My First Tour Report: Chief Mukupa Kaoma's area, 1963
|Set out below is a copy of my first Tour Report in full. My DC would make
comments on each annexure before forwarding a copy of the report to the
PC. At the end of my Report are my hand-drawn map of the area and
statistical tables; the latter were of great use to the 'Native Authority' for tax
purposes, and gave us a clear insight on male migrant labour - most went
to the Copperbelt for employment. I have retained copies of my second
and third Tour Reports, whose length and contents (including statistics and
maps) are similar.
The Report's inclusion in this book is intended to answer an average
reader's queries as to what pre-Independence DOs did on tour, why they
went, and what were their interests and objectives.
Annexure I; GENERAL.
Chief Mukupa Kaoma's area, lying directly to the south of Mporokoso Soma,
is mostly high plateau rising to over 5,000 feet in many places. It
encompasses the headwaters of three large rivers and their tributaries: the
Kalungwishi, Luangwa and Lukulu. The Musumba is sited on the crest of
an escarpment, with a fine view to the south-east over the upper basin of
the Lukulu. The two parishes toured were Chundu in the north-east and
Malaila including the Musumba in the south-east; they form the larger and
more interesting part of the Chief's area, but had not been toured by a Soma
officer since 1960. A number of changes have taken place since then.
The Lungu area, comprising Chiefs Mukupa Kaoma and his cousin
Chitoshi, is very much the Cinderella of Mporokoso District. There is little
or no trade, and hardly any labour except that provided occasionally by the
poor Native Authority or recently by the small Agricultural Department substation.
At first sight it has little to offer in its natural resources, and certainly
nothing to compare with the fish industry of the Tabwa to the north. The
Native Treasury struggles; without a generous deficiency grant at the end
of last year, its head would scarcely be above water.
The people are very friendly, contented and for the most part easy-going,
and this impression is given by the Native Authority staff as well as the villager.
Some effects of this attitude may be noticed in other parts of this report. At any rate, for all its deficiencies, this is a most happy area to visit and work in.
The touring party was well received in all but a few villages and, although
times have changed, the older people still observe some of the elaborate
etiquette of greeting the touring officer. At most villages, and more especially
in the north, food was provided for the party. The villages were generally of
a high standard, clean and well laid out, although small. The Chief obviously
takes a pride in the condition of the villages, and when a village moves he
personally chooses the new site and plans the layout; in this and in other
ways he keeps in close contact with the people. He himself was unfortunately
not able to accompany me on tour, as he had only returned from a session of
the House of Chiefs when I was half-way through, and then he was preparing
to follow up his work there by visits to his fellow Chiefs in this and
neighbouring Districts. However, he took great interest in the progress of the
tour and at the end we had long discussions on matters arising.
Politically the whole area is quiet. They had their troubles in 1958 and
1961, just like everybody else; road blocks were constructed, the school
staff were in fear of their lives, and the Chief was threatened by a mob with
spears. At election time last year I presided at the polling station here and
nothing could have been more peaceful. There are few branches of political
parties here compared with the rest of the District, and local opinion is that
most trouble-makers that do appear come from the neighbouring area of
Chief Shibwalya Kapila. During the course of the tour a political meeting
was held at the Musumba, and one of my Messengers went to attend. From
his report I gathered that, in spite of distances, more than half of the 450
audience had come from the areas of Chiefs Chitoshi and Shibwalya Kapila,
and nearly all those locally resident came from the Musumba itself. In the
villages we toured that day only three people had gone to attend that
meeting. My general impression is (and here, as in most of my report, I
make the distinction between the Musumba with its environs and the rest
of the outlying villages) that in the villages the people are not madly
interested in politics; they just wish to live, to let live, and to be left alone.
The same easily contented and unambitious attitude may be noticed in their
relationships with the Native Authority, the Soma, and other Government
Departments; they respect them all, so long as they don't trouble them.
The theme of the talks we gave to the villagers while on tour included an
explanation of the new Government, in what ways it has not changed, the
forthcoming census, the House of Chiefs, and identity certificates.
Audience response was always polite and they seemed to agree with all
that was said. I would have liked plenty of questions and arguments, but
got none. I also tried to enquire more informally what they expected from
Government in return for their taxes and so on, and again I got the
impression that for the most part they were either content that Government
knew what it was doing (why meddle in such celestial matters?) or content
that progress should pass them by. No party posters or other signs of
political activity were seen in the whole area.
The religion of the area is almost entirely Roman Catholic, and the
schools here are run by the White Fathers. There is, however, no Mission
in the whole of the Chief's country. Worship takes place in the houses, and
very few churches were found; in one village an excellent new church has
been built in the last few months in Kimberley brick and the old one is being
turned into a cattle shed. There are a few Watchtower adherents in the
vicinity of the Musumba and they too have a Kimberley brick church, close
to the road. Some of the farmers are Watchtower, and have in the past
allowed their religious convictions to play a part in their relations with the
Agricultural Department and with the schools, but no such trouble is
apparent now. The Administrative Secretary is a lone Seventh Day
Adventist, and consequently does not work on Saturdays.
