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Breaking News - 5th December 2018

CLARIFICATION ON MATTERS RAISED BY INTERESTED COMMENTS ON SOCIAL MEDIA CONCERNING CHEKE CHA MBUNDA

By Courtesy of Cheke Cha Mbunda Cultural and Writers Association on 05th December 2018.

 
We take this opportunity to thank especially Mwata Nyundu and others that have raised cardinal issues concerning our Association Cheke Cha Mbunda seeking clarification and others commenting ignorantly respectively on social media.

Thanks for your patience in waiting for our responce. We would also like to thank Mwata Katongo Biyela and others for their interest in the Mbunda affairs and continued attempts to bring out Cheke Cha Mbunda views accurately. That is only possible we presume, by their interest to search, read and follow our past postings. We also hear Katongo Biyela that his interest in commenting is to expose those that are misleading the public. We therefore invite you all to expose any falsehood you might discover in our Clarification Report that would tend to mislead the public. We acknowledge that all the comments monitored so far are not coming from our members, but acknowledge the support you are rendering to have your views as Mbundas heard.

Finally we also want to pay tribute to our current National Chairperson Claire Limbwambwa for her guidance as we touch policy matters of Cheke Cha Mbunda, our beloved Association.

We will itemise the issues raised in the comments numerically and respond below them as follows:

1). Mwata Nyundu: The ten point Mulambwa Chiyengele Treaty partly stipulates that the 2 groupings (Aluyi/Mbunda) will remain allies but each shall independently exercise the right to their culture and way of life and way of living without interference from any of the other end. If am not wrong, way of life also includes installation of chiefs and chiefs affairs. The post stipulated further that, both parties fouled on this treaty which in a manner of speaking, according to the accounts of the post of interest justifies the abrogation of the treaty.

• We will start by reciting the relevant clauses of the Mulambwa/Chiyengele Treaty to your concerns here:

o 4) You are free to continue to teach your people your language and culture; you will not be forced to take our language and culture.

 The Mwene Mundu group continued taking their children to Mukanda and teaching them their language. Who stopped the Chiyengele or the Kandala groups to stop Mukanda ceremony? Was it the Aluyi? No. The catch here is that the two groups fell to the Aluyi strategy of giving them Aluyi Princesses to marry. As a result the two groups both became one leg in Aluyi and the other Mbunda. The consequence of that is that they also became Aluyi Princes and Princesses and that is how they continue to be recommended to the Government for recognition because of being from the Aluyi royal blood according to the Chief’s Act, in Western Province, leaving out all the other Mbunda chiefs including Mwene Mundu who migrated first. Up to now they correctly call Chiyengele Nyumbu as their son.

 Therefore the Chiyengele group is responsible for abrogating that treaty and Aluyi took advantage in safeguarding their land from the immigrants and shelved it, if it were a document but in reality both forgot about it. As a result they ended up being called Mbunda Shamuka for abrogating their culture.

o 5) There shall never be an Aluyi person who enslaves a Mbunda and no Mbunda shall enslave an Aluyi.
o 6) You are not forced to live on the Barotse plain but free to live in the forests.
o 7) You are free to cultivate cassava, yams and millet in the multitude that you wish.
o 8 In military and political matters you should be allied with the Aluyi.
o 9) Never fight among one another, but love one another.
o 10) Finally, respect chieftainship and the elders.

Your second part of the concern suggests that “way of life also includes installation of chiefs and chiefs affairs”.

 To the contrary, be reminded that, the Treaty was neither negotiated for nor a written and signed document, it was verbal and therefore the treaty was not absolute.

 Check ‘point 10’, “respect of chieftainship and elders” Chiyengele was being told to respect Litunga and his Chiefs, which meant that Mbundas would remain under the authority of the Litunga.

2). Mwata Nyundu: Now, with regards to the recent happenings in Mongu, may I know if Cheke Cha Mbunda Cultural and Writers Association are of the view that the proclaimed ten point agreement is outdated and should no longer be sort to be restored. If not so, in line with this valid mutual agreement, may I be enlightened as of when and under circumstances did the Litunga acquire direct jurisdiction over Mbunda chieftainship affairs without abrogating it.

• According to the final point No. 10, the Litungaship never relinquished its authority inorder to acquire direct jurisdiction over Mbunda chieftainship affairs which you suggest to be tantamount to abrogation of the treaty. As someone commented in one of the comments, Point No. 10 of the treaty clearly gave Chiyengele his limitations in governance. In other words he was still under direct control of the Litunga, his chiefs and the elders. It is only logical that when you accomodate a visitor in your home by giving him one of the bedrooms, it does not imply that you have religuished your overall authority on that bedroom but give him conditions to behave or live according to your management of the house.

• Cheke Cha Mbunda position has not changed since the last submission on this issue. We believes that this mutual agreement could be resuscitated diplomatically through round table negotiations.

