PATRICK Chibamba has insisted before the Lusaka High Court that he is still the recognised senior chief Shakumbila of the Sala people of Mumbwa District.
Chibamba has submitted that at no time had he ceased to be senior chief Shakumbila as the purported dethronement did not follow the customary procedures of the Sala people that ought to be followed when dethroning a senior chief.
This is a matter in which Chibamba has sued the newly-appointed chief Shakumbila, Netta Shimwambwa and two others seeking a declaration that the attempt to dethrone him by the defendants is illegal and contrary to the procedure prescribed by the customs and traditions of the Sala people and in breach of rules of natural justice.
Others sued are: Ackson Shibalanga, who said he is senior headman Chipwaya and current chairman of the Shakumbila Royal Establishment and Edgar Mwambula, who is senior headman Mwambula and a senior member of the Shakumbila Royal family.
Chibamba further wants a declaration that he is the current and reigning senior chief Shakumbila and an order of interim prohibitive injunction directed to the defendants to restrain them, their servants or agents from continuing to interfere with the execution of his chiefly duties or his administration of the Shakumbila Chiefdom.
However, in their defence, the three defendants submitted that Chibamba ceased to be senior chief Shakumbila of the Sala people in Mumbwa District on October 11, last year, when he was dethroned on account of gross misconduct.
They added that Chibamba was properly and lawfully removed from the throne for gross misconduct by the Shakumbila Royal Family.
The three also asked the Court not to grant Chibamba an order of interim prohibitive injunction to prevent what he perceives to be further interference with his chieftainship.
But in his reply to defendants’ defence filed in the Lusaka High Court recently, Chibamba argued that at no time had he ceased to be senior chief Shakumbila as the purported dethronement did not follow the customary procedures of the Sala people that ought to be followed when dethroning a senior chief.
Chibamba further argued that the duly recognised and rightfully appointed chairman of the Shakumbila Royal Establishment was Hadson Shimayangwa.
He added that the second defendant, Shibalanga had voluntarily relieved himself of his duties as chairman of the Royal Establishment and as such no longer holds the position to-date.
Chibamba stated that the alleged position of senior headman Mwambula, which the third defendant, Mwambula, purportedly holds was not recognised by him in any way, but he, however, admitted that Mwambula was a member of the royal family.
He submitted that his installation as senior chief was well decided and was also proved as valid by a Supreme Court judgement dated January 4, 2018.
“The plaintiff (Chibamba) will restate that he is still the reigning and duly recognised senior chief Shakumbila to this day as the defendants purported to exercise powers, which they did not possess and acted in disregard of customs and traditions over the removal of a senior chief,” Chibamba stated.
He further stated that the purported selection of Netta as the new senior chief Shakumbila was illegal and against the traditions and customs of the Sala people.
“The plaintiff shall aver that he was never removed from his throne and the actions of the defendants were illegal and a mere attempt to dethrone the plaintiff. The actions of the defendants were a clear interference with the duties of the plaintiff as the defendants exercised powers they did not have. The plaintiff is entitled to all the reliefs sought in the writ of summons and statement of claim,” stated Chibamba.