Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Kondwani Nankhumwa has said there is nothing fish in the way government has elevated Ngolongoliwa form a mere village head in Thyolo to Senior Chief and now as the paramount chief of the Lhomwe.
In Parliament, Kasungu South East Member of Parliament (MP) Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda and Balaka North MP Lucius Banda queried Minister Nankhumwa on Ngolongoliwa’s rocket ascendency—from village headman to sub-chief (2014), chief (2015), senior chief (2016) and paramount chief (2017)—justified under the customary law and which chiefs vouched for him.
“Mr Speaker sir, its not that we are against chief Ngolongoliwa but we are dumfounded with speed government took to elevate him,” said Kandodo.
According to Kandodo, there are number of chiefs in the country who have stayed for a long period of time without being elevated.
“Imagine, someone being elevated from a junior chief to Paramount Chief within two years while others have been there for more than 20 years. We therefore need explanation,” questioned Kandodo.
While concurring with Kandodo, Balaka north Member of Parliament, Lucius Banda said “in brief the minister of local government should tell us what it takes for a chief to be elevated.”
“If it is hardworking, we should go and tell our chiefs to also work hard so that they should also elevated,” said Banda.
According to Banda, some chiefs thought that they should support the ruling party in everythings in order to be elevated.
Nankhumwa in responses said that all procedures are followed to the letter.
“In the case of Chief Ngolongoliwa, the ministry received a request and an invitation from Lhomwe chiefs that they wanted to have their own paramount chief and we, as a ministry, just facilitated the process,” he said.
Nankhumwa said the same happened before Paramount Chief Kawinga was elevated, saying Yao chiefs wrote the ministry requesting that they should have their own paramount chief.
The newly-enthroned Paramount Chief Ngolongoliwa is now keeper of Mulhako wa Alhomwe “shrine” at Mendulo in Mulanje.
Ngolongoliwa takes over from the late Paramount Chief Mkhumba of Phalombe who died in July 2014 aged 82 after a long illness.
Mkhumba became Senior Chief in 2001 and was elevated to Paramount chief in 2008.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :