Newly installed chief Nalubamba, Professor King Nalubamba, has submitted in the Lusaka High Court that he is the legitimate successor to the throne of the Nalubamba chieftaincy.
Professor King Nalubamba has stated that all customs, practices and traditions of the Ila people of the Mbeza Royal Establishment were followed during his selection and installation as chief, adding that the voice of the majority prevailed.
In this matter, 13 representatives of the five families out of the eight families that make up the Mbeza Royal Establishment of Chief Nalubamba of the Ila people of Namwala, Southern Province, are challenging the selection and installation of Professor Nalubamba, a University of Zambia (UNZA) Dean in the School of Veterinary Medicine, as the new Chief Nalubamba.
Pawsen Munamooya and 12 others are seeking an order declaring that the selection and installation of professor Nalubamba as successor to the throne of the late Chief Bright Nalubamba, was null and void.
The 13 who have cited Professor Nalubamba, Joseph Mwanambulo and Mukamadede Munamooya as defendants, further want an order declaring that Pawsen Munamooya is the rightful person eligible to ascend to the throne of Chief Nalubamba in accordance with practices and customs of the Ila speaking people of Namwala district.
The 13 plaintiffs stated that Professor Nalubamba is late Chief Bright Nalubamba’s son and thus cannot according to their practices, customs and traditions ascend to the throne because the chieftaincy moves to a different son’s line after the death or otherwise of an incumbent chief.
But Prof Nalubamba and his co-defendants’ in their defence filed by their lawyers KMG Chisanga Advocates, on November 5, this year, have stated that the plaintiffs were not representatives of any of the families that make up the Mbeza Royal Establishment.
They added that the plaintiffs were individual members of the family and represented their own interests.
The three defendants admitted that Prof Nalubamba was the son to late Chief Bright Nalubamba but denied any suggestion that his installation to the throne was improper or inappropriate at all.
They stated that they would show at trial that the installation of Prof Nalubamba was done in due accordance with all customs and traditions of the Mbeza Royal Establishment.
“At trial, the defendants will seek to show that the whole procedure for the identification, selection and installation of the first defendant (Prof Nalubamba) on the throne of Chief Nalubamba was done in due accordance with all practices, customs and traditions of the Ila people of the Mbeza Royal Establishment,” read the defence.
The defendants further stated that the patrilineal system of ascendancy to the Nalubamba throne under the Mbeza Royal Establishment could only open up to the other sons of eligible members when there was no son of the deceased chief who was available and ready to take up the throne.
They added that children of the Mwachisowa family were eligible to ascend to the throne in accordance with the succession pattern by virtue of being children of chiefs.
The defendants stated that the naming and selection of Prof Nalubamba was legitimate as all customs, practices and traditions were followed and that the voice of the majority prevailed.
“In keeping with traditions, the event was witnessed by village headmen from the chiefdom and that the second defendant chaired the meeting while the third defendant was the spirit medium. The defendants will further seek to show that the first defendant was named as successor by one of the installers called Mukwashi in accordance with traditional and cultural customs and practices of the Mbeza Royal Establishment,” read the defence further.
“Save as herein before specifically admitted, the defendants deny each and every allegation outlined in the statement of claim as if the same was therein individually set forth and traversed seriatim.”