New traditional chief for Beit Bridge

Newly installed Chief Matibe Khosi Elish Mbedzi, seen during the traditional ceremony marking his official installation as the paramount chief of Beit Bridge East area.


14 November 2011


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Khosi Elish Mbedzi was officially installed as the new Chief Matibe of Beit Bridge East area last Friday. He replaced his father, Chief Chichewo Matibe, who died last year after a short illness.

Khosi Mbedzi is the eldest son in the Matibe family.

The new Chief Matibe was installed at a traditional ceremony held in line with the local Venda (VhaPfumbi) traditions at Makote village outside Beit Bridge. Mbedzi (43) went through full initiation processes for six months, following the formal burial of his father in May this year.

The entire Beit Bridge district has been operating without a chief, following the death of Pariti Sitauze of Beit Bridge West and Chichewo Matibe of Beit Bridge East. The Sitauze clan has, however, been involved in a longstanding dispute over the chieftainship.

The installation was preceded by a traditional ceremony in the local Matopo Hills where the chief spent six months being initiated. Zimbabwe’s Local Government, Urban and Rural Development Minister, Ignatius Chombo, presided over the chief's installation programme. Chombo commended the Venda (Vhapfumbi) tribe for upholding their traditional values, which he said had stood the test of time.

"Traditional leaders are the custodians of the people and they know their priority areas in terms of development, hence the need for a synergy between them and all development partners. I would also want to urge traditional leaders to be pro-active in HIV and Aids intervention programmes," he said.

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Written By

Mashudu Netsianda

Mashudu Netsianda is our correspondent in Beit Bridge, Zimbabwe. He joined us in 2006, writing both local and international stories. He had worked for several Zimbabwean publications, as well as the Times of Swaziland. Mashudu received his training at the School of Mass Communication in Harare.

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