Innocent Ruwende Senior Reporter
Government is committed to improving the welfare and stature of traditional leaders as they play a crucial role in leading communities and promoting the preservation of the country’s culture, a Cabinet Minister has said.
Speaking at the National Council of Chiefs meeting in Harare yesterday, Rural Development, Promotion and Preservation of National Culture and Heritage Minister Abedinico Ncube said his ministry continued to engage the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development over the procurement of vehicles for chiefs.
“In the past, disbursement of your monthly allowances was erratic and inconsistent. We, therefore, migrated to the Salary Service Bureau for chiefs and headman and mobile money transfers for village heads. May I call upon the Chiefs’ Council to continue to abide by the dictates and confines of the Traditional Leaders Act and the Constitution. As we may all be aware, the Chiefs’ Council mandate is eloquently laid out under Section 38 of the Traditional Leaders Act and Section 283 of the Constitution,” he said.
He called upon chiefs to negotiate boundaries in good faith through the provincial assemblies and the National Chiefs’ Council, so that Government is able to quickly finalise emplacement. Minister Ncube said there was a growing concern over the increase in moral decadence across Zimbabwe and his ministry was aware that culture and social sensitivities had been eroded by globalisation and modernisation.
“Indeed, cases of rape, incest, homosexuality and bestiality have become rampant hence the need for our revered chiefs to make a rapid and holistic intervention to redress the situation,” he said.
“Society looks up to our esteemed chiefs to step up efforts to arrest this moral decay. I am aware that chiefs hold annual biras and cultural festivals within their communities as a way of unifying communities and promoting culture in its diverse forms. These activities foster the identity of our people and cultivate pride in our heritage. I would therefore like to call upon all the tradition leaders to jealously guard and preserve our culture and heritage.”
Zimbabwe Chiefs’ Council president Fortune Charumbira said several issues will be discussed at the indaba including agriculture, chiefs’ welfare and the upcoming elections.
“We are concerned about the social media, which is destroying the moral fabric of the society and not only that it is also bringing up cyber crimes. As we go towards the elections we want to Government to ensure we have peaceful elections. Every political party, which is campaigning, should be regulated to ensure that they do so peacefully. We do not want violence. There should be a code of conduct, which binds everyone who wants to campaign we will approach the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission over that matter,” he said.