The High Court in Lilongwe Friday ruled that the families of the chieftaincy of the Lambyas in Chitipa district must follow right procedures in appointing a new Chief Mwaulambia, and has since ordered that the current chief is invalid.
The present chief, Godwin Officer Nyondo, was appointed Chief Mwaulambia amid controversies about five years ago.
The chieftaincy, according to the Lambyas, is supposed to rotate among the families of the Bimbes and the Samphalas.
Paramount Chief Kyungu, Traditional Authority Kameme and former parliamentarian for Chitipa North West Nick Masebo are said to have contravened tradition by appointing Officer Nyondo as the rightful heir to the throne after the death of Redson Nyondo—Mwaulambia IV.
“The thing is that the two families were supposed to come together so that a consensus appoints a new chief, but the decision was rushed by our colleagues,” said a member of the Bimbe family who did not want to be mentioned.
The Bimbes, who submitted the name of their son Watson Nyondo, have been contesting the issue in the courts since 2014.
And in his ruling, Judge Charles Mkandawire, while nullifying the chieftaincy of Officer Nyondo, gave the two families 30 days to appoint a new Chief Mwaulambia.
Mkandawire also warned Paramount Chief Kyungu and others not to interfere in the family matters of the Nyondos.
“There is no phrase in the Chiefs Act which gives [Paramount Chief] Kyungu powers to head Chitipa and Karonga,” said Mkandawire.
Chieftaincy wrangles are rife in the country, the recent being another involving that of Chief Chekucheku of Neno where family members of one family shut down the District Commissioner’s (DC) offices to force powers-that-be to appoint their son as heir to the throne.
But Kyungu has rubbished the court’s ruling and told Zodiak Radio Saturday morning that the court had no “right” to interfere with his chieftaincy.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :