA MONARCHY (PART 13) THE END

Jeff Ramsay
BUILDERS OF BOTSWANA

We left off with the Mwali priestess predicting that: "because of Chilisamhulu's jealousy the country will surely perish." One of the Chilisamhulu's sons, Ntinima, pleaded with his father to placate Mwali. But his words fell on deaf ears.

Ntinima also went to Tombale, calling on him to also offer cattle to Mwali. But, Tombale, having grown arrogant with the praises that had been bestowed upon him, also rejected Ntinima's pleas, saying:

"Mine are with Chigeledeka, I shall never agree to give them to that Mwali, the tall old woman who watches, being in the cave into which one cannot see. If she is so strong, why did she herself not go out and fight with those of Kgari?"

Ntinima then took his own cattle to make a personal offering Mwali. But, Priestess was not placated, asking Ntinima why he was bringing cattle when the owners of the country were still refusing? Adding that both Chilisamhulu and Tombale had become hallow like pumpkins, which she would soon pick holes in.

Ntinima relayed Mwali's threats back to the pair but neither would listen, saying that Mwali was a useless old woman.  The Mambo added: "The one who stays in the cave is the one who will die in the cave."

At that moment, it is said that the voice of Mwali was heard out of nowhere cursing the Mambo, speaking first from a house and then from a tree. The Mambo had the house burned down and the tree chopped and burned, but the voice remained, cursing through the wind.

Thereafter, a new group of invaders arrived from the south bearing long stripped shields – the Amangoni followed by the Amandebele.

Most of the first wave of invaders did not stay. An exception was a small but disciplined group led by the female warlord called Nyamazana, who had broken away from the long march of the Jere-Ngoni Nkosi Zwagendaba in order to settle in the heart of Bukalanga. Thereafter, she succeeded where both Zwagendaba and Kgari had failed by defeating Tombale's forces. Deserted on the battlefield, it is said that Tombale committed suicide by poison.

Nyamazana then pressed her advantage by moving rapidly against the now isolated Chilisamhulu. According to some sources, the king and his retainers also committed suicide to avoid capture after being cornered at Manyanga.

The death of the Mambo did not put an immediate end the struggle. One of his sons, Chigadzike, was proclaimed as the new Mambo with the support of the royal guard, including the gunmen still under Ninjigwe.

Yet, despite the demise of both Chilisamhulu and Tombale, it is said that the Mwali still chose to feed on Banyayi misfortune. In 1839 Nyamazana's warriors were reinforced by the much greater Amandebele horde of Nkosi Mzilakazi who had migrated through eastern Botswana following their defeat by the Voortrekkers and allied Batswana. The two groups united, with Nyamazana becoming one of Mzilakazi's Queens.

The expanded Amandebele decisively defeated Chigadzike's Banyayi at a place called Dzimbabwana. Initially, the Banyayi had the advantage of possessing guns and control of the high ground, but Mwali was not with them:

"And the Banyayi had the royal guns with them, which were kept by Ninjigwe, the one who used them…Then they saw that the Amandebele had climbed the mountain on which they were. They then told Ninjigwe: Aim at them with the guns! Aim at them! But when Ninjigwe was shooting with his gun, he found that only smoke and water came from it and that it was no more making a sound."

Soon thereafter there was seen from the mountain a rainbow stretching across the middle of the mountains where the Banyayi army was. And then the voice of Mwali was heard say:

"Amandebele! Sons of the sky! I have got hold of the gun that shoots. I have got a hold of it and it won't shoot anymore. So bring the Banyayi down and kill them. Those who remain must be chased to the Zambezi. I once told Chilisamhulu, when he did not want to obey me, that we would meet again. Today is the final day I spoke of.' The Banyayi then saw that they were defeated."

A secular interpretation of the above is that it must have rained during the battle, in which case Ninjigwe's muzzle-loading muskets would indeed have been rendered useless by the dampening of gunpowder.

With the defeat of Chigadzike and Ninjigwe, the remnant of the Banyayi royal holdouts turned to Chilisamhula's surviving son Ntinima who is said to have retained the affection of Mwali.  For some time they held out from his hilltop stronghold at Buxwa before fleeing to the north-east where merged among the Vazezeru.

Still other holdouts rallied around a local ruler named Chilagwane, who were ultimately surrounded in a number of nearby mountains, with the main body of defenders at a place called Dokonobe.  Unable to initially take the high ground by force, the Amandebele besieged the defenders who ran out of food and water. Some escaped into Botswana, while others perished or were forced to submit. With the fall of Dokonobe and flight of Ntinima the era of the Bakalanga kings was over.

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Export Processing Zones: How to Get SEZA to Sizzle

23rd September 2020
Export Processing Zone (EPZ) factory in Kenya

In 2005, the Business & Economic Advisory Council (BEAC) pitched the idea of the establishment of Special Economic Zones (SEZs) to the Mogae Administration.

It took five years before the SEZ policy was formulated, another five years before the relevant law was enacted, and a full three years before the Special Economic Zones Authority (SEZA) became operational.

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Egypt Bagged Again

23rd September 2020
Samson

… courtesy of infiltration stratagem by Jehovah-Enlil’s clan

With the passing of Joshua’s generation, General Atiku, the promised peace and prosperity of a land flowing with milk and honey disappeared, giving way to chaos and confusion.

Maybe Joshua himself was to blame for this shambolic state of affairs. He had failed to mentor a successor in the manner Moses had mentored him. He had left the nation without a central government or a human head of state but as a confederacy of twelve independent tribes without any unifying force except their Anunnaki gods.