• That is the reason Cheke Cha Mbunda brought it up from the shelves for the first time as a negotiating basis for Mbunda grievances in the ‘Rodger Chongwe Commission of Enquiry on Mongu violence’ and the Barotse national Council (BNC) all of the year 2012.

3). Mwata Nyundu: "By these reforms, what is meant was that not every Mbunda henceforth was considered a real member who could effect any major changes to the objectives and the likes of this organization until he/she paid a membership fee. However, while the org. held on to its initial objectives, while the general Mbunda populace was denied discretion on vital issues affecting it, despite using its name “Mbunda” (just like royal council) which by implication meant not only registered Mbunda members but every Mbunda. This was a contradiction. You and I will have to agree that the activities (publication of Mbunda literature etc..) of original Cheke somehow affected not only registered members but all Mbunda, thus, am left to believe that every Mbunda had as much right as the registered members to be air their views about the activities and objectives of the writers association. Since they were not writing about their individual biographies but the culture and ways of life of the general Mbunda populace. In other words, every Mbunda became by default a shareholder.

• We will start by giving a brief Cheke Cha Mbunda Profile which highlights the history of its formation to give a correct overview:

“Cheke” means “Glowing Light Out of Darkness".

Therefore Cheke Cha Mbunda does not mean an association for the Mbundas but 'light of the Mbunda in research and dissemination'.

The Association was borne out of attempts by some concerned Mbunda Speaking people in the 1940s along the line of rail. It formally existed in 1956 as Mwondo under the Chairmanship of Mr. Kalimbwe. Later in the 1960s it was changed to be Mbunda Cultural Writers' Association. It started to produce a magazine called “Kapila kamuthzimba Tako”. In 1981 on 27th September the Association was renamed “Mbanja” this was at a meeting that took place in Monze. Later in the same year on 17th and 18th October, at a meeting that took place at the late Mr. Gabriel Mulyata's house in Lusaka the Association yet again was renamed “Cheke Cultural Writers' Association” and its first Constitution was drafted and endorsed. With the Constitution in place,the same was officially registered in 1982. It started to produce a magazine called “Likalavandhtzi lya Mufuko”.

On 16th August 2007 at a Meeting that took place at the House of Dr. Rosemary Ndonyo, under the Chairmanship of Mr. Ndandula Libingi, the Association yet again changed its name from Cheke Cultural Writers' Association to almost what it was in the 60s to 80s, Cheke Cha Mbunda Cultural and Writers Association. The effecting of these changes with the Registrar of Societies was done on 13th February 2008 and a new certificate issued. This change was necessitated by shift in the Association's vision from just writing about the history to also revive, preserve, promote and protect the Culture and affairs of all the nine chiefs of the seven dialects of the Mbunda Speaking People Group. This entails organising and holding cultural gatherings, to this end execute programmes relating to “Official Representation and Custodian of traditional music, makithi, oracles, myths, oral and written records of the Mbunda People Group.

POLICY
In the pursuit of it's programmes and activities the Association shall at all times conduct its affairs within the framework of its constitution and the Laws and Regulations of the Government of the Republic of Zambia. Admittance to the Association is open to all Mbundas and is conferred through payment of membership fees. The Association is non-political and supports the Government of the day.

OBJECTIVES
1). To revive, preserve, promote and protect from foreign influences, the cultural heritage and traditions of the Mbunda speaking peoples in totality by carrying out research, into the history of the Mbunda and to disseminate such information to the Mbunda people.
2). To provide direction, guidance and promote the participation by the said people group in all such cultural activities throughout Zambia as may be in the interest of the Nation and conducive to the development and enrichment of the Nation's cultural life generally.
3). To be the Official Representative and Custodian of traditional music, makithi, oracles, myths, written and unwritten, records of the Mbunda People Group.

STATEMENT
CCMCWA, currently enjoys support from all nine (9) Mbunda chiefs in Zambia, and give unequivocal respect and support to Traditional Institutions in their respective palaces and chiefdoms. CCMCWA's role in relation to the Mbunda chiefdoms is advisory. Cheke Cha Mbunda drives its authority from its constitution and the AGM as its highest organ. Being an Association and because of the high respect given to the various Chiefdoms, the chiefs have no control over or participate in the day-to-day running or implementation of the Association's policies, objectives and programmes. They thus do not issue directives to the Association's elected office bearers. Consequently, they do not, severally or individually, issue statements or write instructions or requests using Cheke Cha Mbunda stationery. It is a constitutional right of every Mbunda to form any organization of his or her choice, whether political or otherwise to champion his/her objectives. However, it is wrong to use a legally constituted body corporate like Cheke Cha Mbunda which has different objectives to pursue such different aspirations. In this regard Cheke Cha Mbunda disassociates itself from recent pronouncements in the Zambian media regarding establishment of ethnic governance structures purporting to represent the Mbunda people using CCMCW stationery and logo. Establishing ethnic governance structures of all the Mbunda people requires consensus from all the Mbunda chiefs, which, to Cheke Cha Mbunda's knowledge, has not been obtained. Therefore, anyone found speaking for the Cheke Cha Mbunda Cultural and Writers Association apart from the legally elected office bearers, whose names have been duly filed by way of a return with the Registrar of Societies or using stationery will be impersonating Cheke Cha Mbunda and appropriate legal action will be taken by the Association against such a one. It is therefore the obligation of the National Executive Committee (NEC) in Lusaka to re-establish Provincial, District and Branch Committees through membership renewal exercise, which will enable the Association to revive the programmes which were curtailed in 2013.