The touring party visited the "Ngulu shrine" near Chongo Chibimbi. This
is a natural outcrop of granite rocks, about five in number, the largest of which
measures some 35 feet in height and 50 feet in width and is so striking in its
solitary grandeur and unexpected position that it naturally contains a
powerful spirit. The spirit of the Ngulu is said to live in a python which guards
the rocks and the spring which emanates from the base of them. I had read
of this python from earlier reports but we saw no sign of him. This used to
be the shrine of the Chief's hunting spirit, and had to be invoked before the
Chief set out on a hunting expedition. Superstition with regard to it is dying
fast; the villagers and ourselves climbed all over the rocks without thought
of sacrilege and the present Chief often visits it as a tourist attraction.
Five exemption certificates were issued, no new identity certificates. A
total of 64 guns were recorded in the two parishes, including 7 shotguns.
Comments on Annexure I above by the District Commissioner
This was Mr Bond's first village-to-village tour and he has clearly made
the most of his opportunities.
As he says, the Lungu area of this District does not offer any very obvious
channels of development but the Chief is a notable figure both locally and
in the wider sphere of the House of Chiefs.
A. N.Mc Gregor
Annexure II; THE NATIVE AUTHORITY, AND TAX
Chief Mukupa Kaoma is progressive and ambitious for the welfare of his
people. He keeps himself well informed and is in close touch with what is
going on in his area and in his people's minds. I shall not forget my first
meeting with him when I found him working in the Administrative Secretary's
office during the latter's absence and dealing most competently with the dayto-
day administration. He is an easy person to work with, has definite
opinions of his own, and deliberates carefully on all sides of a problem before
making up his mind. He never seems to bully his staff or be overbearing
towards his people, and obviously commands their affection and respect.
He is to be congratulated on his recent election to the House of Chiefs, an
honour which he undoubtedly deserves and a responsibility which he takes
very seriously. Unfortunately the facilities are not readily at hand in his area
to be equal to his high hopes, but one could not say that he would fail for
want of trying. He became Chief in 1950 and, from what I can gather, has
matured greatly in wisdom and experience since he took office.
The Administrative Secretary, Gracewell Sikazwe, is again a delightful
personality, and runs the Native Authority with reasonable efficiency. He
has not been in this District for many years, having spent most of his service
under Senior Chief Tafuna in his home area. On tour he was competent
and cheerful, but I was sometimes surprised to notice how unacquainted
he was with the villages and the people. He has been on two training courses at Chalimbana and one at Mungwi, some time ago; he did
reasonably well but not as well as perhaps he thinks. What he would like
now is to go on a course to England (in place of the Chief who had similar
hopes but has since postponed them), but perhaps what is needed is an
assessment of his abilities at one of the new Mungwi courses.
Anthony Chipasha, who has been Treasury Clerk since 1956, is Standard
VI but of not high material. He is slow and hard-working, but on a number
of occasions has got himself into great difficulties with his accounts. At the
end of the tour I inspected his books and his February Trial Balance, and
after the necessary amendments they were found to be correct. The Native
Treasury is poor, and is not helped by the fact that nobody at Mukupa
Kaoma has a firm grasp of financial matters. It is a pity that the pleasant
and friendly attitude which one finds among the staff cannot compensate
for this unfortunate deficiency.
There remain the Kapasus, a smart and hard-working force. I was
particularly impressed on tour with the new Head Kapasu who, though
young, showed great authority and efficiency and was at all times helpful
The Native Authority building programme has been going ahead well.
The office block was built in 1961 and there are now nine staff houses, the
last of which should be completed and inhabited this month. There is also
a house for a Dispensary Assistant which is just ready for occupation. The
Administrative Secretary is undoubtedly a good builder, whatever his other
failings, and supervises the construction closely with the eye of an expert.
Transport of materials and labour problems made progress last year rather
slow, and the delay in the release of money from loans and grants was partly
the cause for the Native Authority staff to exist for four months without salary,
a hardship they endured with customary cheerfulness.
Tax collection is a more serious reason for the impecunious state of the
Lungu Treasury. So often the excuse for low tax revenue is that the bulk of
the taxpayers are on the Copperbelt and beyond the control of the home
Treasury. With a few rough figures I should like to prove that this argument
has no basis. Briefly, in the Lungu areas of Mukupa Kaoma and Chitoshi
during 1962:- estimated taxable rate £1,205; amount received, £180 locally and about £600 from the Copperbelt (due allowance being made for those
employed elsewhere); taxable population estimate, 980 local and 1,825 on
the Copperbelt; conclusion, only 40% of those locally resident paid tax, while
55% of those on the Copperbelt paid tax! The political uncertainty last year
and elections undoubtedly had their effect on tax collection, but if this effect
was at all widespread it makes little difference to the disparity between these
figures. Of course we here can do little about the other 45% on the Copperbelt
but there is little excuse for collecting from only 40% within one's own area.
Another reason for this position is, I feel, the easy-going attitude of the Native
Authority staff, to which I have referred earlier. If they go without their salaries
for failure to collect levy, that is principally their own affair, but failure to collect
tax is a serious neglect of their duty to Central Government.
While on tour, about £30 was collected in tax and the same amount in
levy. All of it was 1962 tax or even 1961's. There is thus no reason why in
the current year, collecting for 1961, '62 and '63 plus a sizeable amount in
late payments, they should not exceed their present estimates. This was
pointed out to them and a careful watch will be kept on their collection
figures. They must show they mean business, once the months of grace
have expired, or they will lose their authority over the people - which in this
respect is very low anyway at present. In two distant villages I visited almost
all the taxpayers had deserted over the border into Chief Munkonge's area
on our approach; the Native Authority had to be told to send back Kapasus
the following week to collect defaulters. The Chief, however, takes a much
firmer hand, and his recent tour in another parish may have spread rumours
and had its effect on other tax defaulters.
