The Lwiindi Ceremony

The handover of the ITC was followed on 29 July by the traditional Lwiindi ceremony, a rich cultural practice which saw the gathering of seven Chiefs of the Valley – Chief Mukuni, Chief Mwemba, Chief Nyawa, Chief Chipepo, Chief Chikanta, Chief Simaamba and Chief Sinazongwe as the host. The occasion and date of the ceremony relates to thanksgiving for a good harvest and was timed to coincide with the opening of the ITC. Regrettably it also coincided with an important meeting of Zimbabwean Chiefs in Kariba, and therefore Chief Siachilaba could not accept the Zambian invitation.

The occasion was also graced by the Permanent Secretary of Southern Province Mr Darius Hakayobe, the District Commissioner for Sinazongwe Mr L.M. Apuleni and by Ms Elizabeth Colson, famous anthropologist who spent several decades of her life living in the Gwembe Valley among the BaTonga of Zambia. Ms Colson is still a leading researcher on Tonga Culture and the social consequences of their forced relocation by the building of Kariba dam. Tonga.Online is very honoured that Ms Colson took up the invitation to join the projects advisory board.

Although it was not possible to transport the whole of Simonga cultural group who had been invited to perform and celebrate the occasion, they were represented by Simonga chairperson, Peter Mungombe, leader Sialwiindi Munkuli, musician Mbobola Munkuli, and two female members, Margaret Mombe and Pouline Munkuli.

Chief Sinazongwe performed the traditional appeasement of the great sprits of his Chiefdom with his followers at the Malende site, the grave yard of the Chieftancy family. There was a big crowd gathering at the sacred place where the Chief warned against any cutting of trees or grass. After all the rituals, some traditional beer was shared among the groups of people and individuals present. Ngoma buntibe and other traditional music and dance like Chilimba/Makuntu, Chinyaanya and Chinganda continued and were the powerful sounds and entertainment of the day.

A special thanks to Chief Sinazongwe and Mr and Mrs Savious Miyanda for the valuable support of ICT4D in Sinazongwe. TWALUMBA LOKO!

Tonga.Online seeks the continued support of both the relevant Zimbabwean and Zambian Government Departments and all other stakeholders, in order to offer access to communication and information technology on both sides of the Zambezi/Gwembe Valley.

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