Mzimba Heritage Association says the Umthetho Cultural Festival returns next month at Hora Heritage Site in Mzimba District.
The event will take place from August 10 to 12 with the aim of promoting and preserving the Ngoni cultural heritage.
Mzimba Heritage Association secretary Aupson Thole told The Nation that the event will be celebrated under the theme Role of Women in Ngoni Culture.
He said the theme has been subdivided further into two where an indaba will discuss issues of Ngoni marriages and education for boys and girls. The indaba will be held on the first day.
“The indaba has been divided into three groups: the youth, women and men who will discuss issues pertaining to the theme. Resolutions from such discussions will be presented to the chief’s council for adoption,” said Thole.
He said this is in line with United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco) Convention of 2003 which agreed to safeguard intangible cultural heritage.
“We feel we could take part in that by using our festival to look into traditional values that would help in building economic sustainability so that we continue living as Ngonis,” said Thole.
He said the event will also have cultural activities such as traditional dances on the second day. The climax will be on the third day where local and international visitors, including government officials, will be in attendance.
“The 2017 Umthetho will be a meeting point of all Ngonis from East, Southern and Central Africa. Some of these will come from KwaZulu Natal in South Africa, Songea in Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Swaziland,” said Thole.
The festival’s organising committee chairperson Victor Madhlopa said the event will be run with a budget of K30 million. n