The system adopted last year with many tax defaulters was to confiscate
their bicycles, and the idea was to sell these later and recover tax from
them. A dozen bicycles were found still in the lock-up. The disadvantage
of this system is to deprive a man of one of the means of finding labour
through which to pay his tax. Many people would gladly have served as
carriers on tour, but they had no bicycles.
Comments on Annexure II above by the District Commissioner
I agree with Mr Bond's comments on the staff of this Native Authority which serves as the Headquarters for the two Lungu Chiefs.
The tax figures are worse than I had expected for, although until the end
of 1962 the Chief was very loth to take vigorous action, there have been
recent signs that he realises his Treasury's need for the revenue. His
absence at two meetings of the House of Chiefs has since delayed things
but I think we shall see considerable improvement in the months ahead.
His staff very definitely need his driving force behind them before they can
The seizure of bicycles is a difficult point and the Authority's legal powers
in this matter have been explained to it in detail. This is one case in which
the staff show no lack of enthusiasm! It may be as much the relative
lowness of the pay offered as lack of bicycles which discouraged potential
carriers, and it is for consideration whether the extra 3d per day should not
be introduced in this District - a carrier's day is certainly a more strenuous
one than the average road labourer's.
Annexure III; THE NATIVE COURT
Chief Mukupa Kaoma has a Grade D Court with power to impose a
maximum sentence of £15 fine or three months imprisonment. At present
the Lungu native Rules and Orders give an alternative sentence in most
cases, of £1 fine = one month or £5 = 3 months, but the Chief is considering
putting forward an amendment to raise fines given, on the basis that if a
labourer these days earns 3/- per day a month's imprisonment is equivalent
to at least a £4 fine. A drawback to this plan was pointed out to him, that
more people would opt for a prison sentence, since they have little money
and would be as willing to work in prison as spend the time sitting at home
with no work - and, besides, the conditions at Mporokoso prison are not
unattractive (and at Milima are luxurious, I am told); consequently the Court
might well lose an important part of its revenue.
Appeals go to the superior Court of Senior Chief Tafuna in Abercorn
District. There have been no appeals recently, which perhaps indicates the
fairness of judgements in the eyes of the people.
The Chief himself is clearly experienced and very well acquainted with
the law, and hears most of the cases himself. This may be necessary at
the moment, since his two Court Members are both new to the job, but
under pressure of other commitments he is naturally anxious that they
should cope with most of the work by themselves. The Court Members,
Alexander Kombe and John Musonda, were appointed in January 1962 and
January 1963 respectively. Their appearances (a cowboy and a prizefighter)
do not do justice to their obvious potential abilities. They seem to
command great respect and authority among the people, and they are both
conscientious in studying the law.
The office of Court Clerk has also changed hands recently. Henry
Chongo, son-in-law of the ex-Head Kapasu, took over in November 1962
and again is busy learning the law. Although on probation at present, the
Chief has high hopes that he will gain sufficient experience in the next six
months to be an asset to the Native Court. He is Standard VI and a former
temporary Kapasu. At first acquaintance he appears conceited and
insolent, but until I know him better I would say it is only a mannerism.
At the end of the tour the Court Clerk's books and case records were
checked, and a number of skeletons in the cupboard were found, left over
by his predecessor who was not famed for his accuracy or legibility. About
120 cases were heard in the Court during the last twelve months, with no
prize for popularity going to any particular type. What was alarming was
the number of outstanding fines:- 93 for a total of £109-6-6, the majority
pending since 1962 and some being outstanding for well over a year. In its
present financial state especially the Native Authority and Court cannot
afford such inefficiency in the execution of justice, and the Court Clerk has
been warned (though his predecessors may be more to blame) to take
immediate steps to recover these fines. The trouble partly lies, I think, in
the Court Room itself; the case records have shown no date by which the
fine must be paid and on which the alternative of imprisonment will be
imposed, and Court Members have now been advised to include this in their
judgements so that firm action may be taken immediately the deadline is
reached. In the last month or so this system has been observed, but it does
not lessen the task of catching up on 1962 defaulters.
No cases were heard on tour, in spite of my encouragement to do so when
an obvious instance presented itself. I was informed that, with regard to the
normal offences one meets on tour, it was the custom for the Native Authority
to tour all areas in April for tax collection and village hygiene inspection, and
that villagers were given grace until the end of the rains to put their houses in
order. I feel that on this subject, as on that of my previous paragraph, too
much grace is given, and the Native Authority will suffer for its easy-going
Comments on Annexure III above bv the District Commissioner
The previous Court Clerk was ve/}' definitely at fault on the collection of
fines and compensation outstanding. I had cause to bring this forcibly to
his attention when going through the books with him and his successor at
the end of last year. Several of the people concerned have left the District
since fines were imposed but eve/}' effort will be made to collect the rest.
Two men have recently been committed for contempt of Court in such cases
and the Chief himself is well aware of what is needed.
Annexure IV; AGRICULTURE
The villages continue to practise shifting cultivation, and the staple produce
is cassava, with maize and finger millet. Down in the valleys below the
escarpment, where the soils seem more fertile, cassava matures in two or
three years, but in some of the higher parts it was observed to take as long
as four years sometimes. At this time of the year (early March) most of the
villagers were engaged in fencing their gardens; some were already
beginning to lop branches for October burning, which seemed a little early.
