Of dynasties and ascendance
THE era of the ‘self’ signalled the end of dynasty. The pride of a father is in his son. Our cultural beliefs tell us that it is in your sons where you must invest your hard work on.
The Villager, like all cultured African men, will be quick to acknowledge that his daughters, although he equally loves them, will one day have to leave his homestead, start a new family at another homestead several kilometres away. That will never change, although as the head who enjoys family, love and togetherness, will be forced to let go and allow nature to take its course.
The Villager will indeed get his pride from his son. He knows that in this race, one will have to pass on the button stick to his next blood. The relay will go on into countless generations to come, from his father, to him, his sons and to his grandchildren. In this way of life, wealth is created, family (unity) will be the main motivator and power is consolidated. There will be evident mutual respect for each and every member of the family and the neighbourhood will respect them as such.
The wish for any family is to be known to everyone as serious business people, as serious sportsmen, as serious administrators, as serious lawyers, as serious engineers, which ever shoe fits. After all, the biblical man has three reasons to look up to: To live, be loved and to leave a legacy. If by any chance you were born to live only, you may as well switch off.
The cultural governance has allowed Villagers to have faith and loyalty to their Kings and Queens. That was before the arrival of the early spies to the village’s shores. For generations Villagers believe that the latter are custodians of their culture and traditional norms. One was always sure to get the best advice pertaining your cultural values. They are rich with wisdom and history although most of it is oral and they are rich with blessings too. Their word must not be taken for granted. This wisdom and history has been passed on from generation to generation and has been shared amongst family members from time to time.
The wisdom and history have been consolidated and cemented in this way. That is the reason why society has accepted royalty to remain in the same chosen family. It is for that reason one would find people with “royal blood” in every village. Some villages have embraced the matrimonial while others have settled for patrimonial. Either way, that has worked for those villagers.
Since time immemorial, the presiding king or queen would always choose leaders to lead other subjects. Dynastic approach was implemented at this level. It was given that the siblings of any of Omandengu go muuzilo have to be exhausted before any other families could be considered. Indeed, it was etumba enene to be from the ruling families. That in itself became a curse to some families. It went to their heads and made themselves believe that they are among the chosen ones to an extent that they looked down on the rest and became autocratic. To make matters worse, some members of the “royal blood” would do anything possible to block their own blood’s ascendance to the throne.
Remember the great King Shaka Zulu. He even went to the extent of killing his own sons and male cousins, why? Because he regarded them a threat to his life and to his thrown. In fact his life was his rule. History tells us that the Ndebele tribe in Zimbabwe was born from King Shaka’s cousins, after they ran away from him.
Hats off to the king, long live his legacy, may his wisdom continue to see reason and act accordingly.
The Villager applauds the reigning king for abolishing the dynastic approach. The rational is that communities could not be subjected to autocracy in perpetuity.
Currently the honour of leading in The Villager’s village is bestowed on an individual based on his or her own qualities, abilities and credibility. How the king does it, is his own prerogative.
That was the death of dynasty at that level. The Villager is counting the same among the legacies of the reigning king. The rest of humanity is just waking up to the ugly head of leadership dynasty where the king will always have the last say.
Unless you are American or Arab, dynasties in the political arena have and will never work. The Villager contends that all the quarrels and political squabbles in the Arab world is due to the fact that somebody somewhere forgot what time it is. It’s not in the interest of any leader chasing a legacy to advocate for dynasty especially in a democratic society. The structures are well defined and the political history is well documented.
The activities in politics are meant to be transparent to each and every member of a given political party. For one to get into a leadership position, one must have the mandate of the people. Without that mandate one will not be able to represent anybody, let alone call themselves a leader. It is through the ballot box where one will get this mandate and this is the reason why an elected leader will soon get maximum support from those who elected them. The mandate will have a term attached to it. After the expiry of that term, the mandate needs to be renewed, again through the ballot box.
This has allowed political parties to be able to choose their leaders based on candidates’ qualities and abilities. Villagers should take pride and appreciation to those who departed whilst fighting for this right, a right that only came through independence. May their souls rest in eternal peace. At the right time, normally when omukuluntu a tu la mo sha montungwa, villagers openly discuss any succession issues and consider their choices, again basing on the contestants’ qualities and abilities.
True, dynasties do not work in modern day leadership. In Africa, we have existed in such a way that our society acknowledges the existence of cultural leadership, and have accepted the way succession is passed on from one generation to the other. The same society has, however, refused the same to apply on national politics.
Every member of a political party, thus, stands a chance to be a leader depending on the qualities and abilities as earlier mentioned. Political leaders should not put political chairs as part of their sons or daughters’ inheritance. Hence The Villager has always despised the notion of a daughter or son of a leader speaking on behalf of a Government by virtue of them having the same blood.
The Villager will have no problem with inheritance on assets and liabilities by their offspring. The Villager thinks that’s the right thing to do, because all the hard work must be enjoyed by our offspring. The Villager will however continue to have a problem with political leaders who want to give national inheritance to their sons and daughters thereby blocking all the other villagers from ascending to the top.
Acknowledging that there is no monopoly over wisdom, The Villager is taking leave of this column “Just A Call” to allow those who subscribe to the saying that “knowledge is not knowledge until its shared,” to do just that.
After all, mine was just a call.
You never know, what you know may be the only thing needed to direct The Land of the Brave to positive thinking. The Villager has enjoyed the ride, and has already told the driver to drop me by the next STOP sign. The driver has warned The Villager that he should disembark with speed, otherwise with our generous City Police, the poor driver will be given a N$3 000 traffic ticket.
Driver: “Tate,I told you to be quick, I think you want me to be given a ticket.”
The Villager: Sorry driver....(doors closes). The Villager will see you when he cannot avoid it. PF
Contributors are welcome to write and email opinion articles for this column – Editor.