Cletus Mushanawani Mash Central Bureau
CHIEF Nembire and Chief Matsiwo were yesterday elected to represent traditional leaders from Mashonaland Central in the Senate.
The elections, which were held at Kuvaka House in Bindura, were presided over by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission.
In interviews after the elections, Chief Nembire and Chief Matsiwo, pledged to work hard to improve the welfare of their peers in the province.
Chief Nembire said the welfare of traditional leaders was their top priority.
“We want to commend Government for ensuring that our allowances are paid on time through the Salary Services Bureau like civil servants and pensioners.
“We also want to ensure that chiefs lead decent lives for them to get the respect they deserve from their subjects. Even in the event of death, traditional leaders deserve a decent send-off and we will ensure that this is achieved during our tenure in Senate,” he said.
Chief Nembire said they would also push for the early appointment of substantive chiefs as it was taking long to install a new chief.
“The acting time for a chief should be reduced. Some have been acting for the past 10 years and this create unnecessary acrimony among family members. Families are being divided because of the succession issue and we are saying a substantive chief should be installed in the shortest possible time.
“We should be the custodian of our cultures and one cannot fully discharge his or her duties in an acting capacity. In short, we will be advocating for the Operation Restore Culture. A country that does not set norms and values is doomed.
“We cannot allow a free for all situation to prevail. Our children should be proud to sing our national anthem, than to wait for foreign nationals like Chinese to lead us in singing the song of our beautiful nation,” he said.
Chief Nembire called for the conducting of a traditional bira to inform ancestors that the war of liberation was over in Zimbabwe.
“It is now 38 years after independence, but no traditional bira was done to appease the spirits of those who perished during the liberation struggle. We never informed the spirits of the land that guided us during the liberation struggle that we had laid down arms. A lot of squabbling in the country is being experienced because of our failure to perform these important rituals.”
Chief Matsiwo called on Government to assist them in setting up proper court structures in their respective areas.
He also called for an upward variation of the chiefs’ allowances.
Thirteen chiefs participated in the elections.