A Woman chief ready for throne

Alex Matlala

Alex Matlala

The much-awaited inauguration of the first woman chief in Limpopo will be held on August 29 to coincide with Women's Month.

The inauguration of Felia Lwandlamuni N'wamitwa-Shiluvhana will be held in the N'wamitwa Royal Kraal near Tzaneen.

The decision was taken at the weekend by the royal family. Parliamentarians and leading women from across the country are expected to attend.

Family spokesman Walter Mbhalati said the date was chosen to honour women across the province and beyond.

"For hundreds of decades, our culture deprived women and made them to be seen as inferior to men.

"They were also forbidden to become leaders of societies, thereby making them followers," Mbhalati said.

"This inauguration will also serve as an indication that things are starting to shine brighter for women in our country.

"It also goes to show that women can also be entrusted with responsibilities that can change the society for the better," Mbhalati added.

The event will continue despite the objections raised by a group of local people led by the heir's cousin, Sydwell N'wamitwa.

The group's spokesman, Ishmael Risivi, told Sowetan recently they would inaugurate their preferred chief at a date still to be arranged.

Risivi said they objected to the decision by the Constitutional Court to declare N'wamitwa-Shiluvhana as the legitimate chief for the Valoyi tribe in Tzaneen.

The court ruled in favour of N'wamitwa-Shiluvhana, overturning the earlier rulings of both the Pretoria high court and the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein, which had ruled in favour of Sydwell.

N'wamitwa-Shiluvhana said yesterday that those who objected to the ruling would have to deal with the court.