THE INTERPRETATION OF UMODZI KUMAWA BY GOVERNMENT
By: Professor Edgar Ng’oma
1968 UNIP History repeats itself where Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe lobbyed Southerners to unseat Reuben chitandika Kamanga as vice president of UNIP intra party elections and Kamanga lost as MCC.
This loss infuriated Easterners such that there was polarisation between Northerners and Easterners. Easterners in protest and anger told the northerners and UNIP that touch one (Ruben Kamanga) you have touched us ALL ,so the birth of UMODZI KUMAWA. An outfit of separation from the main land Zambia.
They threatened to secede to breakaway from Zambia and be part of Malawi. The boundary with mainland Zambia was going to be the Luangwa River. When Kamanga lost as MCC he automatically lost his position as Vice president.
Today the 1968 UNIP kapwepwe Vs Kamanga has repeated itself in PF. Northerner Sampa with help of a southerner as head of state in PF saga, Sampa Vs Edgar Chagwa Lungu Easterners fight for power to lead PF has popped up again.
Kapwepwe 1968 is now Sampa and Kamanga in 1968 who lost power is ECL who has also lost power and in a similar reaction like the easterners of 1968 have coined once you touch one , you have touched us all. Umodzi KUMAWA.
And what kind of coincidence that then the touch one and touch us all slogan pops up (UMODZI KUMAWA) as a developmental agenda led by politically exposed persons .
The timing, the composition of the people spearheading it, is a source of concern to government.
This is the thinking and analysis of government.
MY PERSONAL OPINION.
I know that the general citizens of Eastern Province do not know this history of Umodzi KUMAWA as a political slogan coined to secede breakaway from mainland Zambia.
What they think and know is the meaning of UMODZI (UNITY/MUKWASU) and not touch one you have touched us all.
The ordinary citizen wants unity of the province to develop the province and supplement government efforts to develop the province and not to secede or break away.
The original use of the word Umodzi Kumawa has spoiled for us genuine easterners and ordinary easterners to use this quality name. It has betrayed us.
I am personally very unhappy with this development but I have come to understand government concerns may be genuine and as such because for us to spearhead this Kumawa developmental agenda of the province we need total government cooperation and support.
Because of this development, it is just prudent for us not politically exposed persons that during a general conference for easterners, we propose another name to present to government and our traditional leaders for approval.
During that conference, we will invite chairpersons of other provincial organisations with similar developmental agenda to be guests.
I submit this with a very heavy heart .
Prof. Edgar Ng’oma
Bona-fide Easterner/Patriotic Zambian citizen.