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Visit Museums and discover Zambia’s heritage prods Victoria Chitungu-Phiri

Visit Museums and discover Zambia’s heritage prods Victoria Chitungu-Phiri

September 30
17:25 2018

Zeinab Badawi from BBC with Lusaka National Museum Director Victoria Chitungu-Phiri Picture by Ashton Kelly Bunda Zambia 2018

By Ashton Kelly Bunda and Derrick Sinjela in Lusaka, Zambia

Lusaka National Museum Director Victoria Chitungu-Phiri has bemoaned the underutilization of museums by indigenous Zambian people as heritage facilities act as places of learning, teaching and entertainment.

Ms.  Chitungu-Phiri has lodged a complaint that it is rare to find ordinary citizens visit the Lusaka Museum and such facilities countrywide to go and learn about Zambia’s rich history.

Northern Province Minster Brian Mundubile

Zambia through Northern Province Minister Brian Mundubile and Permanent Secretary Elias Kamanga will  host the commemorate the Centenary marking the  end of the First World War on Sunday 25th November 2018 in Mbala.

With more than two decades (20 years) working for museums in Zambia, Ms. Chitungu-Phiri  said most of the people who visit museums  are school children following an educational arrangement by teachers as a learning curriculum.

“Visiting museums is not a boring venture as they are interesting visual art exhibitions and sculptures that teach about indigenous mysterious discoveries.  For instance, the discovering of fire ‘Energy’  here  at Kalambo in Zambia, which has brought rapid development the world over, cooking utensils and food preservers that the modern world improved into sophisticated technology today,” a proud and excited Ms. Chitungu-Phiri  explained.

Lusaka National Museum Director Victoria Chitungu-Phiri Picture by Ashton Kelly Bunda Zambia 2018

The Lusaka Museum Director urged local people to cultivate a habit of touring galleries as they are missing out not only knowledge, but fan in terms traditional entertaining stories and performing artifacts.

Ms. Chitungu-Phiri, who has a ‘Degree in Indigenous Studies’ obtained from Europe at the University Tromso in Norway, said as museums they are a research based institution documenting and keeping records not only what passed as history, but they take note of the present subject matters, which are topical like ‘Promoting Investment and Industrial Development’ across the country using the Northern Province Tourism Expo being held in tandem with the Centenary Celebrations marking of the end of the First World War in Mbala, Northern Province that will run from 20th to 25th November 2018, under the theme:  ‘Unlocking Investment Opportunity 100 years after the End of the First World War”.

The Lusaka National Museum Director once managed the Livingstone Museum in the Southern Province and was moved to work at Moto- Moto museum in Mbala, Northern Province before coming to Lusaka National Museum in the year 2017.

Lusaka National Museum Director Victoria Chitungu-Phiri in Zambia Picture by Ashton Kelly Bunda 2018

Ms. Chitungu-Phiri said according history Africa is a cradle of mankind as well as the originators civilization which started from Africa and then rose-up wards to the Europeans who took advantage of the knowledge and today they have made many scientific inventions.

The Lusaka National in conjunction with other museums will exhibit the replica of the prestigious “Broken Hill Man” at the forth coming Northern Province Tourism Expo and Centenary Celebrations of the end of the First World War.

The original skull “Broken Hill Man” was taken to England by the Britons between 1924 and 1925.

Ms. Chitungu-Phiri emphasized that mother Zambia has put into world record her contributions to the human race in terms of archeology the theory of humans evolution and that people at and abroad can learn a lot from our museums about the initial discovery of the prestigious ‘Broken Hill Man’ which most people in Zambia do not care about its whereabouts after learning about it in their junior secondary school history subject.

Lusaka National Museum in Zambia Picture by Ashton Kelly Bunda 2018

Ms. Chitungu-Phiri explained that the famous Broken Hill Man is the third stage of the modern human was classified in the species of Heidelbergensis, who happens to be the final stage is human race that is today.

Ms. Chitungu-Phiri narrates that the Lusaka National Museum will the first ever showcase evidence that the human race discovered fire in Zambia at Kalambo as a form of ‘Energy’ that has helped the modern world develop rapidly and has propelled industry to a larger scale as fire has made it easier to melt metals and converting other things to what people want them to be and western world is exporting them Africa as finished goods.

The Lusaka National Museum Director explained that galleries have beautiful artifacts of and original drawings of the Zambian ancestors coming up with the idea of rubbing things together to making a friction to come up with a heated solution ‘fire’ so that they could cook the meat after hunting animals.

Ms. Chitungu-Phiri said since the invention of fire in Zambia, the human race made a civilized revolution and started developing rapidly and came with electricity and lighting.

