56 'B' Street ~ Fingo Village ~ Makhanda (Grahamstown) ~ South Africa 6139

Tel: +27 73 664 9849 / +27 63 188 8082

Mail: czoemda61@gmail.com


Support for the Lobengula & Mandela Literature (ART) Exhibition

Banking Details: Standard Bank Account Name: King Lobengula Foundation NPC Account number: 081972784 Branch: Grahamstown | Code: 050917 Branch code for electronic payments: 051001 Swift address: SBZA ZA JJ


The King Lobengula Foundation is to host the Lobengula and Mandela Exhibition at the Princess Zila Museum starting from the 18th of July until 28th September Heritage Month 2019.
The Foundation has been working with some of the Schools in the township and we have prioritized our Mandate at this point in time to bring Literacy Programmes that are aligned with their Curriculum.
Our aim is to bring Literacy Workshops into the Township, and make our People especially the children aware of such facilities as resourceful and accessible to All. This also forms part of the #HeritageResourcesRegeneration_CleanUp, which has a mission to restore and preserve National Heritage Sites, whilst Promoting Edu-Tourism in the Township.
N.B. Please visit our Facebook pages: King Lobengula Lodges & Tours or Kwa-Ndancama Heritage


DIRECTORS: Mr. Sizwe Mda; Mrs. Nomso Mda; Mrs.Rose Williams; Mr. Ramie Xonxa
Ms. Ntombekhaya Tezani; Mrs.Sizeka Magagula; Mrs. Charisse Evans…

Museum Exhibition/s – Women’s Month

56 ‘B’ STREET ● FINGO VILLAGE ● MAKHANDA, SA ● 6139 ● +27 73 664 9849/ +27 63 188 8082 ● czoemda61@gmail.com


The King Lobengula Foundation is planning to host Exhibitions during the month of August 2019 in honour of Women of Africa. The concept is to nominate those Women, single or married who are working for their families, coming from all different fields and walks of life.
The Foundation has chosen to work and collaborate with some of the Learning Institutions and Businesses to make these exhibitions a success. We are inviting each child to draw a face or write a short story about their own Heroine, whether it should be their mother or someone in the Community. It should be no longer than a paragraph [10 lines] in length. The children are given the choice to either draw a picture or and write a short story. The finished material will then be displayed at the Princess Zila Lobengula Museum for the Month of August 2019. At the end of the month a panel of Judges will then chose the most outstanding Works of Art. And also the most outstanding citizens in different categories will be selected as the Women of the Month, and that will be displayed at the Museum permanently as a source of inspiration to the Young generation.
We therefore seek your support and assistance to make this Exhibition possible, and without your collaboration the Foundation would not be able to encourage the children in our Community to be active during holiday seasons.
The King Lobengula Foundation would therefore like to invite each School or Participant from the Community to join forces to bring on this PEACE & UNITY Theme Exhibition starting on the 9th of August 2019 @ 12pm till 2pm. We specially invite the Grade 6 & 7 School children to be the most participants, but the Community is also welcomed to be part of the Exhibitions.
The #PEACE&UNITY Exhibition will continue until the Heritage month, with the follow up of FUN DAY, Planned for the 24th of September 2019.
The King Lobengula Foundation with Ntaba Maria Primary School would be hosting a FUN DAY, that will kickstart with a Marathon from Mt.Zion Heritage Park to Egazini, where different Sports Activities would take place, hence we are inviting each School to send learners to be part of this “Reconciliation Day”.

Rhodes hidden living relics found in Makhanda [Grahamstown]