• Here also is a summary recap of our response to Boister Chikatu’s concerns you refer to: “The association could have been inclusive of all Mbundas from 1956 of its formation to 1981 when its first constitution was introduced, stipulating its rules and regulations and registration according to government laws in 1982. Therefore the Registrar of Societies Act. called for a registered Society to have registered membership. That registration meant it became an autonomous body”.
• Law of the land therefore required that the association maintain a National Executive Committee drawing authority from an Annual General Meeting composed of its paid up members as its final authority.
• Therefore those reforms were not a contradiction as you suggest because an association is more or less a club with objectives for the interest and benefits of a community, which in this case happen to be Mbunda people.
• Notice also from the Cheke Cha Mbunda Profile that research and publication of all Mbunda history book editions were done after the reforms at the Association’s cost and therefore fell within the legal requirements.

4). Mwata Nyundu: In this regard, I lack wisdom to know exactly what transpired and in any way not qualified to tell really what went on behind the doors that led to the formation of the other group but by Common sense and guess work, I want to believe again that, continuous denial to
be heard of some concerned Mbundas and lack of transparency by Cheke Cha Mbunda, might have given birth to the formation of the latter organization (Royal council). I stand to be corrected on this point.

• For above concerns please check and take time to read the Cheke Cha Mbunda full profile as it gives details of what transpired from inception to date and perhaps ultimately touching all your concerns. Check this link: www.mbundakingdom.org/ZProfile.htm

5). Mwata Nyundu: Now as it stands, what am ignorant about is whether Cheke Cha Mbunda at its formation and it’s subsequent 1982 reforms, had the endorsement of all Mbundas preferably through their respective representatives (Chiefs). Since it claims the latter organization is a one man show.

• There is a big difference between Cheke Cha Mbunda Cultural and Writers Association and Mbunda Royal Estamblishment/Mbunda Royal Council formation.
• Cheke Cha Mbunda is as per its name an association or a club though its mandate is to offer service not only to the Mbunda society but world at large through its research to enhance the national and world history.
• Its role as to Mbunda chiefs is advisory through its research.
• Therefore Cheke Cha Mbunda needed no consensus from all Mbundas or their chiefs at formation but had endorsement from all 9 Mbunda chiefs in Zambia and later the Mbunda monarch in Angola after its formation.
• However, Mbunda Royal Establishment and its Council are an ethnic governance structure, thereby affecting the earlier established governance structures and therefore it needed consensus from all Mbunda chiefs and the overall Mbunda monarch before formation.

6). Boister Chikatu (Commenting on Cheke Cha Mbunda Press Statement of 11/01/2011, in addressing Katongo Biyela): Do you remember Cheke Cha Mbunda warning the Linyungandambo group, allow to quote; “We can only say enough is enough, we call upon all Mbunda speaking people in Barotseland to be on ‘Red Alert and check Linyungandambo who have declared war on them and should be prepared”. How prepared are you……….? In case you have never heard about it, the speaker warned as follows: “We refuse to be subjugated by another tribe and we don’t believe in subjugating anyone despite the weaknesses……. We are warning ‘Linyungandambo that any attack on any Mbunda as threated, wll be met with a full scale response… We shall not be cowed by threats from anyone on this planet and repeat that the Mbunda will not be forced out of Barotseland without due and appropriate resistance. We are here to stay”
.
• Above statements should be understood in their right context at the time of issuing them. What happened to invoke such statements?
• The Mbunda community as a whole were threaten by a group called Linyungandambo and not BRE by way of posters in Mongu with deportation back to Angola if they did not support them in their quest for secession.
• It was not Mbundas only threatened but the Litungaship as well, threatening that the palace will be torched.
• Therefore that situation cannot be compared to what is obtaining currently.
• Cheke Cha Mbunda’s approach on the Mbunda grievances in Western Province is diplomatic not confrontational, a round table negotiation on the perceived departure from the way of life and respect they enjoyed for ages.
• That approach was started in the year 2012 but disrupted and hijacked by Chief Chiyengele and the group whose approach is confrontational.

 


 

 

 

 

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