Malawi vice president Saulos Chilima speaking on Saturday at Umhlangano wa Maseko, an annual cultural event to celebrate values and traditions of the Maseko Ngoni in Ntcheu said culture and traditions have potential to unite people of diverse beliefs and backgrounds.
Chilima graced the occasion alongside ministers of Health Peter Kumpalume, Patricia Kaliati (Information) and Grace Chiumia (Sports and Culture).
The 2016 Umhlangano was held at the usual Mkolimbo Village where Inkosi Gomani Chikuse was brutally killed by the British colonial leaders in 1896 and he was buried right there.
The event drew Ngoni representatives from Mozambique and South Africa and locally, other tribal groups such as Lhomwes, Tongas and Chewas were also in attendance.
Patrons were treated to Ngoni foods such as roast meat and traditional beer such as Masese.
Meanwhile, Inkosi Kanduku of Mwanza is the winner of the Inkosi ya Makosi Gomani V Tree-planting award beating eighteen makosi of the Maseko Ngoni under Gomani V.
The initiative was introduced by Inkosi Gomani V in 2015 at the yearly Umhlangano wa Ngoni event in a bid to fight deforestation throughout the Maseko Ngoni teritory.
Gomani declared Kanduku winner of the initiative at the Umhlangano event and the Maseko Ngoni King awarded Kanduku with a cow.
The Maseko Ngoni leader said Kanduku had planted 467, 308 trees during the last tree planting season leading the rest of the makosi and that he deserved the award.
“Looking at the gap between the winner and his runners-up, I have decided to only award the Number 1 for the effort he has shown so that this encourages the rest of the makosi to do better than they did last growing season,” Gomani said.
Runners-up to Kanduku, according to Gomani, were Inkosi Masasa with 290,396 trees; and Inkosi Ganya with 207, 400 trees.
He announced that the coming next season, the initiative would extend to Mozambique’s Inkosi Zimtambira who is also under the Maseko Ngoni leadership.
Inkosi Kanduku was all smiles with the award saying he would encourage his subjects to plant more trees to address the deforestation challenge which he said was heavily affecting his area.
Prior to the main event, the Veep, the ministers and other selected delegates laid wreaths on the resting place of Gomani Chikuse.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :