Litunga Lubosi Imwiko II, the King of the Lozi people, came to Livingstone to join in the Livingstone Sports Festival. The Lozi people live in Barotseland, Western Province. Their land stretches for miles both sides of the Upper Zambezi River and includes vast floodplains which become like an inland sea during the rainy season. They are boat people who paddle the Zambezi with ease in their dugout canoes called makoras.
The Nalikwanda is the boat which the Litunga uses on the Barotse Floodplain to move him from Lealui, the summer residence, to Limulunga, the winter residence, during the Kuomboka Ceremony. Before his visit to Livingstone a smaller replica of the Nalikwanda boat was built so that he could be paddled along the Zambezi River near the Victoria Falls as previous Lozi kings have done before him. This year, because of the drought, the Kuomboka Ceremony was not held, so it was a real treat for Zambia to have him honour us in Livingstone with his presence in a ceremony named Kupuwana, which means ‘playing’.
Previous Lozi kings have visited Livingstone to parade along the Zambezi River. In 1947, during a visit by the British Royal family, the Nalikwanda was brought to Livingstone. There is a Youtube video on: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VcE87C18HSI. I do not have a licence to show it in this story, but you can ‘copy and paste’ to view it.