Paramount Chief Kalonga Gawa Undi of the Chewa people of Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique has called for the revival of the popular growth triangle for the benefit of the three neighbouring countries.
Speaking during this year’s Kulamba traditional ceremony of the Chewa people held at Mkaika — the Chewa headquarters — in Katete on Saturday the chief through Kulamba national organising committee secretary Raphael Phiri said that the revival of talks on the growth triangle would significantly foster regional integration and economic development in the three countries.
“Let me remind the three Governments on the need to have Zambia, Malawi and Mozambique develop the growth triangle operations because of its success story. This will yield a lot of benefits for the people in the three countries,” he said.
Kulamba is a Chewa traditional ceremony in which Chewa chiefs pay homage to their king, Kalonga Gawa Undi.
The chiefs briefed the king on the situation in their chiefdoms, highlighting major issues and developments, adding that the Kulamba ceremony started before the 15th Century.
They also presented gifts to the king.
Zambia President-elect Edgar Lungu attended the event and from Malawi it was Minister of Culture, Grace Chiumia who represented government.
Other notable faces included Member of Parliament for Lilongwe City Centre David Bisnowaty, President advisor, Hetherwick Ntaba, MCP regional chair for the centre Patrick Chilondola, and the Deputy Secretary General for the Malawi Congress Party Elsehower Mkaka who represented MCP President Dr Lazarus Chakwera.
CHEFO chairman Professor Kanyama Phiri led all Chefo members in paying homage to the chief. Chefo gave various gifts to their King.
In 1934, the British colonial authorities, under pressure from the missionaries, banned the Kulamba ceremony.
The missionaries viewed Kulamba as a pagan ritual which promoted immorality and was a barrier to their mission of converting Africans to Christianity.
It is also possible that the colonial authority felt threatened by the Kulamba ceremony as it had the potential of weakening their control over Africans.
The Kulamba ceremony remained banned for 50 years until Kalonga Gawa Undi X (Chibvunga) revived it in 1984.
While in the past each individual chief performed the Kulamba ceremony at their own time, Kulamba is now an event which takes place on the last Saturday of August every year.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :