And the Barotse Royal Establishment, BRE, has warned that no 'politicking' will be allowed during the cultural event.
Announcing the Kuomboka date last Wednesday, BRE’s Ngambela Nyambe Mwenda cautioned that the Royal Establishment would not allow the cultural event to be used as a political battleground for those engaged in political squabbles.
The Ngambela has further advised that since Kuomboka was a cultural event of the Lozi people, all those attending should observe and respect the cultural norms and etiquette that surround the event.
Political regalia would also not be permitted at the ceremony, but only traditional red berets (ma-shushu) and other traditional regalia such as musisi for women and siziba for men, which promote the Barotse culture, would be acceptable.
Meanwhile, the Ngambela has clarified that no one would need to be issued any written or formal invitation to attend the Kuomboka as everyone is free and welcome at the cultural spectacle.
The traditional prime minister noted that, although Kuomboka was for the Barotse people, it had become an international marvel over the years, drawing attendance from all over the world.
Last year’s Kuomboka was heavily politicized resulting in a political showdown between Zambia’s main opposition party, UPND, and the ruling PF party, which saw the eventual arrest of the opposition party leader, Hakainde Hichilema, on charges of treason for allegedly refusing to give way to Zambia’s president Lungu when their respective motorcades met on the Limulunga road leading to the King’s royal pavilion, the N’amoo.
After 127 days in deplorable maximum detention, the opposition leader was released on a deal believed to have been brokered by the Commonwealth Secretary-General Rt. Hon. Patricia Scotland QC, in public interest.