Village headman

The Dalai Lama teaches us that the root of all problems – the real enemy – include anger, attachment, jealousy, hatred…
A week ago, Dr M’membe had his installation as headman revoked by the Bemba Royal Establishment on account of being active politically.
A few days later, the ruling Patriotic Front picked headman Zacks Mwachilele as its candidate for the July 30 Katuba Constituency by-election.
“As with every other democratic process, there can only be one candidate at any given time. I must emphasise here that we had a huge task arriving at one candidate because the names we received were all refined and members who could win us Katuba on any given day,” said PF secretary general Davies Mwila. “We had to arrive at one name and our candidate is Mr Zacks P. Mwachilele. I want to appeal to all aspiring candidates to embrace Mr Mwachilele’s candidature, adopt a ward to work in during these campaigns and the party shall give you the support…Let us all work towards our victory. Victory is certain in Katuba.”
Well said, well done.
And we have no problem with the candidate himself and the PF’s prerogative – choice.
We are simply wondering what caused the Bemba Royal Establishment revoke Dr Fred M’membe’s installation as headman and citing the issue of him being politically active.
The Ichinga Royal Establishment of Nkula Chiefdom of Chinsali and Shiwang’andu districts in Muchinga Province announced it had with immediate effect revoked the appointment of Fred Mmembe as Headman of Mwika village.
It also warned the public and politicians not to use the name of Senior Chief Nkula and the establishment to gain political popularity.
It’s really very strange that in Bembaland, a headman should be apolitical but elsewhere they can seek an elective office.
We are still asking ourselves on the wisdom surrounding the decision to dethrone Dr M’membe.
We restate our position that political elements from within the PF are behind the revocation, first among them home affairs minister and Shiwang’andu member of parliament Stephen Kampyongo.
As in the earlier editorial, we say: We were wondering how the Bemba Royal Establishment that never issued any statement about the installation of Dr M’membe as Mwika Mukulu was now issuing press statements revoking it. It was not making sense; it left things hanging!
But is this the way Bemba village headmen are removed? But who appoints Bemba village headmen in the first place? Is it not the concerned families?
We believe Dr M’membe was made Mwika Mukulu by his family. Was his family consulted or heard in his removal?
But above all, what Bemba royal tradition has Dr M’membe and his family violated? Which Bemba royal tradition has Dr M’membe and his family violated by him being involved in politics? Which Bemba royal tradition stops a village headman to participate in politics? Wasn’t the Chitimukulu at one time a member of the central committee of UNIP? Did he violate a Bemba royal tradition? If he did, why wasn’t his appointment as Chitimukulu revoked by the Bemba Royal Establishment?
It’s very clear that there is cheap and corrupt politics being played here.
Our advice to Dr M’membe is that the nation is far bigger than his village – Mwika Royal Village. And he should let the Kampyongos have their way on that and focus on bigger national issues. His Mwika Royal Village will be better off in a well governed nation. Let him rise above village politics and concentrate on liberating Zambia from the yoke of poverty, disease and ignorance. Even if it is humility and wanting to serve the least of one’s brothers and sisters, Dr M’membe should leave low calibre politics to the primitive minds of the Kampyongo type.
It is very clear that all this is aimed at embarrassing him politically and reducing his popularity. But such desperate actions, as we have stated before, boomerang. They achieve the opposite. The Zambian people are not foolish, they can see and understand what is going on. And they have a high sense of justice and fairness. They can see and judge as to who between Dr M’membe and his adversaries is betraying Bemba traditions and public trust!
We are made to believe that the Bemba royal system is anchored on a lot of long standing traditions of wisdom and fairness and it will in the long run not allow itself to be prostituted by cheap and empty politicians of the likes of Kampyongo. We believe the Bemba royal system has immense capacity for self-correction.
And there’s need to meditate on the truth.
Again as the Dalai Lama says, “If we can realise and meditate on ultimate truth, it will cleanse our impurities of mind and thus eradicate the sense of discrimination.”

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