3 December 2017

Zambia: Chiefs Condemn Attack On Chief Mweemba's Palace

Chiefs in Southern Province have condemned the petrol bombing of Senior Chief Mweemba with family members while in their sleep at his palace in Kanyemba Village in Sinazongwe District during the early hours of Friday morning.

The traditional ruler is being admitted to Livingstone Central Hospital with two family members while his grandson Mubita Mubita died during the evacuation process.

Chieftainess Mwenda of the Tonga speaking people of Chikankanta District described the act as barbaric and against the traditional custom.

She said such kind of behaviour should never be condoned as it had shown that the intention was aimed at killing the chief.

"That is against our custom, it's actually barbaric, it shows that their intention was meant to kill the chief which was not good.

"This should never be allowed to happen even though they don't like their chief, it's not good to act in such a manner," she said.

Chief Sinanzongwe of the Tonga people of Sinazongwe District expressed disappointment at the behaviour of the people of Mweemba Chiefdom for their action to burn their own chief.

He said the people opposed to reign should have used the proper channels of addressing their grievances than petrol bombing the traditional ruler's palace while he was in sleep.

He appealed to the Police to intensify the security in the area and also take action against the people involved in the act.

"This is a great disappointment how do the people of Mweemba burn their own chief, why should they want to kill their own chief," he said.

Chief Mukobela appealed to the Ministry of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs to ensure they put up adequate security at the Chiefs palaces.

"I am extremely shocked to hear that Senior Chief Mweemba was burnt but why do such a thing to their chief.

"Well I feel there's need for the Ministry of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs to put up adequate security at the chiefs palaces," he said.

The three traditional leaders were among the five representatives of chiefs in Southern Province in the house of chiefs.

And Southern Province Royal Foundation chairperson Chief Chikanta described the incident as a strange phenomenon.

He said even though there were clans opposed to the chief's leadership the best was for the people to dialogue rather resorting to killing.

Since his installation Senior Chief Mweemba has faced a lot of fighting from groups opposed to his leadership which has resulted in some of the people removing the flag from the palace.

Following his installation the chiefdom stayed 20 years without a chief.

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