The controversy surrounding the appointment and installation of Chief Mwanachingwala of Mazabuka district has just become hotter.
Last week, the High Court in Lusaka cancelled a dubious consent judgment in which, Vinwell Tandaala Malambo (In photo), one of the contenders to the throne wanted to impose himself as chief Mwanachingwala.
Five people are currently involved in a bitter dispute to succeed Charles Malambo (Chief Mwanachingwala, who died in July 2020.
Like in all Tonga chiefdoms, succession to the Mwanachingwala throne is matrilineal, that is, the children of the sitting male chief have n
o claim to the throne when he dies. It is the sister’s children who take over.
Traditionalists say the Late Charles Malambo was also an imposter as he was only given instruments of power as care-taker to the real chief, Jackson Mweene, who was then a child. Charles Malambo refused to hand over power until his death even when the right chief was available. Now that Malambo is dead, there is a problem. Jackson Mweene, the original chief wants his chiefdom back. On the other hand, late Charles Malambo’s brother has imposed himself as chief Mwanachingwala on the basis that ‘if my brother was chief, I am entitled to succeed him’. To add to the drama, Charles Malambo’s son says he, and not his uncle, is the one who should succeed his father. It doesn’t work like that.
Another person called Richard Chizuma says he is the rightful heir and claims that on August 19, 2020, a meeting was convened at the old palace in Mazabuka and all royal clan members and other interested parties and some government officials were present where he was chosen as the next chief.
When Charles Malambo died, traditionalists sat and resolved that the Kingdom reverts to the original owner Jackson Mweene, but due to resistance from Malambo’s family, the installation could not take place.
This forced Mweene to sue the ba Chindu Clan Council of Mwanachingwala chiefdom. He wanted the court to order the council to implement its resolution and install him as chief.
Jackson Mweene sued Elina Cheemauna as leader of ba Chindu clan, Joshua Ng’andu as chairperson of the ba Chindu clan council, Field Mumba as chairperson of Mwanachingwa traditional council, Hamanzila Mweemba as secretary of Mwanachingwa traditional council, Banji Malambo as the executor of the will of the estate of the late Charles Malambo, as defendants in the matter.
According to his statement of claim, Mweene said he was a matrilineal member of the royal family of ba Chindu clan and the right heir to the throne of chief Mwanachingwala in line with the family tree.
He explained that chief Mwanachingwala, Charles Malambo, who was appointed as a caretaker, died on July 20, 2020 and the former was now the only person entitled to be appointed to the throne as chief Mwanachingwala.
He explained that he could not be appointed as chief Mwanachingwala when the late Malambo was appointed as a caretaker chief because he was still a minor and attending school.
This matter is still in court. The judge has not yet made a judgment. While others are waiting for the court to finish this matter, Vinwell Tandaala Malambo, who is just known as ‘Pinalo’
gathered a group of his supporters, went to the Lusaka High Court, tricked a different judge into signing a consent judgment. This was done without the knowledge of Jackson Mweene who took the matter to court first. `The judge hearing the first matter was also not aware. What lawyers can do.
Using the dubious consent judgment, Vinwell Tandaala Malambo majestically and with much pomp drove into the chiefdom with his supporters proclaiming his victory that he is now finally recognised as chief Mwanachingwala.
But the reign was short-lived. A few days later, Jackson Mweene and other contenders convinced the High Court that the judgment which Vinwell Tandaala Malambo obtained was procured by fraud and tricks and was meant to embarrass the High Court because it was obtained secretly while the first matter is still pending.
See attached documents.