Kalanga must shake off the ‘Ndebele’ shadow says Moyo

Updated: March 13, 2013

Reprinted from Bulawayo24.

His recently-published book has stirred a hornet’s nest, attracting the ire of even those claiming to be fighting for the freedom of Matabeleland, but Ndzimu-unami Emmanuel Moyo remains undeterred.

“The Rebirth of Bukalanga” accuses secessionist groups claiming to be fighting for the freedom of Matabeleland of failing to acknowledge that even those small tribes and clans reeling under Ndebele domination have a right to self-determination.

Moyo (30) has been accused of being an agent out to divide Matabeleland so that the secessionist agenda fails.

Coming from Matabeleland, having experience of the region’s under-development, and being affected by Gukurahundi and knowing how extreme and intolerant the secessionist groupings are of opposing views, Moyo is eager to see the downtrodden Kalanga people shake off the “Ndebele” shadow they have lived under since they were colonized by Mzilikazi.

For example, he challenges why those fighting for secession are putting the name Mthwakazi at the forefront of their new state’s name, when, according to him, Mthwakazi was a part of Bukalanga. He also challenges why the dominant Kalangas of Plumtree, where he comes from, are classified as Ndebele when they outnumber the clans that originally came from Zululand, and why all those in present-day Matabeleland should be forced to honour King Mzilikazi day when most tribes there had their forefathers butchered into submission by the Ndebele king.

He also challenges the history of Bakalanga having stolen land and cattle from the Shonas, arguing that the former were in what is now called Matabeleland about 1 500 years earlier.

Moyo asserts that, contrary to popular belief, the origins of Bukalanga or Vhukalanga, tribes under which are the Bakalanga, BaNambya, BaLemba, BaLozwi/Rozwi, BaLilima, BaTalawunda, VhaVenda, and some Vakaranga, can be traced to a Bantu people that settled in the Zimbabgwean (Zimbabwean) plateau, Botswana and across the Limpopo about the turn of the Christian era, and intermarried with a people of Jewish origin who settled in the land around the same time.

This, he says, explains the Semitic strain of blood in the Bukalanga race, and the apparently Semitic religious beliefs espoused in their traditional Mwali Religion. The peoples making up the Bukalanga race were the builders of the archaeological sites of Mapungubgwe, Great Zimbabgwe, and Khami, three of the four man-made UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Southern Africa, and had the third greatest Civilization in pre-colonial Africa after Egypt and Axum – the Zimbabgwe Civilization.

“They also had distinctive forms of government – the Mapungubgwe, Monomotapa, Togwa and Lozwi Kingdoms – unknown anywhere else in Central and Southern Africa. These Kingdoms existed for a combined period of over 1000 years,” said Moyo.

“Their traditional religion – the Mwali Religion – had its origins in the Semitic world, and is a corrupted form of Yahweism or Judaism. The Kalanga are known to have been leading agriculturalists and miners and workers in gold, iron and copper who manufactured implements and artifacts from these metals; and were traders who traded with such far off lands as Persia, China, Europe and India at a time when no other peoples in Sub-Saharan Africa were involved in similar trades. They remain a distinct African race to this day.”

Despite the criticism heaped upon him Moyo remains committed to correcting the history of his region, while also fighting for political cleanliness in Zimbabwe as a whole.

He describes himself an “unapologetic Christian Politician and Capitalist, driven by a firm sense of justice and fairness, bent on contributing to changing the world into a better place, while not bound by tradition or conventional wisdom, questioning so-called expert opinion and authority.

Moyo grew up at his grandparents’ rural home in the District of Bulilima-mangwe, and attended Tokwana High School, graduating at the top of the class in 1999.

He now lives in Johannesburg, but his love for Zimbabwe keeps him driving economic prosperity initiatives in his home area.

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