In first year gardens we often saw sweet potatoes and cucumbers, and in
a second year garden usually beans and groundnuts. Occasionally
pumpkins were seen. Mushrooms are now out of season. I had the
impression that the relish part of the diet was poor and not varied enough,
but it is difficult to judge without closer study.
As the country lies at the headwaters of the rivers there is virtually no fish and, with lack of meat in many parts, this is a serious deficiency in the diet.
Only in the lower Luangwa in the extreme north-west, outside the area
toured, are fish caught. There have been several suggestions in the past
for trading with the Tabwa for fish, but so far nothing has happened and it is
difficult yet to know what to give the Tabwa in return. At the Musumba there
are a number of small fish ponds which have been started under the
encouragement of the Agricultural staff, but this is on too small a scale. The
Chief has a larger fish pond, about one square mile of marsh near Vincent
Bulaya, which is fed by a furrow. This has not been a great success yet as
the first load of fish to be deposited there died on the journey, but with the
help of the Agricultural Assistant he is still hopeful for better results this year.
The main development activity is concentrated around the Musumba and
is under the general management of a quiet but most helpful Agricultural
Assisitant and his Demonstrator. The Assistant has been here since 1959,
and has a fine large house which is very much the envy of the Native Authority
staff. Improved farming methods and the introduction of cash crops such as
tobacco and coffee have been the achievements of the last few years.
Tobacco is now in its third year. After a poor start, when the growers were
discouraged by the return from their first attempts, the area under tobacco
cultivation has risen from 2~ acres last year to about 9 acres this year. It is
all the 'samsun' variety of Turkish tobacco. In all there are 21 growers,
including the large individual farmers. At first the Agricultural Department
gave the growers the seedlings and fertilizer ("V" solution containing plenty
of nitrogen for the young plants), but as the growers become more successful
they will have to pay for these items. The crop is harvested from April to June,
baled and labelled on the spot after two weeks of drying and curing; the
marketing problem is handled by the Department at present, who transport
the bales to Lusaka for collection by the Salisbury manufacturers, but again
it is hoped that in the near future the growers will be sufficiently prosperous
and competent to carry on the marketing by themselves.
There is an excellent coffee nursery run by the Department with sufficient
seedlings for the bedding of about 50 acres. As coffee needs a fair amount of
mulching, napier grass is grown in the rotation system for this purpose. Here
again the produce is marketed by the Department, but they plan to provide a small pulping plant at Mukupa Kaoma soon and buy the beans from the growers.
Sites are being prepared for twenty small farms close to the nursery, of about
four acres each, divided by windbreaks down the slope and served by a furrow
along the contour. Three of these farms are already under cultivation, and a
few more on the same pattern at nearby Kalimanshila. The finished farms will
have an orchard and house plot (1'2 acre each), coffee and napier grass (1
acre each), and a final acre divided into six plots for crop rotation. Though this
neat plan is the usual one, it is outside the previous experience of the small
farmers and will require constant patience and instruction on the part of the
Department to ensure its success. All round the Musumba methods of crop
rotation are being introduced, on the five-year system of finger millet, tobacco,
groundnuts, maize, and finally sun hemp (as green manure). As with tobacco,
fertilizer (sulphate of ammonia) will be provided at low cost; the Agricultural
Officer is going to experiment and demonstrate with one farmer, giving him
the fertilizer free and encouraging others with the success of the first man. In
this area it is essential to employ scientific methods and get away from the
citemene system, since the population around the Musumba is already too
high to be supported by the land available for wasteful citimene.
Villagers sometimes allow only eight years regeneration before re-cutting,
unless dissuaded; just here there is scarcely enough land for this
undesirable rate of felling, let alone for the more fastidious demands of the
Forestry Department for at least 20 years of uninhibited growth. Generally
this point is appreciated by the local inhabitants and response to scientific
rotation is good, especially from the older men which is somewhat
surprising. The Agricultural Department's policy is to persuade them to
make the transition rather than compel them, and it has no doubts that by
these means farming development will be achieved which will fit in with the
general plans for improving the Musumba's environs.
There are three large farmers in the vicinity, each with about 12 acres.
Two of them have been on a farmers' course at Mungwi for six months, and
they all took up farming only a couple of years ago. They received the usual
loan in kind to start their ventures - 4 oxen, 2 cows, 2 ploughs and labour
for stumping the land - and are repaying in £12 per annum instalments.
They too are growing cash crops but also go in for larger amounts of staple food produce on a rotation system. One of these, Philip Mukupa, has not
been co-operating with the Department and his fertilizer loan has not been
provided; he is not growing tobacco this year. Farms of this kind are large
by Mporokoso District standards, and every encouragement should be
made to interest others in similar enterprises, both for the agricultural
development of this area and to alleviate the unemployment problem.
In the last two months a Local Farmers' Committee has been formed
under the guidance of the Assistant and the chairmanship of the
Administrative Secretary who takes a keen interest in agriculture. The
various farmers with large or small interests have been divided into four
groups which each send a representative to the committee. The
committee's aims are to discuss new techniques and development in their
own plots, but I hope that as they become more firmly established
themselves they will give thought to the need for agricultural progress in
other parts of the Chief's area than just in the vicinity of the Musumba.
A rainfall gauge has recently been installed, mainly for observation of the
coffee's rain supply. In the last two calendar months 17 inches were
recorded, compared with 24 inches at the Soma.
