THE Bemba on New Year’s Day proved their superiority yet again over their traditional rivals, the Ngoni, trouncing them in the annual Tribal Cousins Golf Championship in Ndola and seal a record 14th title.
Despite some afternoon drizzles at Ndola Golf Club, the Bemba were undeterred in their resolve to keep their precious trophy when they scored a runaway 428 points against 352 for the Ngoni, who have only won the title twice.
While the scores were generally bad due to the soggy conditions on the course after several days of heavy rains, the Bemba golfers did just enough to retain the championship.
Even in the Individual Stableford, Nkrumah Musonda, a Bemba, emerged champion after winning a two-way count back over teammate, Kelvin Chibuye following a tie on 36 points.
Yogesh Desai was third after winning a three-way count back over Jack Ngulube and H. Mofya who had tied with him on 34 points.
Ngoni chairperson, Welani Chilengwe can at least claim some victory over his rival, Kangwa Mukwikile after finishing ahead of him in the individual category.
Some of the golfers who picked up some individual accolades include Zambia Ladies Golf Union president, Moono Mwila, Sports Council of Zambia vice-chairperson, Emmanuel Katebe, Football Association of Zambia committee member, Pivoty Simwanza and former Zambia Golf Union president, Percy Ng’andwe.
The unifying spirit exhibited by the two ‘warring’ groups forced Africa Golf Confederation (AGC) president, Joe Malanji to donate K1,000 each to the traditional leaders of both camps, Paramount Chief Chitimukulu for the Bemba and Paramount Chief Mpezeni of the Ngoni.
Malanji also donated 1,000 Paribas exercise books worth K10, 000 to be shared equally by Mungwi and Chizongwe Schools in the Northern and Eastern Provinces, respectively.
The AGC president said events like the Tribal Cousins Golf Championship played a crucial role in uniting the nation and also encouraged the preserving of the rich Zambian culture.
He appealed to the Bemba and Ngoni to consider inviting their traditional leaders to the next championship and spice up the event.
Copperbelt Permanent Secretary, Stanford Msichili, who was guest of honour, said Government was encouraged by the spirit behind the staging the Bemba versus Ngoni golf tournament.
Msichili said such events helped in uniting people and eliminates the differences which the forefathers could have encountered.
He challenged more Zambian tribes to emulate the gesture by the Bemba and Ngoni by staging other tribal cousin golf competitions.
And his victory speech, Mukwikile congratulated his Bemba team for ‘preserving’ the tradition of winning the annual event, saying it was their right to beat the Ngoni.
In conceding defeat, Chilengwe said the Ngoni would never give up until they wrestle the trophy from the Bemba and promised to mobilize more ‘warriors’ for next year’s event.
Ndola Golf Club captain, Humphrey Mutambo said the club was honoured to be the traditional hosts for the event
Times of Zambia