A misunderstanding over succession has ensued among three royal families in Traditional Authority (T/A) Nthalire chieftaincy following the death of the office holder Rabson Capasi Kawonga on August 14 this year.
The Chikunguweya, Zambwe and Chalaghala families recently contested in an election for the successor, which saw Ackim Kawonga of Zambwe family winning the majority votes.
However, this did not go well with the Chikunguweya family who are challenging the election system and want succession to be rotational among the three families.
According to a letter addressed to Chitipa district commissioner (DC) Grace Chirwa and copied to Paramount Chief Kyungu, the Chikunguweya family say the heir should come from their clan since the last T/A who took over from the Zambwe family came from the Chalaghalas.
‘‘We write to express our concerns over the election of Ackim Kawonga [from Zambwe family] to be T/A Nthalire as the last chief came from Chalaghala family, who took it over from Zambwe family.
“According to the flow of the chieftaincy, currently, it should be from the Chikunguweya family,” reads the letter signed by Centwin Kawonga.
But speaking in a telephone interview yesterday, the chief elect Ackim Kawonga dismissed the arguments, saying the last chief did not come from Chalaghala clan, but from Chikunguweya family.
‘‘What the Chikunguweya family is saying is not true because the last T/A, Rabson Kawonga, came from their clan.’’
‘‘Apart from that, I was chosen following an election in which they also contested. As such, I am surprised with their concerns,’’ he said.
Efforts to talk to Chirwa proved futile as she was away in Mangochi on official duties and her mobile phone could not be reached.n