A letter dated at 12 December 2019 from the Ministry of Public Works directed the relevant authorities to forefeit any assets owned by Chief Ndiweni as a result of his chieftaincy and strip all benefits from him.

This has attracted widespread criticism with Saviour Kasukuwere being one of the earliest voices to speak out.

Nelson Chamisa who is a long time ally of Ndiweni has condemned the behaviour of the government calling for an end to it.

This is the full statement he released.

1/4The persecution of Chief Ndiweni is unacceptable. An attack on a chief is an attack on a people,culture and heritage.The chieftainship is rooted in a people’s identity not vindictive partisan politics and undue interference.Smith tried it but Rhodesia ultimately failed &fell.

2/4The institution of traditional leaders & its independence shld be protected thru the framework defined in the constitution.Traditional leaders serve a vital purpose in preserving our cultural heritage,must not be used agnst the people they represent to silence genuine concerns

3/4 The government should play no role in the appointment of traditional leaders, but such processes should be determined by the traditions of the local community.

4/4 A rightful leader cannot be imposed on a people. Our call for genuine reforms driven by the people’s agenda must keep growing louder & force institutional change. It is not the role of government to impose itself on the people. #ThePeoplesChief