Foot Trails left behind by Colonialism.
The King Lobengula Lodges and Tours would Entertain a visiting Adventure Tourists to an exciting  1.5km Foot Trail around the Township on a journey of “discovery” as you unravel the secrets left behind by the COLONIALIST’s, Sir Cecil John Rhodes on behalf of the Victorian Monarch.
The Lobengula Graves have been part of Kwa-Ndancama’s history for the past 125years and have left behind a rich Heritage that needs to be Cultivated and Protected for future Generations. Kwa-Ndancama Township was built in the 70’s, due to influx of Immigrants coming from nearby farms in hope of finding employment in the prosperous and growing culture of Grahamstown.
Due to Land and Native Acts of the day, the People were allocated pieces land to build houses on top of Old Queen Victoria Cemetery. The Township is a place of lost hope, hence the name Kwa-Ndancama. The Black People were promised that in time better houses and living conditions would be improved, but unfortunately to this day, the Township is still isolated from the rest of the City. There is total lack of Service Delivery and since the ‘promises’ never came through, the Community has to continue to endure the insufficiency of improper Infrastructure. The living condition have become a nightmare for most of the Local Dwellers, and the Lobengula Household [Princess Zila Lobengula Cultural Village] and the Graves are one of the Attractive Tourist’s Sites that the Community can point as their own in spite of the circumstances.
The Lobengula Graves are located in the midst of this ‘morally’ broken Community and subsequently they have formed a valuable Landmark which is one of the little Valuable Assets to be found in this Area.
The Tourists have described the gravesite as a “hidden treasure”, which needs to be unveiled to the whole World, especially with the current Cultural Affairs taking place in Zimbabwe. The Site has left many astonished including students from nearby Schools and Colleges, and Rhodes University. The Visitors have been left with wonder on the circumstances that led to the heir to be lying in such a dilapidated site, without care or been given the status it deserves, a monumental recognition.
The Community and All who have vested interest in the history of African People who became the victim of Colonialism have been wandering why such a relic from our past is left in a shallow grave without recognition from the Government and Society. Hence, it has been a priority for the King Lobengula Foundation to revive the legacy of A.N.L.Mzilikazi “Iqanda le Ngwenya” [Crocodile’s egg], and he is crying out loud to be heard. It is the duty of the Foundation to revive the forgotten past of our People and to fulfil the dream of UMakhumalo, Princess Zila Gladys Lobengula Mda the last daughter of Rhodes Lobengula to pass away last year in May 2018. It is this reason as instructed by MAKHUMALO to live behind a legacy for the Community of Kwa-Ndancama, who are the beneficiaries of this Royal Treasure and the world to see and learn. It is this reason that a Monument has been Proposed as one the Developments in our envisaged Plan to bring pride in a hopeless Community. This initiative will also improve the quality of living for the Community by bringing more Visitors into the Township, and inevitably putting the Township in the world map, as a Prime site for Tourist’s and Academics.
It would be an ideal situation to ultimately give to the “graves” the status quo they deserve after a century of alienation from their Tribesmen. And that would restore the dignity of the Ndebele People, and bring solace to the spirit of the deceased lying far from home in Matabeleland, Zimbabwe. Makhanda Local Community deserves the Right to learn and understand their history, and that would help the Young still growing to respect and protect their own Heritage Resources.
By Sizwe Mda

The fall of Lobengula, King of the Matabele

Evelyn Waugh, who visited Bulawayo and the Matopos in 1864, likened the Matabele King to a deeply tragic figure from Shakespeare, combining as he did elements of Lear, Macbeth and Richard 11. It is an apt comment evoking, as it does, the picture of a figure, irreversibly caught up in the toils of history and singled out by the Fates for Nemesis. During the height of his powers, Lobengula ruled over some of southern Africa's richest and most sought after lands. He was the commander of a superb army modeled on the impis of the great Shaka Zulu and subject to the same ferocious discipline. Lobengula was a shrewd statesman and but for the European arrival in Africa Lobengula's dynasty might have continued unbroken. Instead he has passed into posterity largely unrecognized, his lands forfeited, and his achievements strangely neglected.
Lobengula succeeded his father Mzilikazi in 1870. It was a time of discovery of gold and diamonds in South Africa and already prospectors, traders and hunters were flocking northwards from Johannesburg drawn by tales of a land and riches across the Limpopo river.
During the early part of his reign Lobengula befriended many of the white missionaries and hunters who arrived in his kingdom, allowing the London Missionary Society to establish centres near his capital at Bulawayo whose name is derived from the Matabele word bulala, to kill. He developed a special friendship with the hunter and naturalist Frederick Courteney Selous, whose total honesty he greatly admired and to whom he referred admiringly as "a young lion".
However, as prospectors and concession hunters of various nationalities continued to flood into the region, Lobengula became uneasily aware of the Great Powers behind them who were casting increasingly covetous eyes on his lands and who would one day invade them. Illiterate he may have been but he was also astute and highly intelligent and the defeat of Cetshwayo and his Zulus had not been lost on him.

