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Engineer Kumwenda Authors History of Tumbuka

By Emmanuel Yokoniya

Lilongwe, Mana. Engineer, Fidelis Kumwenda has written a book about the history of Tumbuka in which he explained how the Tumbuka and other tribes are mixed.

The Book states that ‘Tumbuka’ is not one tribe but a mixture of all tribes in the country and further argues that the mixture would continue through marriage.

In an interview on Wednesday in Lilongwe, Kumwenda said the book was a poignant reminder to all Malawians about how tribes in the past generation co-existed for peace and tranquility through marriages. 

“While inter-tribal marriages still exist, there are resistances by some parents who are encouraging marriages between tribes from their regions while discouraging them from other regions.

This book will help people understand that mixed marriage has not started today and this is why in my book am arguing that no tribe in the country is a separate entity with totally different lifestyles and languages,” he said.

Titled Mbiri Ya Atumbuka, the book is tripartite with the first part giving a brief description of Swahiri, Chewa,Tonga and others.

The Engineer, an employee of Nation Publication who is Ngoni by tribe from Mzimba district said he was motivated by Mudauko na makani gha  ba Ngoni  to come up with his book.

According to the author, the  book was  a vernacular literature used for teaching  in the country’s primary schools around  1960s but disappeared the time  all books were ordered to be burnt that were written in Tumbuka.

He dedicated the second part describing some contents from the book that he remembers.

His last part which is appealing contains meaning of names, places in the northern region and some Tumbuka terminologies which the author believes are currently waning. 

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