Chieftaincy wrangle riles Chikulamayembe


Two families in Rumphi have accused Paramount Chief Chikulamayembe of failing to resolve a chieftaincy wrangle involving the Sub- Traditional Authority (STA) of Salimu Chisovya in the district.

Both families defied Chikulamayembe’s recommendation that Modekemu Mkandawire should act as STA Salimu Chisovya after the death of their brother in 2006.

The development prompted the other family to install their brother Beyllis Mayinga Mkandawire as acting chief, which resulted in two people occupying the position.


In an interview with The Daily Times on Tuesday, Modekemu Mkandawire insisted that he was the rightful heir to the throne.

“Everybody knows that I am the heir to the throne. The Paramount Chief and the District Commissioner (DC) for Rumphi recommended me and they recognise me as the one,” said Mkandawire.

But Mayinga Mkandawire accused Chikulamayembe of favouring Modekemu Mkandawire’s family.


He said Modekemu Mkandawire was only chosen to act as chief as they were still mourning the death of their brother.

“I am the one who is supposed to be STA Salimu Chisovya and we are all surprised with what is happening. The other family was only supposed to act for a short period. I was installed chief last year,” claimed Mayinga Mkandawire.

He said Chikulamayembe does not have the mandate to choose a chief for people because it is the royal family which decides.

He said the Paramount Chief had failed to resolve the matter amicably.

When contacted for comment, Chikulamayembe said he did not want to be involved in unnecessary things.

“This is a very sensitive issue and the matter is no longer in my hands but is in the Office of the President and Cabinet. We are still waiting for the decision which they are going to make,” he said.

Rumphi DC Lusizi Mshlane said the matter would be resolved by the end of this month.

“We are not recognising anyone in the meantime. The problem is that both families are eligible for the chieftaincy and they could have just understood one another. The ball is in their court and we cannot decide for them,” said Mshlane.

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