The figures for livestock in the area toured are as follows:
There is no tsetse fly in the Chief's area, and good natural grazing ground
in many parts. I feel that villages particularly should be encouraged to breed
and keep more livestock to supplement their own diet and as a possible
source for local income. Cattle of course are expensive to obtain, but the
problem should not be dismissed. On this point the Assistant said he hoped
to introduce rotation grazing in the next year or two, to build up the number
of sheep in the villages and on farms, and eventually to produce a butchery.
In conclusion it must be stressed that agriculture is the key to
development in this poor area, and co-operation from all sections of the
community must be given to the Agricultural Department staff who are doing
a fine job. People are learning slowly by watching the success of a few. I
should like to see more happening in the villages and hope that the
Department's staff will be able to spread their influence there, once the initial
hard work near the Musumba has established firm roots.
Comments on Annexure IV above bv the District Commissioner
The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of African Agriculture on his
recent visit expressed optimism for the future of both coffee and tobacco in
the District. He paid a short visit to the Mukupa Kaoma sub-station. It is
cheering to know that the older men are prepared to take advice on rotation,
and I underline the touring officer's hope that the extension staff will be able
to spend more time beyond their sub-station.
Annexure V; EDUCATION
The area is not well covered by schools. There are only three in the whole of
the Chief's area, two of which were visited during the tour. ' In the north the
closing down of Pemba School, over the border in Chief Shibwalya Kapila's
area, has not helped the situation. Further over to the north-west, in an area
not visited this time, most of the children go to Sunkutu School in Chief
Mporokoso's area. In the south, where there is a large child population, Mukupa
Kaoma can obviously not cope with the number of applicants for Sub A level,
and the children go to Chitoshi or Lubushi when they cannot find room at home.
At the Northern Province Education Authority's 17th meeting it was
proposed that provision should be made in the five-year Primary Schools
Development Plan for the upgrading of Mukupa Kaoma School, and that a
Standard III class should be opened in 1965. This is certainly required as
soon as possible. Equally urgent is the provision for another Lower Primary
School to serve the border areas of Mukupa Kaoma and Chitoshi, and
Mutoba Kaibele has been put forward as a suggested site, in Chitoshi's
area. In the area toured there were 1,319 children resident, excluding those
at school in other areas, perhaps equivalent to some 600 of Primary School
age; there are 440 school places at home, of which not a few are taken by
children from outside the area as will be seen. Thus, given the possible
inaccuracy of my statistics, a third of the children go without education of
This is an Upper and Lower Primary School in the north of Mukupa Kaoma's
area, only five miles from the border with Bemba country. It is run by the
White Fathers and comes within the circuit of the Manager of Schools at
Kapatu Mission. There is one Headteacher, Mr.Ndakala, in charge of both
parts of the school, but he finds that he does not have enough opportunity
for proper supervision of the Lower School, and in the foreseeable future
the schools may be run separately under two Headteachers.
Topographically, however, the two sections form one unit, sited in a rough
circle with a diameter of only 200 yards between the Upper and Lower
buildings. There is a staff of eight, including one female teacher, and all
appear to be quite satisfactory. Father Bedard visits the school frequently,
mainly to supervise the building programme, and the new Provincial
Education Officer visited it only a week before my tour.
The roll and attendance statistics are as follows:
Standard V and VI boys living more than a mile from the school
automatically become full boarders. On the day I visited the school, the
grounds were littered with the senior boys with their books, swotting hard for
the Secondary School selection examination which was to take place the
following week. There are no Standard V or VI girls, it will be noticed; they
go from here to Chilubula Mission School in Kasama District (also White
Fathers'). The standard of education in the school is high, and well above
the Provincial average, as shown by these 1962 Standard VI results:-
From here the majority of the boys (97% in 1962) go on to the Secondary
School of St.Francis, Malole, in Kasama District. The feeder schools for
Vincent Bulaya Upper School, apart from its own Lower Primary School,
are Mukupa Kaoma and Chewe. A second intake at Standard V comes in
from Kapatu and Kalabwe Mission Schools which both go as far as
Standard IV. Apart from Chewe, these schools are all about 30 miles away. In the current school year there were more than 80 applicants for Sub A, so
that half the local children are deprived of education from the very start.
A heavy building programme has been going on in the last year, and has
nearly been completed:
1 x 2-classroom block: needs only furniture for the teachers;
2 teachers' houses: one needs doors, the other only to be painted;
1 dormitory for 20 children: needs paint only;
1 store room: needs doors, windows and whitewash.
All these buildings were inspected and I found a good job has been made
of them all. The White Fathers have not stinted where a little extra money
would provide better results, but they are running into a little financial difficulty
in this final phase. One of the teachers is a trades instructor and has closely
supervised the actual construction; both he and the boys seem naturally very
proud of their new buildings. It is hoped that the next stage in the programme
will be the demolition of the old thatched classroom block in the Upper Primary
School, once they can move into the new one; in its place or just behind will
then, perhaps, be built a dining room block with a kitchen attached.
Vincent Bulaya is always a joy to visit. The site is good (though too close to
the village, but the Chief wants the village to move soon), the staff are very
helpful and co-operative, and there always seems to be some activity going
on. Sports include the usual items: football and athletics twice a week,
stoolball, volleyball, netball and rounders. Football fixtures with other schools
present the usual problems of lack of transport; if the senior boys had not
been studying hard when we visited the school I should have liked to challenge
them to a match against the touring party - any fixture would be most gratefully
received. They have a Scout troop, too, of about 32 (not enough girls to form
Guides), but they lack the leadership to be a first class troop at the moment.
