FILE PICTURE: The magnificent Nalikwanda (Royal Barge), en route during the Kuomboka Ceremony of Barotseland

The date has not yet been announced and publicized, and mostly likely it might be on Saturday 7th or 14th April 2018.

Traditionally, the Prime-minister of Barotseland normally announces the date with one one month remaining.
The first week of Lyatamani (March) the date will be announced to the public.
The guest of Honour usually a foreign dignitary.

The Kuomboka/ kufuluhela national committe will hold the fundraising dinner across the kingdom and neighboring countries, in order to raise more funds for the ceremony.
Once the are done, the will convene and finalize with the Barotse Royal council.
And the date will be choosen, and it will be when the moon is full.

The Barotse Plains now slightly looks like a lake especially when viewing it from a distance on the higher land, as a result of the floods and rain water and it keeps rising on a daily basis submerging fields and some villages. With these rains pulling down across the kingdom for the past one week and few days.

Telling any first time visitor or tourist that in the dry season dust rise from the said plain might just think that it’s fiction
The largest black and white striped Nalikwanda (people’s boat) with the capacity of 180 paddlers from 120 was made last year and readily waiting to float on the waters taking the Litunga (Lozi King) from his summer Royal village in the plain called Lialui to his winter Royal Palace called Limulunga on the higher land.

Usually the Ceremony will start on the Thursday of that particurlar week and ending on Monday.

On Thursday, which is a night before the actual day, between 20 to 22 hrs, the Maoma drums will be beaten from Lialui Royal village confirming the need for people to get out of the water to the higher ground lead by the Litunga, this is what is called Kuomboka.
The beautiful sound of the said drum can be clearly heard 20 Kilometers away and the Litunga is the one who starts beating them in a process called “Kufulumuna”.
And then joined by others who know how to drum them.

A lot of people have really been looking forward to see the King or Litunga as he beats the large Maoma drums but we’re denied that chance previously because the people had no proper access road to Lialui except by water which was a challenge.

But this year’s for the very second time, a lot of people will want to go to Lialui as a result of the road branching into Lialui Royal village from the notorious Mongu to Kalabo road.
Considering the night time as well as high volume of traffic expected RATSA and Zambia Police Traffic section should work extra hard to control the flow of vehicles to and from Mongu to Lialui or otherwise.
Also on the Limulunga Royal road ( famous treason road) which has stayed for over good 3 years waiting to be constructed with their daily songs of promising “will construct it after the rain season.

This year, just like last year’s ceremony, the use of speed boats to ferry people from Mulamba Harbour in Mongu to Lialui will be less as people will just drive or use public transport or taxis as well as cycling or walking, so the need for traffic control cannot be overemphasized particularly on Thursday night and Saturday.
The challenge for those driving late might be parking space as a lot of vehicles are expected to be so many in Lialui this year as people will want to see the largest Nalikwanda as it starts off from Lialui to Limulunga Royal village.

And then quickly get to the other side to wait for six or seven hours to welcome and watch the King and his guest of Honour on the other side in Limulunga.

Meanwhile the traditional. And local artists will be showcasing and performances by Mbunga Artists such as Kas Nalu, Y. Coast, Mr. Kuutwa, Allanizo (Mwalimango) among others at Mongu Club and Limulunga to entertain the people as they wait.

The traditional dress for men is the African kilt known as Siziba like the Scottish skirt and the musisi for women as well as Walking stick for men and white bangles and red barlet called Lishushu.

If you’re looking for the musisi or Siziba traditional attire you better get in touch as soon as possible so that we help you get one on time.
Ours at BBN is ready and just polishing up our very flexible Ngomalume dance skills. When you’re in Rome do what the roman’s do, so any Tonga, Lunda, Lenje, or Kaonde man or woman who will not wear our traditional gear should be told to do so.

Kuomboka reminds us of our those days at primary school when teacher’s with a register would calling out the names of the pupils who are present.
It’s like a roll call were the Lozi’s from all over the world came together and it’s the time to meet as a big family.

