By Justine Geoffrey Mkweu…
For the love of the culture, for the presentation of the culture, for the love of association, 3rd September has been set for the shining mouth watering Umhlangano in Malawi.
Umhlangano is an annual event for the ngoni’s from countries of Malawi, Tanzania and Mozambique to meet and cerebrate their culture and also to remember their fore fathers.
King Gomani of Malawi’s Ntcheu district said that, he envisioned Umhlangano to be an auspicious heritage where Ngonis of the three countries should share cultural values and beliefs of sleeping spirits of their forefathers.
“The word Umhlangano means coming together of people from different directions, calling it Tsangano is a product of a failed pronunciation of this Zulu word. The event is of great value.
“It restores unity and courage among Ngoni, revamps the eroded cultural beliefs and values such as dances, worshipping ‘inkosi nkulu nkulu’, (God) offering sacrifices to our beloved departed ancestral souls, to give us peace and blessings, ” said Gomani
Most people have wondered why they fly doves on this function, Gomani said that they fly two white doves at this function to symbolise peace; doves are peaceful birds as current Ngonis are peaceful and development conscious.
Gomani further urged every Ngoni to work hard in their fields, at school and their different tasks that bring them butter on the table. When most people think that beer drinking is a routine for Ngoni, Gomani discusses differently.
“Beer drinking must not be done during profitable hours of the day. I ask people to shelve polygamy and womanising to fight the HIV and Aids pandemic,” said Gomani also known as Gumede.
As for the reason why the most wanted event by Ngoni’s is held in at Nkolimbo, one of the Impis said its because one of their brave kings was brutally murdered by the British there.
“Chikuse the brave king, strongly criticised British brutality on Ngonis, he was tied to a tree, gruesomely shot in 1891, between Dombole and Chiole close to grounds of Gongolo at Nkolimbo Village, Inkosi Kwataine in Ntcheu: this is the supreme reason Umhlangano is held at Nkolimbo, ” said Padambo
And Ziphondo who is another Impi said the site is a blessing and historical hence performing dances, such as ligubo and cattle slaughtering close Chikuse’s monumental tombstone marks the peak of the whole function.
“This is a holy sacrifice in respect of his soul. The bull is speared by cultural combatants once on the forehead, only the brave can have a glance on this process,” says Ziphondo.
Gomani and his Impis said they have alot to say that will happen during the event and they just urged everyone in Malawi and outside Malawi to mark 3 September and rush to Ntcheu district to see for themselves.
The Gomani royal family, traces its roots to the royal hierarchy of Ngacamane Maseko, who had succeeded King Mcamane Maseko 1, who ruled in parts of South Africa and Swaziland.
Under the help of Amakhosi (T/As) and Impis, Gomani reigns from Angonia District to other parts of Mozambique, Tanzania and Malawi, in Ntcheu, Dedza, Lilongwe at Msinja, Dowa, Salima, Mangochi, Balaka, Neno, Mwanza, Blantyre, Chiradzulu, Zomba and Thyolo.