Acting Paramount Chief Chikulamayembe challenges heir nomination process


By Manasseh Nyirenda

Acting Paramount Chief Chikulamayembe of Rumphi, Mtima Gondwe has questioned the nomination process of an heir to the throne of Paramount Chief Chikulamayembe which took place on Wednesday in Rumphi.

The heir nomination indaba constituting of 10 members of the Royal family settled on Joseph Bongololo Gondwe as an heir to the throne.
In a letter addressed to Group Village Head (GVH), Chikalamba Gondwe, the chief observed that the process which led to the nomination of his opponent was grossly flawed.

In the letter which Malawi News Agency (Mana) has seen, Gondwe lists a number of grounds on which has based his objection.
“There was no observer. There was no mediator; you were representing Joseph Bongololo Gondwe as such you were not supposed to preside over this activity.

“You need to explain the inclusion of Chikulamasinda, Denis Gondwe, Stowel Gondwe, Chikalamba Gondwe and culturally, we do not vote a chieftaincy candidate,” the letter reads part.
In a telephone interview, Mtima Gondwe told Mana that he does not want to comment on the issue at the moment, but referred the reporter to his official spokesperson, GVH Hunga Gondwe.

When contacted, he said the acting paramount chiefs camp was still waiting for the normal election process.

“There was a letter from Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development advising the two factions to sit down and resolve the issues. On the nomination day there was supposed for the presence of representative from the office of the Attorney General, Ministry of Local Government lawyers for both parties, District Commissioner (DC) for Rumphi as observers.

“What happened was centrally to the instructions. We are still waiting for the normal programme. After the meeting of the royal family failed, the DC informed us that the government is involving the clergy through Bishop Mtumbuka, Rev. Munthali and Rev. Tembo of Mzuzu, but did not make it due to other engagements. What happened yesterday, to us is uncalled for and not in line with our customs,” Hunga Gondwe claimed.

He confirmed that it was Joseph Bongololo Gondwe who was nominated, but describe the nomination process as abnormal.
Hunga Gondwe said at the moment they are not considering going to court, but rather hoping for fair and transparent re-nomination process.
GVH Chikalamba Gondwe told Mana after the nomination process that the process was transparent and followed what they were required to do.

DC for Rumphi, Fredric Movete confirmed receipt of a nominee for the Chikulamayembe throne.

Malawi Exclusive

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