1. MONGU: The original name of the town that we know today as Mongu is “Mungu” a luyana names which means pumpkin. There were a lot of pumpkins which were been grown in abundance in that region, one of the farmers was a man called Ndui, as a result people could just pick them as they wished. It was declared a district under the name Mongu-Lealui, in 1935 by the Governor of Northern Rhodesia, Hubert Winthrop Young, through Proclamation No. 5 of December 1934, which divided Northern Rhodesia into five Provinces. Later it was called Mongu-Lealui and now Mongu.

2. SENANGA: The original name of the town that we know today as Senanga is “Sinanga” a lozi name which means river bank. This is because the town is situated on southern part of the river bank of the Zambezi river. It was declared a district, in 1935 by the Governor of Northern Rhodesia, Hubert Winthrop Young, through Proclamation No. 5 of December 1934, which divided Northern Rhodesia into five Provinces.

3. KAOMA: The original name of the town that we know today as Kaoma is “Mankoya”. This name was given because there were Nkoya people in that area. It was declared a district in 1935 by the Governor of Northern Rhodesia, Hubert Winthrop Young, through Proclamation No. 5 of December 1934, which divided Northern Rhodesia into five Provinces. The name Kaoma was only given in 1964, by the UNIP government. The name Kaoma comes from a small stream called Kaoma-Ndonga. Kaoma-Ndonga meaning “a dry stream”.

4. KALABO: Kalabo district that we know today comes from a lozi word “Kalabo” which means a small paddling stick. This small paddling stick was used by a man called Namenda to paddle people on a river called Luanginga. Thereafter people started referring Kalabo ka Namenda meaning Namenda’s small paddling stick. Kalabo was declared a district in 1935 by the Governor of Northern Rhodesia, Hubert Winthrop Young, through Proclamation No. 5 of December 1934, which divided Northern Rhodesia into five Provinces.

 

5. SESHEKE: The district that we know today as Sesheke comes from the Luyana word “Sishekemene” meaning I cannot laugh. It come about when people went to fight Chief Mwanamwale, as they tried to stub him with a spear (muwayo), he started laughing and a fight ensured at that point. The Luyana passed a proverb saying “Sishekemene wa Mwanamwale na musunga”, meaning I cannot laugh like Mwanamwale who has brought conflict. It was declared a district in 1935 by the Governor of Northern Rhodesia, Hubert Winthrop Young, through Proclamation No. 5 of December 1934, which divided Northern Rhodesia into five Provinces. Initially it was a place where Mwandi district is located today.

 

6. SHANGOMBO: There are two version to this name, the first version is that Shang’ombo is a compound word from two Mbukushu words and these are “Sha” meaning “one who owns” and “Ng’ombo” or “ñombo” meaning “goats”. Shang’ombo therefore according to this version means, “one who owns goats.” The second version is that of the Mbunda people, according to this version Shangombo is equally a compound word with two mbunda words and these are “Sha” meaning “father to” and “Ngombo.” Shangombo therefore according to this version means “Father to Ngombo” or Ngombo’s father. SHANGOMBO was declared a district on October 23, 1997 by the then President Frederick Chiluba. Before that, this area, which included Sioma district as we know it today, was all part of Senanga and many people referred to it as Senanga West.

7. LUKULU: The name that we call Lukulu today come about when King Lewanika went for hunting purposes in that area called Nangula. As he was been asked about his area of jurisdictions, he answered in Luyuna saying “Litunga lwange likulu” meaning my land is big. The Mambowe changed the name from Likulu to Lukulu. It was declared a district around 1964 when Zambia got independence.

8. SIOMA: The word SIOMA comes from the lozi word Lioma which means the Litunga’s royal drum which Mwanambinyi got from the Mbukushu people. At one point one of the royal drum was not made well. And people called it Sioma instead of Lioma. Sioma was declared a district in November, 2012 by the late President Michael Chilufya Sata.

9. KAFUE: The name Kafue comes from the ILA name Chiubwe meaning a river with a lot of Hippos. The white man failed to pronounce Chiubwe instead pronounced it as Kafue. It takes its name from a small tributary of Kafue river. Kafue National Park was established in 1924 after the British colonial government moved the traditional owners of the area, the Nkoya people of chief Mwene Kabulwebulwe, from their traditional hunting grounds into the Mumbwa District to the east.
10. ITEZHI TEZHI: The word Itezhi tezhi comes from the Lozi word Mezhi a tezhi meaning the water is full. Another version has it that Itezhyi tezhyi means a slippery rock, according to the Ila traditional folklore, this rock is believed to have been located in Chief Musungwa’s area where Itezhi tezhi dam was constructed between 1974 and 1977. The area was initially a sub-centre of Namwala district before it was declared a district in Southern Province in 1997. Late President Michael Sata realigned the district to Central Province in 2012 in an effort to improve service delivery in the area.

11. ZAMBEZI: The district that we know today as Zambezi was initially called Balovale meaning “the Luvale”. It was opened in 1907 a sub-district of Barotseland. This was because the agreements Lewanika had signed with the British South Africa Company (BSAC) gave the Company the right to administer all of Bulozi and its dependencies. It changed its name from Balovale to Zambezi around 1966 in an attempt to defuse tensions between the main groups and the government of the newly independent country.

