HomeEnvironmentThe Ba Lemba will always be of Jewish origin: Matchaba-Hove

The Ba Lemba will always be of Jewish origin: Matchaba-Hove

Burzil Dube

BEFORE delving into this week’s installment, Yours Truly is somehow “excited” that members  of the public have finally embraced the need of being vaccinated against Covid-19.

It is everyone’s ambition that we continue being inoculated against this pandemic, which is going to be prevalent for an unforeseeable future and whose mutation continues to bamboozle health experts.

There is need to continue heeding advice from those with the technical know-how of dangers associated by being not vaccinated against Covid-19 and whose consequences are everyone’s guess.

To those of religious disposition, there are numerous examples in the Bible where dire warnings were issued to those who would have failed to heed advice from the powers that be.

A good example is when God sent his servant Moses to go and plead with Pharaoh for the release of Israelites from Egyptian bondage as they were supposed to be settled in the Promised Land of Canaan.

Various plagues were unleashed on Pharaoh’s subjects until he agreed to let go the Israelites, who are today known in other Christian publications as Jews.

Now to this week’s installment.

And Yours Truly starts with a quotation taken from a previous column, which he wrote sometime in August last year concerning the Ba Lemba/Va Remba tribe and the umbilical connection with the biblical Israelites/Jews.

“There are 12 Zimbabwe Jewish (read Ba Lemba/Remba) clans that are said to be in existence today.

“However, Yours Truly is yet to decrypt if there is any relationship between these clans and the biblical 12 Tribes of Israel.”

This article was published on August 15, 2020 edition of The Standard.

That particular article was the simplistic adios to various Lemba articles that Yours Truly had written concerning this Jewish tribe whose majority of members are  settled in Mberengwa district following their migration from the Middle East.

Yours Truly has however made a simplistic volte-face, “courtesy” of, whose empirical knowledge of Lemba history that dates back from scriptural Jacob to modern day Chief Mposi is rather awesome.

To the uninitiated, Matchaba-Hove is among the country’s premier academics and does not need any form of introduction save to mention that he is a Lemba of the Tovakare clan or tribe.

This clan is reported to have played a major role in the construction of Great Zimbabwe stone edifice in Masvingo, which is among the country’s major tourist attraction places.

To those who are technologically savvy, a mere search on the worldwide web might do the trick on his academica background and other related data.

Incidentally, Yours Truly happens to be in one of the social media groups with the respected executive dean in the Faculty of Medicine at one of the country’s universities.

The medical doctor’s school of thought is that the Lemba did not have any form of totem during their migration from the Middle East.

However, the Zhou totem is usually associated with Lemba Jews and this could have been precipitated by their original type of business which was ivory.

In a lighter moment, the renowned academic admittedly said as a way of “contradicting” himself, totems were in existence the during biblical times and  was meant to avoid marriages from same families.

He went on to state that Jacob in Genesis 49 summoned all his 12 sons and gave them surnames such as Rueben, meaning first born, Judah (a lion), Zebulon whose meaning is sea, and Issachar (donkey), among others. This all brings us to origins of 12 tribes of Israel, which later cascaded Ba Lemba/ Remba who are currently divided into 12 houses or clans.

These were discussed extensively in previous Travelling and Touring columns where it generated lots of debate among the country’s various religious denominations.

At esoteric level, Matchaba-Hove explained that the 12 sons/tribes also represented a day’s 12 hours, 12 hours of the night, 12 months in a year as well as 12 signs of the Zodiac.

The list is endless.

These initial tribes were also a system of governance or some form of cabinet ministers whose designations might be tackled in future installments.

Yours Truly was taken aback upon learning that there were ministries such as that of Agriculture, Home Affairs, and Defence, among others.

There is need to decipher these biblical 12 tribes vis ‘a vis the current Ba Lemba clans such as Tovakare and others.

If you know, you know, as it will be untangled in the next column as Matchaba-Hove maintains that the Lemba are of the biblical Jewish origin.

Till we meet again in the next column.

Comments always welcome on: dubebasill@gmail.com or Twitter@DubeBurzil

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