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‘RO, ‘RO ‘RO YOUR ‘BOT

23rd September 2020

If I say the word ‘robot’ to you,  I can guess what would immediately spring to mind –  a cute little Android or animal-like creature with human or pet animal characteristics and a ‘heart’, that is to say to say a battery, of gold, the sort we’ve all seen in various movies and  tv shows.  Think R2D2 or 3CPO in Star Wars, Wall-E in the movie of the same name,  Sonny in I Robot, loveable rogue Bender in Futurama,  Johnny 5 in Short Circuit…

Of course there are the evil ones too, the sort that want to rise up and eliminate us  inferior humans – Roy Batty in Blade Runner, Schwarzenegger’s T-800 in The Terminator,  Box in Logan’s Run,  Police robots in Elysium and  Otomo in Robocop.

And that’s to name but a few.  As a general rule of thumb, the closer the robot is to human form, the more dangerous it is and of course the ultimate threat in any Sci-Fi movie is that the robots will turn the tables and become the masters, not the mechanical slaves.  And whilst we are in reality a long way from robotic domination, there are an increasing number of examples of  robotics in the workplace.

ROBOT BLOODHOUNDS Sometimes by the time that one of us smells something the damage has already begun – the smell of burning rubber or even worse, the smell of deadly gas. Thank goodness for a robot capable of quickly detecting and analyzing a smell from our very own footprint.

A*Library Bot The A*Star (Singapore) developed library bot which when books are equipped with RFID location chips, can scan shelves quickly seeking out-of-place titles.  It manoeuvres with ease around corners, enhances the sorting and searching of books, and can self-navigate the library facility during non-open hours.

DRUG-COMPOUNDING ROBOT Automated medicine distribution system, connected to the hospital prescription system. It’s goal? To manipulate a large variety of objects (i.e.: drug vials, syringes, and IV bags) normally used in the manual process of drugs compounding to facilitate stronger standardisation, create higher levels of patient safety, and lower the risk of hospital staff exposed to toxic substances.

AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY ROBOTS Applications include screw-driving, assembling, painting, trimming/cutting, pouring hazardous substances, labelling, welding, handling, quality control applications as well as tasks that require extreme precision,

AGRICULTURAL ROBOTS Ecrobotix, a Swiss technology firm has a solar-controlled ‘bot that not only can identify weeds but thereafter can treat them. Naio Technologies based in southwestern France has developed a robot with the ability to weed, hoe, and assist during harvesting. Energid Technologies has developed a citrus picking system that retrieves one piece of fruit every 2-3 seconds and Spain-based Agrobot has taken the treachery out of strawberry picking. Meanwhile, Blue River Technology has developed the LettuceBot2 that attaches itself to a tractor to thin out lettuce fields as well as prevent herbicide-resistant weeds. And that’s only scratching the finely-tilled soil.

INDUSTRIAL FLOOR SCRUBBERS The Global Automatic Floor Scrubber Machine boasts a 1.6HP motor that offers 113″ water lift, 180 RPM and a coverage rate of 17,000 sq. ft. per hour

These examples all come from the aptly-named site www.willrobotstakemyjob.com    because while these functions are labour-saving and ripe for automation, the increasing use of artificial intelligence in the workplace will undoubtedly lead to increasing reliance on machines and a resulting swathe of human redundancies in a broad spectrum of industries and services.

This process has been greatly boosted by the global pandemic due to a combination of a workforce on furlough, whether by decree or by choice, and the obvious advantages of using virus-free machines – I don’t think computer viruses count!  For example, it was suggested recently that their use might have a beneficial effect in care homes for the elderly, solving short staffing issues and cheering up the old folks with the novelty of having their tea, coffee and medicines delivered by glorified model cars.  It’s a theory, at any rate.

Already, customers at the South-Korean  fast-food chain No Brand Burger can avoid any interaction with a human server during the pandemic.  The chain is using robots to take orders, prepare food and bring meals out to diners.  Customers order and pay via touchscreen, then their request is sent to the kitchen where a cooking machine heats up the buns and patties. When it’s ready, a robot ‘waiter’ brings out their takeout bag.   

‘This is the first time I’ve actually seen such robots, so they are really amazing and fun,’ Shin Hyun Soo, an office worker at No Brand in Seoul for the first time, told the AP. 

Human workers add toppings to the burgers and wrap them up in takeout bags before passing them over to yellow-and-black serving robots, which have been compared to Minions. 

Also in Korea, the Italian restaurant chain Mad for Garlic is using serving robots even for sit-down customers. Using 3D space mapping and other technology, the electronic ‘waiter,’ known as Aglio Kim, navigates between tables with up to five orders.  Mad for Garlic manager Lee Young-ho said kids especially like the robots, which can carry up to 66lbs in their trays.

These catering robots look nothing like their human counterparts – in fact they are nothing more than glorified food trolleys so using our thumb rule from the movies, mankind is safe from imminent takeover but clearly  Korean hospitality sector workers’ jobs are not.

And right there is the dichotomy – replacement by stealth.  Remote-controlled robotic waiters and waitresses don’t need to be paid, they don’t go on strike and they don’t spread disease so it’s a sure bet their army is already on the march.

But there may be more redundancies on the way as well.  Have you noticed how AI designers have an inability to use words of more than one syllable?  So ‘robot’ has become ‘bot’ and ‘android’ simply ‘droid?  Well, guys, if you continue to build machines ultimately smarter than yourselves you ‘rons  may find yourself surplus to requirements too – that’s ‘moron’ to us polysyllabic humans”!

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