Tshituni was originally made up of the following areas in Nzhelele:

  • Tshituni tsha Ntha (where Makhado township is situated);
  • Tshituni tsha Fhasi;
  • Ha-Mapila;
  • Tshirolwe;
  • Ha-Mabirimisa;
  • Mapakophele;
  • Divhani;
  • Ha-Gavhe;
  • Thembaluvhilo;
  • Tshiswenda;
  • Ha-Matidza;
  • Ha-Ratombo;
  • Ha-Mulelu; and
  • Ha-Ramavhoya.

The Netshitunis are Masingo, part of Vhasenzi who settled in Venda in the mid-1600s.  The family, led by Mapfumo, settled in Nzhelele and the area where they settled was full of mitu trees. The name Tshituni came from the mitu trees, and it means the place where mitu trees are in abundance. After Mapfumo became the ruler of Tshituni, he changed his family name to Netshituni, meaning the ruler/owner of Tshituni.

When Vhavenda were forcibly removed from areas in and around present-day Makhado town (Louis Trichardt), as well as the Luvuvhu River valley, most of them, together with their chiefs, settled in Nzhelele. The following are communities and their chiefs that were resettled in Tshituni:

  • The Tshifhefhe community, under chief Sinthumule, was forcibly removed from Tshifhefhe. Some members of the community settled at Ha-Sinthumule, while others settled at Tshirolwe;
  • The Vhalaudzi community of Makwatambani, under chief Makongoza, was accommodated at HaMugobi. Khosi Makongoza’s status was reduced to that of headman and he became the Vhamusanda (headman) of Ha-Mugobi, known today as Makongoza;
  • Khosi Matidze Mukwevho of Luonde, Luvhuvhu river valley, and his community were resettled at a portion of Tshituni tsha Fhasi where a new village was established and became known as HaMatidza. Khosi Matidze also lost his chieftaincy and became a headman of the newly established village of Ha-Matidza;
  • Khosi Mulelu of Ha-Mulelu (a few kilometres north of Makhado town) and his community were also resettled at a portion of Tshituni tsha Fhasi. A new village was established, and became known as Ha-Mulelu. Khosi Mulelu also lost his chieftaincy and became a headman of the newly established village of Ha-Mulelu;
  • Khosi Ramavhoya of Ha-Ramavhoya (next to Muraleni, Ha-Sinthumule) and his community also lost their land and resettled at a portion of Tshituni tsha Fhasi. A new village was created and became known as Ha-Ramavhoya. Khosi Ramavhoya also lost his chieftaincy and became a headman of the new village of Ha-Ramavhoya; and
  • Khosi Ratombo of Tshidzivhani / Ha-Ratombo, Luvuvhu river valley, and his community also lost their land and resettled at a portion of Tshituni tsha Fhasi. A new village was created and became known as Ha-Ratombo. Khosi Ratombo also lost his chieftaincy and became a headman.

Due to the fact that large portions of his land were used to accommodate communities that had lost their lands in Makhado and Luvuvhu River valley, Khosi Netshituni’s jurisdiction was greatly reduced. He also lost his chieftaincy and became a Vhamusanda (headman).

With the restoration of the status of all mahosi (chiefs) that lost their lands and reduced to magota (headmen), it’s time to restore the Netshituni chieftaincy.

Dzanani Township

A town and a township were built in the 1980s at Tshituni tsha Ntha (also known as Biyaba) by the then government of the ‘Republic of Venda’. The town was named Makhado, after Vhavenda’s legendary king, Makhado Tshilwavhusiku Ramabulana. The township was also named Makhado.

After Louis Trichardt was renamed Makhado, since Louis Trichardt was where Makhado’s main royal residence was located, Makhado township in Tshituni tsha Ntha was renamed Dzanani township.

A shopping centre at Dzanani Township (Tshituni Tsha Ntha)

Click to enlarge

Tshirendo / Praise

Dzulani zwanu Singo Rambau
Muthu wa Dzivha Ngoma la Vho-Tshikala
Tshikala wa mulenzhe vuluvulu lo luma thoho
Ndi Tshituni tsha Khosi Mapfumo na Dembe
Dembe washu mulila vhathu
U vha lila u do vha fha ni?

Mapila o pila vhathu
O pila zwivhi na zwivhuya o putela
Tshithotholwe tsha Vho-Nndwana
Thavha yashu ri khoda Nngweni ho edelaho vhahali vhukuma.

Ndi vha ha vhulungu vhutete vhu lunnzhedzwaho nga vha re na nzhele
Vha sina nzhele vha a vhu fhaladza
Ri Vhailafuri vhaila mutshila wa mbudzi.

Acknowledgements

  1. Netshituni Royal Council; and
  2. Shumani Netshituni.