When their chiefly father died leaving only three daughters, the eldest of them, Silibaziso Mlotshwa, might have seemed the obvious choice to succeed to the Mvuthu chieftainship. But instead her uncle, Saunders Mlotshwa, got the nod from the government's district administrator. This followed a meeting of the Mlotshwa men at which they said a female chief ‘would be an insult’. Now, however, the high court in Bulawayo has ordered that the administrator propose the daughter’s name for the vacant position.
After the death of Zimbabwe’s Chief Nyangayezizwe Mvuthu Mlotshwa, the meeting called to discuss his successor turned into something else: it became an opportunity for local men to express strong views against women in positions of traditional leadership.