We met their patrol leaders at their camp near Mporokoso last October. Their
religious society, the Saverian Movement, though less practical in application,
is an indoor equivalent to scouting in its aims and is well supported.
The Headteacher is very proud of their combined debating society and
drama group, and in spite of obvious lack of amenities for the latter section,
these activities are also enthusiastically supported. I should like to see
them in action, in either capacity. The school is most fortunate in having a well-stocked library, containing 608 books on subjects of every variety.
These books are bought by the White Fathers on a £5 per annum grant - a
system which, with the present appetite for anything in print, must give the
advantage to their schoolchildren in competition with others. The children
themselves run the library, under the direction of an assistant teacher.
On the ground sloping down to the river the school has a fine garden and
orchard. This again is entirely managed and worked by the boys; they sell
their produce of cassava or vegetables to the teachers and the rest goes to
the school for their own maintenance. The orchard is quite large, and full
of bananas, oranges, lemons, guavas, mangoes and so forth,
After Vincent Bulaya, this school is a bit of a disappointment. It is a Lower
Primary School only, run by the White Fathers from Lubushi. The
Headteacher indicated that he would appreciate more frequent and regular
visits from the Manager of Schools. The usual statistics are:-
This is a feeder school for Chitoshi and secondarily Vincent Bulaya, both
28 miles away. Last year 24 children passed their Standard II but only 14
of these were able to find places at the other schools and the rest had to
return to their villages. They had over 100 applicants for Sub A this year,
which meant turning away three-fifths. These facts speak for themselves
and, I hope, in support of the upgrading of the school.
The staff consists of the Headteacher and his Assistant, of Standard VI
and V respectively and both studying for higher qualifications themselves. There is also a female Assistant Teacher. As is generally found in schools
of this grade, the teaching day is divided between work with the upper two
and lower two standards, and the teachers do their best in the circumstances
to keep the children well occupied when not in the classroom.
The buildings consist of one old-type classroom block, two teachers' houses
and several dormitories. The classroom block is re-thatched every year, but
the walls and primitive desks are in bad condition; their maintenance is a
Native Authority responsibility, but the Administrative Secretary seems more
inclined to find fault with the original construction than to make the necessary
repairs. The teachers' houses, in permanent materials, were built in 1958; for
some reason they still have no internal doors, and the Headteacher is at last
thinking of getting help from learner carpenters at the nearby Rural
Development Extension Team. The dormitories are small pole-and-dagga
huts that have to be destroyed and rebuilt each year. After a year they
accumulate ticks and bed-bugs, but the Provincial Medical Officer has said
that this is the school's affair. If this is not due to poor hygiene methods, the
problem will not be solved until a dormitory block is built in permanent
materials. It is encouraging to note that the parents have already burnt the
bricks and provided the timber to start on such a venture, and again carpentry
and semi-skilled labour may be available from the extension team; all that is
needed are the other materials. Watchtower and local politicians did cause
trouble in 1960 and 1961, but no interference is felt now.
There is a small orchard and garden, and a fish pond that is well stocked.
The teachers keep rabbits, which are breeding furiously.
Comments on Annexure V above by the District Commissioner
The Lungu area has suffered from being on the fringe of various Missions'
spheres of influence. Kapatu, Lubushi and Luwingu are all stations of the
White Fathers, some 60, 53 and 60 miles respectively from the Musumba,
but they have all tended to concentrate upon the Bemba on their doorsteps.
But the position is improving. Munshimbwe in the north-west corner of the
Chief's area is due to open as SubA this year and Mutoba Kaibele is on the
District list though no date can be given for its opening. Once Mukupa
Kaoma School is upgraded the Lungu will have three schools providing Standards III and IV The Administrative Secretary is a lively member of
the District Education Authority and can be relied on to ensure that the
interests of this area are not overlooked.
A. N. MacGregor
Annexure VI; DEVELOPMENT
Enough has already been said on agricultural development, which must
remain the lynch-pin of overall development here. All other plans are, rightly,
concentrated on Mukupa Kaoma Musumba.
For some years there have been vague ideas for the construction of a
proper neatly laid-out township at the Musumba, and the Chief has kept a
close eye on the erection of permanent or semi-permanent buildings so that
their sites fit into the general plan. Permanent buildings are for the most
part Native Authority staff houses, the offices, and public amenities such as
a tea-room, bottle store, market and new dispensary. There is a line of
stores and private houses built on a self-help basis with the aid and
encouragement of the extension team. Township Rules have been drawn
up and submitted to the Governor for his approval.
The extension team under Duncan Banda is a great asset. It is doing
good work in spite of the uphill grind of trying to keep the interest of the
local population - particularly difficult during the rains. The annual report
of the Community Development Officer, Mungwi, spoke most favourably of
the group and he is considering its upgrading to a community development
sub-centre. Carpentry classes are going well, and some bricklayers and
carpenters have been sent on courses to Mungwi. The staff are being
encouraged to minimise their dependence on Mungwi as a parent body
and, as they become more firmly established, to make their present site a
base for development work in the field throughout this Lungu area.
Difficulties were encountered at first in the self-help housing scheme as
some private jealousies affected mutual co-operation, but the aims are now
understood and successful results have begun to unite the people in a
working spirit. It is hoped to build a Community Development Assistant's
house in the near future.