12. LIVINGSTONE. The word Livingstone that we know today comes from the man called David Livingstone. He was the first person to travel to the Victoria Falls. In the local Kololo language, the falls was called Mosi-oa-Tunya – meaning “the smoke that thunders”. David Livingstone was transported by the local people to an island on the edge of the Victoria Falls, and it was from there that he first saw the Victoria Falls. This island is what is now known as Livingstone Island. David Livingstone named the waterfalls after Queen Victoria, who was the queen of Great Britain at that time. Livingstone town was founded in 1905 at a safe distance from the then swampy banks of the Zambezi. In 1907 it became the capital of what was known as Northern-Western Rhodesia. In 1911 it became the capital of Northern Rhodesia, what is today called Zambia. Today it is Zambia’s tourist capital.

13. NALOLO: The word Nalolo came about as a result of people making “man`ele (Maolo)” which they used to build Princess Makwibi’s palace. So Nalolo comes from “Maolo”. Nalolo was declared a district in November, 2012 by the late President Michael Chilufya Sata.

14. LUAMPA: Luampa was declared a district in Novermber, 2012 by the late President Michael Chilufya Sata. Initially it was part of Kaoma.
15. MWANDI: Mwandi was declared a district in December, 2013 by the late President Michael Chilufya Sata. Initially it was part of Sesheke district.
16. SIKONGO: Skongo was declared a district in November, 2012 by the late President Michael Chilufya Sata. Initially it was part of Kalabo district.

17. MITETE: Mitete was declared a district in November, 2012 by the late President Michael Chilufya Sata. Initially it was part of Lukulu district. Before the declaration of Mitete as a district it used to be called Lukulu West constituency, the Zambezi River divided the district into two parts.
18. NKEYEMA: NKeyema was declared a district in December, 2013 by the late President Michael Chilufya Sata. Initially it was part of Kaoma district.
19. MULOBEZI: The word mulobezi is a kololo word which means “sleeping”. Mulobezi was declared a district in 2013 by the late President Michael Chilufya Sata. Initially it was part of Sesheke district.
20. LIMULUNGA: The word Limulunga means place of rumors. Limulunga is one of the two compounds of the Litunga, King of the Lozi people. It is his dry palace. It lies on high ground at the edge of the Barotse Floodplain of the Zambezi river, about 15 km north of the town of Mongu and 21 km east of the main channel of the river. Limulunga was declared a district in December, 2012 by the late President Michael Chilufya Sata. Initially it was part of Mongu district.
OTHER PLACES:
1. KATIMA MULILO: Tradition has it that the Katima Mulilo, (the name translates as ’tima mulilo or quench the fire‘), was used long before to describe the experiences of canoe men who had to ‘shoot’ the fast-flowing rapids; At low water especially a particular channel towards the left bank had to be negotiated on the route down.. This channel contains a particularly mean rock onto which canoes were always swept by the powerful waters unless expert care was taken. The unwary were capsized by the impact and the firebrand that they always carried from spot to spot, ongoing ashore to get their fires lighted (as matches were not available), were extinguished. Katima Mulilo is in Sesheke district.
2. NANGWESHI: It means the spears that the Luyana and the Kololo used during their fight. It is for this reason the poles found at the Litunga’s palace are called Lingweshi in remembrance of that event. Nangweshi is in Sioma.
3. SEFULA: The most interesting name is Sefula. The name Sefula comes from Sifulansi which means French. The first white missionaries to settle in Barotseland where the Paris missionaries who spoke French and the mission was called Keleke ya Sifulansi by locals meaning French mission or place where French is spoken and later distorted to Sefula. It is in Mongu district.

4. NAMUSHAKANDE: It comes from Namushi wa Kende. It was a woman who used to cultivate a lot of sweet potatoes and vegetables. But when the white men arrived they failed to say Namushi wa Kende and turned it into Namushakande. It is in Mongu district.
5. MATEBELE: Means the land of the Ndebele people. It is in Sioma district.
6. LEALUI: Lealui is a Luyana word which means, “for the Luyi.” Lealui Village is the traditional administrative capital for Barotseland. It is found in the Zambezi flood plains and lie 17 kilometers southwest of the winter capital of Limulunga; and about 16 kilometers west of political headquarter of Mongu. Lealui was first identified by King Sipopa around 1864. He camped there briefly. In 1876, King Lubosi Lewanika established Lealui as a permanent capital of the Lozi Kingdom. It is in Mongu district.

7. SOLI SA MBETA: It comes from MUOLI WA MBETA Literally meaning the wife of the King. The wife was left there and faced hunger. That is how the concept of Kashimani ka nalolo literally meaning the boys of nalolo to mean hunger. It is in Sioma district.
8. MAKONO: The word Makono is a Luyana word which means “Tali” a baby rapper or chitenge baby rapper. Every new King has to go to Makono to be born again or be born new before been put in a palace. It is there that further instructions are given to the new King about the nation of Barotseland and its people. It is in Mongu district.
9. BAROTSELAND: It means the nation of the Lozi people.

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