A wrangle over chieftaincy in Chipeni 2 Village, T/A M’bang’ombe in Lilongwe, Wednesday left 37-year-old man dead and over five others severely injured, police have confirmed.
The police have identified the deceased as Katani Likisoni of the said village and T/A in Lilongwe.
According to Kamuzu International Airport (KIA) Police spokesperson, Sapulain Chitonde Lee, the wrangle ensued following T/A M’bang’ombe’s arrangement to elevate someone from the village to Village Headman Chipeni 2 when he, the T/A, had already elevated one, Frank Chigonthi, to the same position on July 18 this year.
“Frank Chigonthi obtained an injunction from the DC’s office to stop the arrangement and he served it to the T/A, police and the other family where the T/A was to elevate the Village Headman from,” explained Chitonde Lee.
“But the other family defied the injunction and set the date for the elevation of their relation to Village Headman Chipeni 2, inviting the T/A to grace the occasion.”
When Likisoni intervened together with his relations from the ‘legitimate’ Village Headman Chipeni 2, the opponent family members severely beat him alongside his relations, according to Chitonde Lee.
The brawl was immediately reported to Lumbadzi Police who rushed to the scene only to find Likisoni severely mutilated, lying in a pool of his own blood.
“It was a sorry sight,” explained Chitonde Lee. “We rushed him to Lumbadzi Health Centre but he was further referred to Kamuzu Central Hospital where he was pronounced dead.
“Postmortem of the body indicated that Likisoni had died of severe head injuries.”
Lilongwe District Council Director for Administration, Peter Dokali, admitted to have received a complaint on the matter and he wrote a letter to stop the process.
“I wrote them a letter to stop the process until we looked into it but the next thing I heard was this tragedy,” explained Dokali, who said it had become a trend that most traditional authorities do not comply to such directives where situations like this occur.
But T/A M’bang’ombe distanced himself from the incident saying he complied with the district council’s directive and stopped the whole process.
He added that the whole issue was misunderstood in the first place because the chieftaincy he was going to elevate had nothing to do with the one he elevated in July, the Chigonthi one.
“The issue is that the elevation I conducted in July was for Chipeni and not Chipeni 2,” said T/A M’bang’ombe. “Chipeni 2 is a long time chieftaincy and it has its own register.
“The problem is that the Chipeni I elevated in July this year has been identifying himself as Chipeni 2 when, in actual sense, I had elevated him as just Chipeni.”
More than five people who were severely wounded in the fracas were still receiving treatment at
M’bang’ombe Health Centre, as of Saturday.
Lumbadzi police has since arrested one suspect but investigations are still under way and more suspects are expected to be nabbed, according to Chitonde Lee.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :