Zambia’s Inkosi ya Makhosi Mpezeni has endorsed an eight-year-old boy as the rightful heir to the throne of Inkosi Zulu of Mchinji District and has urged family members to proceed and crown him.
The urge comes following an emergence of two factions disputing over who should be the rightful successor to the Inkosi that died in 2010.
One faction claims that the current caretaker should be crowned the Inkosi while the other insists the eight-year-old prince should assume his father’s throne.
But during his recent visit to the area in a bid to strengthening the Ngonis, Inkosi ya Makhosi Mpezeni favoured the crowning of the young prince.
Mpezeni said taking away the kingship from the boy would mean destroying history and dilute the Ngoni culture.
He said being young was not a reason enough to destroy history describing the issue as straightforward and one that should not be a bone of contention among the people.
But some elders in the chiefdom have expressed dissatisfaction with Inkosi ya Makhosi’s decision saying it would be dangerous for a person to be acting for more than 20 years.
“The boy is far too young and it will take a long time for him to mature. Mind you the boy is only eight,” said one of the elders who spoke to Nyasa Times.
The Ngonis in Ntcheu also faced a similar case in 2009 after the death of Inkosi ya Makhosi Gomani IV. The heir to the throne, Mswati Kanjedza Gomani, was at the time also a young boy doing his high school at Kamuzu Academy.
And during the period he was away Regent Maliki, a sister to the deceased, took care of the affairs of the chieftaincy until August 2012 when the rightful heir, Mswati, was crowned at the age of 17 at the Gomani’s headquarters in Lizulu, Ntcheu.