The opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) structures in Matabeleland North have announced that their members will hold a solidarity rally for Chief Ndiweni on the 1st of February.
Stung by criticism from the outspoken Chief Felix Nhlanhlayamangwe Ndiweni of Ntabazinduna, President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government responded by removing him from office.
The government was hoping to take advantage of a long running family dispute over the Ndiweni chieftainship. However, the family spokesperson, Bancinyane Ndiweni has already maintained that the family settled for the ‘ousted chief’ as their substantive traditional leader.
“As far as the family is concerned, Felix Nhlanhlayamangwe Ndiweni is our chief. Nothing has changed,” Bancinyane was quoted saying. Ndiweni’s lawyers are challenging the matter in court.
Speaking to Nehanda Radio, Mhlonipheki Ncube, the Matabeleland North provincial spokesman for the MDC, said the latest rally; “came as a special request from the community of Ntabazinduna.”
“We as MDC Matabeleland North take the persécution of the chief and the purported removal from the Khayisa Chieftainship as a direct attack on the culture, traditions, customs and norms of the people of Matabeleland hence a call for stiff resistance among our people across all political divide.
“We therefore call upon all thé people of Matebeleland to throng Ntabazinduna on the first of February to show unity of purpose against this ZANU PF failed regime that has plunged the country into economic abyss and put our Nation among failed states.
“MDC Matabeleland North will not rest when the identity of the people of Mthwakazi is under threat. The torture of the People’s Chief is viewed by our people as an attack on their identity traced back to the times of King Mzilikazi. Any attempt to erase such historic ties will be stiffly resisted and ZANU PF stand warned.
“We encourage our people to wear TRADITIONAL ATTIRE in tandem with Mthwakazi culture during the day and show the World that MDC solidly stand with the people’s Chief,” Ncube said.