By Vincent Khonje
Kasungu, January 26, Mana: Late Senior Chief Kaluluma of Kasungu has been described as dedicated, peace loving and full of wisdom.
The late Senior Chief passed on early hours of Saturday at Likuni Mission Hospital in Lilongwe.
Born, Oscar Gladson Kaluluma Phiri on 1 January 1927, late Senior Chief Kaluluma has been labeled by those who took turns in paying their tribute to him as a good example of a traditional leader.
Giving her eulogy Deputy Minister of Local Government, Halima Daudi, who represented President Lazarus Chakwera, described the late Senior Chief Kaluluma as an example to emulate by other chiefs in the district.
Daudi said the late chief was very dedicated in executing his duties as a traditional leader.
She said Government is saddened to have lost such an advisor.
“It is sad that we have lost Senior Chief Kaluluma who was very important to the ministry as an advisor on matters of chieftainship and development,” said Daudi.
However, the minister gave a word of caution to the family on how it should move forward saying there should not be any wrangles.
“The demise of Senior Chief Kaluluma will be in the minds of the people for a very long time and will be missed by the people of Kasungu.
“To the family let me advise you that after the mourning period, with love and unity, sit down and choose someone who should continue the good work left by the late chief,” said Daudi.
She added that issues of succession are run by the royal family and those choosing a successor are aware of what procedures to follow, therefore there should not be disagreements.
“We should not hear that people have taken each other to court over chieftaincy wrangles. Areas that stay too long without a chief suffer a lot,” she said.
Also giving tribute to the late senior chief, Traditional Authority (TA) Mnyanja who represented the bereaved family said they have lost someone who was full of wisdom.
“He was full of advice and used to tell us about what is right or wrong. He always preached peace and unity among us, now our pillar full of wisdom is gone,” said TA Mnyanja.
Member of Parliament (MP) for Kasungu North, Mike Bango, said it was only fitting to celebrate the life of the late senior chief.
“He has been around for 94 years and if we are not thankful then we are wrong. He was all about peace and living in harmony and most of all valued education. His life is worth celebrating,” said Bango.
Late Senior Chief Kaluluma was one of the longest serving chiefs in the country.
Despite this, director of chiefs Charles Makanga said the chief’s record was clean.
Makanga, however, said the ministry will be ready to process the installation of a new chief once the family chooses a successor.
Apart from Senior Chief Mwase Lundazi of Zambia and Kasungu chiefs, there were also TAs Chilooko and Mwansambo of Ntchisi and Nkhotakota respectively.
Late Senior Chief Kaluluma was installed chief in 1960 and was later elevated as TA in 2001 before being honoured with the senior chief accolade in 2007.
A former agriculture extension worker the late chief, who according to the family has died because of old age, is survived by a wife, 13 children, 45 grandchildren and several great grandchildren.
Hundreds with face masks on flocked to Nthembwe headquarters to pay their homage to their late chief amid Covid-19 preventive measures which have restrictions on gatherings to only 50 people.
However, Kasungu District Commissioner, James Kanyangalazi, apologized on the broken protocol saying it was difficult to restrict people to mourn their chief.