Minister cautions against succession wrangles
Milenge, 20 March, 2013,ZANIS – Luapula Province Minister Brigadier General Benson Kapaya has advised the royal establishment of the late Chieftainess Sokontwe in Milenge district not to engage in succession wrangles following the death of the chieftainess.
The minister said the death of the Chieftainess should not bring problems or divisions in choosing the successor like in some chiefdoms where people have ended up in courts of law.
He said government does not take pleasure in seeing conflicts among royal family members due to succession misunderstandings.
The minister said this in Milenge district during the burial of the late chieftainess Sokontwe, Mama Mary Chilambe Serenje, who was born in 1910 and ascended to the throne in 1974.
Chieftainess Sokontwe was recognized by the first Republican President Dr. Kenneth Kaunda in 1976.
The minister said it was important that the royal establishment follows the family tree and abide by the traditions and norms that were applicable to the chiefdom for choosing an heir to the throne.
He disclosed that the records of the family tree were available at the offices of the Council Secretary, the District Commissioner, and the Permanent Secretary.
Brig.gen Kapaya further advised that if the right procedure is followed and the succession rituals are done according to the traditions and customs of the chiefdom, it would accelerate the recognition of the next chief or chieftainess by the government .
He said it was Government’s priority to work with Chiefs as important stakeholders and partners in bringing development closer to the people.
Chieftainess Sokontwe died last Friday week after an illness and was put to rest on Monday this week.
And Chieftainess Sokontwe’s granddaughter Florence Chipe disclosed at the Palace this morning that the succession procedures were clear as Senior Chief Milambo of all the Ushi people in the Province had given guidance .
The headmen and indunas responsible for the succession process were advised to confine their choice to the six surviving grandchildren of the late Chieftainess.