No African army, however powerful and self-disciplined could hope to win against an enemy, armed with artillery and Maxim guns. The answer, as he saw it, was to temporise with the Europeans and postpone decisions whilst conceding as little as possible in the process. More than once King Lobengula compared his position to that of a fly in front of a chameleon that "advances slowly and gently, one leg at a time until he finally darts out his tongue." Very well then. Since he could not hope to win on the battlefield he would shield his people by diplomacy, playing off the English, Germans, Afrikaaners and Portuguese against one another.
By 1888 however, Cecil John Rhodes, already a multi-millionaire through gold and diamonds, was making plans to move into Matabeleland, the lynch-pin for his grand design to extend the British Empire from the Cape to Cairo. As befitting a man whose meteoric career had taken him to managing director and the largest shareholder in De Beers, Cecil Rhodes was not exactly overburdened with scruples or sensibility. A mining or lands concession needed to be extracted from the Ndebele King and the means were secondary to the result.
To secure this priority Cecil Rhodes dispatched a delegation of three men, led by Charles Rudd, a member of De Beers and an expert in sorting out mining claims. The party arrived in Bulawayo in September 1888, impatient to settle matters quickly and return to Cape Town. They had underestimated Ndebele court etiquette however which required time for an audience to be arranged and so had to wait for nearly six weeks.

From the outset king Lobengula was deeply suspicious. He was only too aware that King Mbandezi of Swaziland had forfeited the major part of his lands through granting concessions to Europeans. Officially Rudd was asking only for mineral rights and emphasised that as Cecil John Rhodes had the total support of the British government this would guarantee Matabeleland protection from European colonialisation. How could he be sure though? Sooner or later they would want "land rights" and this as leader of the Ndebele he would not contemplate.
Quite possibly Rudd and colleagues would have gone away empty handed had it not been for the timely appearance of Sir Sydney Shippard, British Commissioner for Bechuanaland (now Botswana). Shippard, as the representative of Queen Victoria, was highly regarded by Lobengula and it was Sydney Shippard, together with a trusted missionary, Charles Helm, who finally convinced the king that Cecil John Rhodes really was to be believed and that this was the best way out of his dilemma with other concession seekers. At Helm's insistence, an oral translation of the agreement was explained to king Lobengula including assurances that no more than ten white men would be allowed to work in his country and that all their firearms would be surrendered on arrival.
And so it was that at midday on the 30 October 1888, trusting in the integrity of one of Her Majesty's appointed representatives and the word of a man of the cloth, Lobengula put his elephant seal to the agreement. He was soon to discover
that he had been tricked and although he dispatched envoys to England to intercede with Queen Victoria, by then it was too late. He had been duped into signing a document that contained few of the assurances promised to him during the negotiations and one which was to lead to the annexation of his country five years later by Cecil John Rhodes and troops of his British South African Company (BSAC).
When Lobengula, accompanied by his remaining impis, abandoned Bulawayo to the advancing columns of British South African Company soldiers early in November 1893 he left behind two Europeans, William Usher of the Salvation Army and James Fairbairn, a gold prospector. Both men had settled in his capital many years before and the king had expressly instructed his Ndebele warriors that they should be left unharmed. So it was that his reputation as a man of his word, remarked on by many of the early missionaries and hunters, was maintained to the end. Major Wilson and his troops were given the task of capturing Lobengula.
For over twenty years of his reign Lobengula was under constant pressure from government officials and prospectors seeking concessions. To resist them without provoking a war called for statecraft and cool nerves as well as skillful control of his warriors impatient to wash their spears in European blood. His last words to his people as he rode away northwards into exile come down to us with a defiant, even valedictory, ring. "You have said that it is me who is killing you. Now here are your new masters the white men coming. You will have to pull and shove wagons which under me you never had to do. Remember I never I wanted to fight with them and tried always to prevent it." .



King LOBENGULA Documentary "THE ROOTS"



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