The Chief envisages his Musumba as an attraction to traders and that the
proposed township will be the next stage in the progress towards economic
take-off. One cannot but admire his enthusiasm and ambition, but there are
too many difficulties. Communications and the new road to Chikwekwe are
dealt with elsewhere (Annexure VII). Trade is at present negligible. There
are exceptionally few stores in his area - 5 at the Musumba and only 9 in
other parts - all of very low standard; none of them ever had anything I
wanted, but I am not judging them by this criterion alone! The basic need is
for a wider circulation of money, for at present there is insufficient money in
the villages to make any general trading store a going concern.
With regard to traders from outside there is nothing to attract them except
in the local agricultural produce. One cannot base a local economy entirely
on tobacco and coffee, and thought should be given to the export of
groundnuts also, which could be grown on a larger scale and for which I
am told there is a market as close as Kasama. Livestock could also be
considered in the same context. The Kasama Marketing Union did come
here last year to buy local produce but the villagers, unaccustomed to sales,
expected a fortune at their first attempt and refused the reasonable buying
prices of the Union. I noticed this myself on tour, that they had no
experience of outside price values. If the people of the Musumba area could
concentrate on cash crops for sale outside the area this might help; as this
area is too heavily populated for citemene (see Annexure X) staple foods
could be bought from the outlying villages. This at least would circulate
money from outside through the Musumba to the villages (and back to the
Native Treasury in tax!); but the prospects are not good.
The only other ideas put forward in the recent past have been the sale of
work from the women's welfare and home-craft section of the extension team's
activities, and furniture. There is not likely to be much market for the woollen
garments and the output would be minimal, but it is better than nothing and
anyway the women should be encouraged in these affairs as much for their
education as for trade. There are insufficient sawyers and carpenters in the
area for furniture or any other product of timber at the moment, but it is of
course hoped that the extension team will improve this situation. Again there
remains the problem of finding an outside market. On tour I noticed that the area, being at the headwaters of many rivers, is very rich in mishitu in which
there appears to be plenty of excellent timber. Although these must of course
be rigorously protected, I feel that there may be possibilities for controlled
exploitation of their resources if closely supervised by the Forestry Department.
Transport difficulties would not be great as the main road along the watershed
is within easy reach of the mishitu.
The bottle store, market and tea-room are not very successful. There is not
enough money to provide them with custom and the bottle store has only been
used once since it was a polling station for the elections in December.
Annexure VII; COMMUNICATIONS
This area is served by one spinal road running north-south to link the
Mporokoso-Kasama and Luwingu-Kasama roads. It also serves as a shortcut
between Luwingu and Abercorn and between the two divisions of Lungu
territory. It is a very well-built District road, following the line of the
watershed all the way, and needs very little maintenance. An all-weather
road, it has survived the rains better than any other in the District, owing to
its good siting and lack of traffic. Two cul-de-sacs leading off it are Native
Authority responsibilities: the two miles to Vincent Bulaya and the three
miles to Mukupa Kaoma. The 15-mile road to Chewe School has not yet
been gazetted. Two culverts on the main District road were repaired at the
end of the tour, with local labour. They need only more ballast.
Village paths were all in good condition, and here again the Chief insists on
a high standard. Rains have naturally taken their toll on a number of bridges
and these will be rebuilt in April. There is a fair amount of cycle traffic (traders
and others) between Mukupa Kaoma and Kapatu and Shibwalya Kapila, and
also southwards from Mukupa Kaoma to the Lubushi vicinity.
The Central African Road Services (CARS) bus runs twice a week in each
direction between Kasama-Kapatu-Mukupa Kaoma-Chitoshi-Luwingu. It
carries little traffic. In 1960 a service was started between Abercorn and
Luwingu, but last year owing to lack of custom this service was suspended
and passengers travel via Kasama. Mukupa Kaoma has no postal service, although the bus calls there. There is a private bag at Chitoshi, and a
Kapasu has to be sent there every week to collect and deliver. The Native
Authority clearly needs a second private bag at the Musumba and this is
included in this year's estimates.
For many years it has been proposed to build a road from the Musumba
to Chikwekwe in Chitoshi's area, where there is already a road leading to
the main Luwingu-Kasama thoroughfare. This will shorten the route to
Kasama by nearly 30 miles and is primarily deSigned to encourage trade.
It is planned for 1964, and the touring party considered the general line of
the new road and the possible siting of the two bridges needed.
Annexure VIII; HEALTH
The general health in the villages toured is good. The number of cases of total
blindness in the area could not have been more than half-a-dozen, and only
two lepers were noted, both of whom had been treated at Kabalenge in
Kawambwa District. Instances of malnutrition or protein defiCiency among the
children were minimal, which was surprising in view of one of my comments
in Annexure IV. There have been no known cases of smallpox since 1958.
Two outbreaks of measles were encountered during the tour. At one
village we found all the children present were suffering from it and had been
treated with local muti; three had died. I was shown with some pride by an
old matriarch how she had soaked kangwa leaves and applied the solution
to the eyes and into all the orifices of the body. Though ignorant of the
properties of the kangwa, I could see the effect on the children: one was
already half-blind and was sent to Luwingu immediately, and all the others
were badly affected in their eyes. The local medicine-man still very much
exists; some charge fees and are therefore thought more skilled.
