I witnessed a funeral ceremony of one rich Tonga old man from Chief Mwanachingwala in Mazabuka.
It was a marvel, full of running and dust. I have never witnessed a sea of people at a funeral like that. It was a busy day for the herds boys who were running with animals with Spears and guns. Women were also not left out in the race against cattle.
Tongas like cattle. Actually, we say KONABULA MUKOWA KOOMBE KO KWETE, meaning a man is better off without relatives but owning cattle.
It is an open cheque. We sell animals (cattle), when we want to sort out problems.
The old man who died was said to have had over 2000 heads of cattle to his name. 110 cows were slaughtered in his honor at the funeral.
I held my Chin in utter shock at how the animals were being gunned down.
I wanted to know what else the dead man had. I was told he only had cattle and a number of children.
Learn from the Masai people of Kenya my people. The Masai had more animals than pasture could hold.
The draught also dried all their reliable water sources and animals died in numbers.
You can say we had Corridor disease but if we can’t learn from the misfortune that befell us, then we shall perish.
Keeping 2000 cows just for prestige is not wise enough. That is putting all the eggs in one busket.
What if you sell 800 and build houses in upper market residential areas, buy shares in companies like the Masais did in Kenya and invested in the lucrative mobile phone companies or the banking sector?
I hear the Batswanas who are also cattle headers most of them own shares in big companies.
Can’t the Tongas do the same? Pasture is running out and your chiefs are selling land to investors like Tomatoes. You have taken alot of your children to school who can help you in another source of income to back your cattle Business.
Your animals are not ensured like our fellow farmers, the whites.
You are not rich untill you develop many streams of income and your cattle can jump start you rich Tonga.
If you can’t change, change will change you.
THINK BEFORE YOU ACT.