Every real and passionate Mulozi treks back home to go and answer “present” when the date is announced.
We meet and cerebrate together with even non-Lozis who came from far and wide.

The men will dance Ngoma Lume while the women dance Liwale as the Litunga watches on the palace ground.

Some are bad dancers while others like majority of our staff here at BBN are good dancers while some people like that Mungu Fm CEO Mr Mukeya are still learning the skill up to date despite the many years He has been doing it and reporting live from the Nalikwanda as the first Journalist in the History of Barotseland to ever do that whenever the ceremony is held.

Anyway our job as BBN is before, during and after the Kuomboka ceremony is to coordinate the” live updates ” of the whole ceremony for the benefit of the residents, many visitors and tourists who want information on the proceedings, including those of you who are in diaspora.

Foreign journalists coming for this year’s ceremony especially for the first time kindly and quickly get in touch with us for other details as well as the dos and donts or guides.
Please Feel free to Ask, inbox us for queries.

This canes as a result of the death of one Kenyan Journalist who died on his way to Lialui when the boat he was traveling in capsized. It was quite unfortunate.

Further when you arrive in Mongu, Lialui or Limulunga Royal village and as you drive around, I request you to tune to Mungu FM Radio 88.5, Oblate Radio liseli, Lyambai Radio, Lukulu community Radio, at home, hotel room or in your vehicle and follow the step by step proceedings some which will not be covered here on BBN page.

Will keep updating you for your information, like we do on a daily basis from the day the 2018 Kuomboka ceremony date will be announced.

Last year’s kuomboka ceremony was showed on BBC, Aljazeerah , CCN, France24, Sabc, Znbc, Muvi tv, Ztv, Namibia, Btv etc.

Get ready…


  1. Some people might hide their thoughts and wishes about this year’s Kuomboka traditional ceremony. I want to put it on record that Kuomboka ceremony belongs to the Lozi people and not anybody else can attend to cause confusion. You will recall and observe that Lozi chiefs have never traveled to any traditional ceremonies of other so called chiefdoms unless those invited by international recognized ceremonies like those held in friendly neighboring countries or international events hosted by foreign countries. All should take note that Barotseland has no several chiefdoms like elsewhere in Zambia. The Litunga is the King, and each district has only one chief apart from Kaoma (Mankoya) out of courtesy to our brothers ,the Nkoya people have two chiefs ,the rest are either sub chiefs or indunas.Zambia is known to have several chiefs majority of who only qualify to be indunas.because they are responsible for few scattered villages in a given region.
    It therefore goes to say Barotseland does not recognize Zambian indunas as chiefs and therefore cannot be availed an opportunity to be invited as guests. In the same vein due to hooliganism and uncivilized behaviour exhibited by Zambian Political Parties in the past, Barotseland is not obliged to invite any political thugs at its ceremony regardless of status. However a blanket invitation is extended to tourists who are interested to witness this spectacular African ceremony and take pictures for their collection of world events and memories. Invitation can only be extended to the existing African Monarchies and special foreign dignitaries friendly to Barotseland .In the meantime there will be no guest of honour because it is purely a tourist attraction which does not require any political connotations or pomp.All tribal cousins and Lozi’s in the diaspora are free to donate generously to make the ceremony a success. Please take note that views expressed herein are from an individual Lozi who cherishes self determination of the Lozi nation under the kingdom of Barotseland. “Tukongote wa mwana Nongolo”

  2. Remember the first Barotse personages who served Zambia as humble men and those who betrayed Barotseland:

    1. Nalumino Mundia ,a true nationalist
    2. Munukayumbwa Sipalo ,a true nationalist.
    3.Mubiana Nalilungwe ,a true nationalist
    4. Jethro. Mutti a true nationalist.
    5. Author Wina ,a sellout
    6. Sikota Wina ,a traitor
    7. Dr. Kabaleke Konoso ,a true nationalist.


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