Kenneth Balenga

Kenneth Balenga

The story of Namakambwa

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Kenneth Balenga is the only man in the family and he is taking care of his four children as well as his siblings. He got into this trade through his grandfather when he was 13 years old. For 28 years now he has worked as a sculptor of wood and he likes ebony because it has a nice colour and is a strong wood that will last.Kenneth selected the theme of the story of Namakambwa because it reminds him of his grandfather who used to tell him about this story whenever he was carving the sculptures. 

 “I feel the theme is very important because it talks about the Namakambwa who was of the Leya people and how she used to take care of the area called Shungu Namutitima which means -The smoke that thunders.”In traditional storytelling, Namakambwa was a chieftainess’s spy who was used to alert the Chieftainess called Bedyanga of the Leya tribe, when he saw anyone strange around the area of the Victoria Falls or Shungu Namutetema which means – The smoke that thunders. Around the seventeenth century and towards the early eighteenth century, when Mukuni N’gombe arrived at the Victoria Falls, he met Namakambwa the care taker of the Victoria Falls who found that the Mukuni was looking for fertile land. When he found that the Chieftainess was single they decided to get married and therefore became the rulers.

 “My life will never be the same again with my work being erected at the Civic Centre, because my art work will put Zambia on the world map”


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