Hygiene in the villages was generally good, and the Chief is keen on a
high standard in this. Every house and latrine was inspected by a Kapasu
and notes were made. I have already indicated (in Annexure Ill) that, on
occasions when hygiene was obviously below standard, no action was
taken apart from a reprimand and the matter was left for future inspection. The new Dispensary at Mukupa Kaoma is almost complete and only
needs plastering and painting. The Native Authority received a grant of
£200 from the Provincial Native Treasuries Fund for roofing the building.
All the labour on this project has been voluntary, and has been provided
either by learners from the nearby Rural Development extension team or
by villagers - brick-burning, bricklaying and carpentry. The Administrative
Secretary is planning the finishing touch which will be a 10'x16' kitchen
behind. A dispensary has long been needed in this area where the nearest
medical services are either at Luwingu (63 miles) or Mporokoso (72 miles).
The Provincial Medical Officer has approved in principle the posting of an
Assistant to Mukupa Kaoma, and a house has just been completed for him.
The Native Authority has a drug box which contains only bandages, plaster,
iodine and Epsom salts. One Kapasu has been trained as an itinerant
Medical Orderly but is very unsatisfactory. A more useful person is the new
Court Member, John Musonda, who has been training and working for 14
years as a medical orderly in Tanganyika and S.Rhodesia, is qualified to give
injections and might be of some assistance in the new Dispensary.
Comments on Annexure VIII above by the District Commissioner
The matriarch mentioned in the second paragraph would presumably be
liable to prosecution under Section 16 of the Blind Persons Ordinance, but
education is clearly the best way of dealing with such practices. It is hoped
that the Provincial Information Officer will run a campaign later in the year,
to follow up a previous campaign of 1960 and to promote the work of the
Mporokoso Blind School.
The Provincial Medical Officer has regretfully announced his inability to
staff the new Dispensary in the next financial year. The Native Authority
plans, however, to employ a man who resigned from the Territorial se Nice
rather than be transferred to Federal terms, and the PMO has agreed to
give him refresher training. Once the Dispensary is complete, a Special
Warrant will be submitted to cover this unforeseen commitment. The new
Dispensary will meet a long-felt need.
Annexure IX; GAME
Hardly any game was seen during the tour. However, there was reported
to be a lot in the extreme south-east of the area, which perhaps accounts
for the reluctance of small villages there to move to otherwise preferable
sites. Lions frequent the central area and one village had to move because
of their incursions. Monkeys are a nuisance around the gardens in certain
parts, and numerous traps for them were seen, as well as small camp sites
for the more systematic drives against them.
There is an abundance of game in the uninhabited western part of the
Chief's area, outside the area toured, by the headwaters of the Kalungwishi
and opposite Kawambwa District. The Chief was keen that this area should
be demarcated as a Game Reserve and, after discussions in the full Lungu
Council at Abercorn, the idea was put to the Game Dapartment. I
understand that the Department considered that it would have to be run by
the Native Authority as their own affair and, since they had no funds to
maintain the necessary staff, the idea was temporarily dropped. The Chief
is still very keen on this matter, remembering how well stocked his whole
area was in his not so distant youth, and would welcome an opening for
fresh discussions on the topic.
Comments on Annexure IX above by the District Commissioner
I am paSSing a copy of this Annexure to the Game Officer, Mporokoso,
and the possibility of a Private Game Area will be discussed with him. The
Native Treasury is certainly in no position to provide funds at present but
future developments may make it possible to employ some Game Kapasus.
It would be unfortunate if the Chief's enthusiasm were frustrated for this
Annexure X; POPULATION
The population of Chief Mukupa Kaoma's area is concentrated in the
extreme north along the tributaries of the Luangwa and in the south-east in
the upper basin of the Lukulu. As a whole, this is the most thinly populated of the Chiefs' areas in Mporokoso District, with 3.7 persons per square mile;
but within a four mile radius of the Musumba there was found to be a
resident population of about 700. That is 14 persons per square mile. The
centre and west are entirely uninhabited, so that a natural population
division can be made between the Luangwa and Lukulu sections.
The statistics for the two parishes visited are attached; a reasonably
accurate assessment of the resident population has been attempted. A half
of the taxable males are working on the Copperbelt, and Chingola hits the
top of the popularity poll. It is noticeable, as always, that each village has
connections with one particular urban centre and most of its men will go
there to seek work. As expected, the figures for the Congo and Tanganyika
have completely slumped; this Lungu area has always had more
connections with Tanganyika for employment (probably due to tribal history)
while the Bemba of the District have favoured the Congo for similar
Most villages have moved site since the area was last toured, and one
had even moved into Chief Chitoshi's area. There is a general trend
noticeable for the people in the south-east to move out of their present area
over the border into Chitoshi's or Munkonge's areas where trade and
communications are much better. The Chief recognises this but is not
unduly perturbed; he is senior to Chitoshi in rank and regards them as still
in "his Lungu area". Emigrants to Munkonge are beyond his control.
In spite of the increase in houses of semi-permanent materials villages
will continue to move too often for them to be accurately sited on a map.
However, for present information a map is attached.
The forthcoming census and its aims were explained to every village.
A few villages are too small in total population, let alone in the number of
taxable males resident. The Chief rightly favours amalgamation in these
cases, and in general is keen to concentrate the people into fewer and
larger villages for administrative reasons. But he will take no autocratic step
against the wishes of the villagers, and is finding it hard to persuade them
to his views.