[FoME] Tonga.Online newsletter # 56
Kuthan / argezim
argezim at silverserver.at
Do Aug 23 09:45:24 CEST 2007
Tonga.Online newsletter # 56
*Maliko Lwiindi Ceremony on 28*^*th* * July 2007 in Sinazongwe /
Zambia: impressive celebrations and encounters*
The annual traditional Lwiindi ceremony at Sinazongwe is a function
where the Tonga people appease and thank their ancestors for what
they have done for them in the just-ending agricultural season.
Central to the ceremony is the visit to the Malende site and shrines
where the hosting Chief pours traditional brewed sorghum beer onto
the graves of the ancestors whilst their spirits are called by nyele
horn blows and clapping hands.
This year, Tonga.Online facilitated the participation of Simonga,
the Ngoma Buntibe group from Siachilaba, to go across and join their
counterpart group Maliko, Honourable Chief Sinazongwe and the
community on the Zambian side in vibrant Lwiindi celebrations on the
The function was not only an opportunity to meet family members,
often after a long time, but also an eye-opener and learning process
for the BaTonga from the Zimbabwean side on how to preserve and
develop their common cultural heritage which faces the risk of
The occasion was also blessed by the visit of Elizabeth Colson, an
American anthropologist who has conducted research among the Tonga
since 1946 and is particularly known for her study /The Social
Consequences of Resettlement/ (published 1971). In her most recent
book /Tonga Religious Life in the Twentieth Century/ (published 2006
in Lusaka) she refers to such ritual occasions as the Lwiindi.
She describes it as follows: "On the Plateau and in the Gwembe
hills, major communal celebrations are associated with the
agricultural regime. These are referred to as /lwiindi/. The two
most important are the /lwiindi lwakumwaka/, associated with
planting, and the /lwiindi lwakutebula/, which takes place after
harvest. On each occasion, the ritually recognized households of a
neighbourhood are expected to make beer for offering to the
ancestors, and people go from homestead to homestead celebrating the
occasion. At /lwiindi lwakumwaka/, they may also visit the community
shrines (/malende/)...Zambezi River communities, less dependent on a
single harvest, did not celebrate either of these /lwiindi./" (page 39)
Interesting to note is how dynamically this cultural heritage has
adapted to today's world and to the needs and occasions of a vibrant
Tonga community in the Gwembe Valley, and how Lwiindi encourages
further cultural encounters across the lake.
See pictures of Maliko Lwiindi celebrations and encounters on
*Tonga.OnAir: Sinazongwe Community Radio Station established
A milestone in the development of Sinazongwe district was marked at
the end of July by the establishment of the first community radio
station in the Gwembe Valley by a team of Austrian 'open access'
radio activists, Sandra Hochholzer, Ingo Leindecker, Hannelore
Leindecker and Marcus Diess, who are reporting on their website
"..the new /Sinazongwe Community Radio/ is ready to go on air!"
More information including a detailed project documentation is
promised to come up soon, read also their blog TRAVELOGUE (in
German) on http://www.servus.at/tongaonair/index.html
The radio station, based at Sinazongwe Basic School adjacent to the
ITC, has the capacity to cover a radius of 20 kilometres and reach
out to 11,000 people but plans are under way to use a transmitter at
Sinazongwe Boma which would expand the range to a 60-kilometre
radius covering the whole Sinazongwe community as far as Mamba and
Kanchindu. An application for the relevant licences is in the
pipeline with fund raising still in progress to cover the costs. The
relevant frequency will be announced as soon as the licence is
granted and broadcasting starts.
Alongside the construction of a VHF-transmitter, mast and a fully
fledged radio-studio, the Austrian team conducted a training
programme to capacitate the local community to run the studio and
radio station. The training covered studio and transmitting
techniques, analogue-audio-cut, recording and microphone- techniques
and the editorial and technical preparation of some
radio-transmissions. The community has already established a
committee to manage the station.
The Radio Station was officially handed over to the Sinazongwe
community by the Austrian 'Tonga.OnAir' Team on the afternoon of
28th July, following the traditional Lwiindi ceremony. The occasion
was graced by the Zambian Minister for the Southern Province, the DC
and by Chief Sinazongwe. The school choir of Sinazongwe Basic School
provided enjoyable entertainment to the guests, teachers and pupils
attending, including a special 'Radio Song' for the occasion.
The 'Tonga.OnAir' project was developed and implemented in close
collaboration with AZFA in Linz and the Tonga.Online team in Binga.
In fact, the two projects perfectly complement each other since they
share the same goals: to capacitate and equip the Tonga community to
use modern technology for their information and communication needs,
to promote freedom of expression; self-representation and self
esteem; and to promote a sense of cultural identity.
Both projects emphasise an open-access approach in order to empower
the community at large. There is also a shared vision that modern IT
technology will eventually contribute to the healing of the split in
the community caused by its relocation and resettlement resulting
from the building of Kariba dam.
see pictures of the construction and hand over ceremony on
*Tonga.Online / Tonga.OnAir - live input at Africa Remix Panel @
Johannesburg Art Gallery JAG
The second Africa Remix panel discussion -- Digital Africa - took
place on Saturday, July 28 from 10am to 3pm at the prestigious
Johannesburg Art Gallery JAG in South Africa.
'Africa Remix: Contemporary Art of a Continent', running at the JAG
until September 30, features the work of more than 85 artists from
25 countries on the African continent and in the Diaspora. The
exhibition has already visited Düsseldorf, London, Paris and Tokyo.
In partnership with Trinity Session, the Digital Africa panel
comprised two sessions focusing on technology and its uses in
relation to the visual arts. The panel discussed how art advances in
the technological world, how, in turn, technology influences
artistic creation, and how technology is shaping contemporary
The panel included, Lorna Abungu (Kenya), Bassam El-Baroni (Egypt),
Adam Haupt (Cape Town) and from Johannesburg William Kentridge,
Ishmail Farouk, Mphethi Morojele, Pavlo Phitides, Jason Hobbs, Aryan
Kaganof and Christo Doherty. Moderators were Stephen Hobbs and
A special input for the discussion was provided by Keith Goddard in
a live interview via cellphone from Sinazongwe/Zambia where he was
attending the annual traditional Lwiindi ceremony. Keith explained
the joint endeavour of the Tonga.Online and Tonga.OnAir projects to
use modern digital means for the promotion and development of Tonga
music and cultural heritage.
The next Africa Remix panel discussion on August 25 is dubbed
'African Intellectuals'. Another discussion focusing on Museums and
Exhibitions will follow in September. The final discussion will also
be held in September in conjunction with the Art Historians Conference.
find some pictures from JAG in Johannesburg and Keith Goddard
phoning from Sinazongwe on _www.mulonga.net <http://www.mulonga.net/>_
read more about Africa Remix: ´Art that gets to the heart of Africa´
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