‘Don’t meddle in chiefs’ affairs’

Chinhoyi Bureau
Chief Zvimba has blasted Government officials who try to influence the selection of traditional leaders, saying established traditional processes should be be followed.

Speaking at the installation of Headman Dununu, Raphael Zvikaramba Devera recently, Chief Zvimba said Government officials including politicians “come and go” while tradition re- mains.

Mr Devera took over as Headman Dununu from Matthew Matare who acted for 17 years following the death of Munhu- wani Matare.

“We can’t have a situation where selection and installation of a chief or headman takes up to 17 years simply because officials have their preferred candidate to occupy a position. This is not politics. We follow traditions which cannot be changed,” fumed Chief Zvimba, Mr Stanley Mhondoro.

He said the office of the district administrator, as an extension of the then Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing, was meant to facilitate the process rather than seek to subvert it by having people outside the line of chieftainship being catapulted to the position, resulting in protracted battles.

Chief Zvimba said traditional leaders had a duty to foster development in the areas they superintended over, warning the honour bestowed on chiefs should not be used to promote personal interests.

“Being a traditional leader is not a business or a fortune-seeking venture where we end up hearing that people are being asked to pay certain fines and contributions that are not prescribed by law under the Traditional Leaders Act.

“The same person you want to take from is also struggling to make ends meet. You do not want to compound their sorrows,” said Chief Zvimba.

The acting district administrator for Zvimba, Mr Emmanual Chitombo, said traditional leaders should be well versed with the Act that controls them so they can judiciously discharge their duties.

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