“Our culture as a Bantu Speaking People in Africa is not only about the language or the way we look, it is about the way our ancestors made their pottery, cooking utensils and the method they used to preserve food,” explained a nostalgic Ms. Chitungu-Phiri.

Broken Hill Man in Kabwe

General Von Lettow Vorbeck

Ms. Chitungu-Phiri said the forth coming Northern Province Tourism Expo is meant to promote investment and industrial development and  will coincide with the 100 years after the end of First World War from 20th to 25th November 2018.

“The museums will exhibit the pots intelligently created by Zambian ancestors with a carefully selected soils which produced a texture and thickness calculated as though they hand studied advanced chemistry and physics.

“Today, the western world has taken advantage this Zambian ancestral knowledge by being observant of the past works by our ancestor and borrowed ideas and advanced them to make monetary profits,” explained Ms. Chitungu-Phiri.

Ms. Chitungu-Phiri said Museums want to tell the story of the First World War through the eyes of local people so that they start appreciating the importance of the museums as institutions of learning research and entertainment.

Among the most important information the Lusaka National Museum will exhibit are pictures and promotion of the stories of Local soldiers of the great Chisenga Lumbwe,  who fought in both the First and Second World War at the First World War 100 Years Anniversary, to teach and re-write about end of the  “First world war “that the  fact of the matter is that  the  last shots of the war and surrenders took place in Zambia in Mbala at Lake Chila, situated in the Northern Province on 25th November 1918 and not in Europe as it is widely believed.

Ms. Chitungu-Phiri, who completed her high school at Mbala Secondary School before going to the University of Zambia (UNZA) Great East Road Campus, is a mother of four (4) children; two daughters and two boys.

Ms. Chitungu-Phiri two daughters are pursuing studies at the University of Zambia.

Northern Province Permanent Secretary Elias Kamanga

The Lusaka National Museum Director said her team is working round the clock to re-introduce other sources of information like the ‘Cenotaph’  a small building or monument where names of war veterans and other people who contributed to wars and colonial liberations are written or engraved.

Ms. Chitungu-Phiri is author of the book entitled ‘Vilengo’ which teaches on HIV and AIDS,  Marriage Rites and Puberty  said Zambians and the rest of the world should not miss out on the exhibition at the First World War Centenary celebrations and Northern Province Investment and tourism Expo on 20th November 2018 in Mbala as the Lusaka Museum team will travel with a  collection of the prestigious original  Telegram from Europe that was sent to the German  war leader Von Lettow-Vorbecks  commanding him to help end the first world war in Africa lead by Zambians in Mbala, near Lake Chila.

“A railway carriage in East Africa, accompanied by war uniforms  or military dress code  of the times as some of the documented details of the first world war.

General Von Lettow Vorbeck at war

The estimated cost of the allies was 60,000 lives and 72 million pounds, Von Lettow –Vorbeck never lost a battle marching in the heart of Zambia he did not realize the war in Europe was over until he  was met by local District Commissioner Hector Croad on November 4th and he was given a telegram outlining the details of the Kaiser’s surrender.

The message given to General Von Lettow Vorbeck was telegram sent to him which read,” Please send the following to General Von Lettow Vorbeck under a White Flag.

The English prime minister sent notice that on November 11th 1918 an Armistice was signed and that the fight should end on 11th November at 11 O’clock .

The Germans surrendered on Zambian soils and agreed March back to Abercorn now called ‘Mbala’ and there Germans became British prisoners.

The other important thing that will be exhibited from the Lusaka Museum gallery is the most cherished first world ‘Sword’ that Von Lettow Vorbeck  laid on the ground to signify  ‘Cease Fire’ and the ‘End of the First World War’ at Lake Chila in Mbala Zambia 1925 November.

Ms. Chitungu-Phiri  has urged Zambians to contributing to the museums by writing many Zambian stories current and many  un written ones that were told to them by descendants orally as well as making lectures in the gallery and singing  modern and old local music as the National Museum is one of the homes to entertainment.

Ms. Victoria Chitungu-Phiri also took pride in explaining that that this Lusaka National Museum hosted during the 10th (a decade) Anniversary of Zambia’s Third Republican President, the late Dr. Levy Patrick Mwanawasa who believed in rule of the Law to inspire young people to outstanding leadership and emulate the fore fathers.

Mbala

NOTE:

Mbala is Zambia’s most northerly large town and seat of Mbala District, occupying a strategic location close to the border with Tanzania and controlling the southern approaches to Lake Tanganyika, 40 km by road to the north-west, where the port of Mpulungu is located. It had a population of about 20,000 in 2006. Wikipedia
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