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The Lukhele Clan History – I am a Proud Lukhele

Since we all preparing for a long weekend, I’ve decided to share my history and meaning of my surname. The Lukhele clan is mainly found in a place in Eswatini (formerly known as Swaziland) called Ngobolweni and Nkiliji. Our clan came into existence during the rain of king Ngwane I. Ngwane had spies and two of them were brothers. One was Lukhele and the other one was Mdluli. Lukhele displayed his heroism when the Zulus

When he saw that the Zulus were too many for the Swazis to fight against, he suggested that all the men, including Ngwane I, should go and hide. (naboQomazitha waNgwane) When the Zulus arrived, he told them that all the men had been killed in previous wars. So the Zulus decided to do anything they desired with the cattle and women. The clan was then given a place at Ngobolweni. King Mbandzeni then married a girl from the Lukhele clan, but Inkhosikati laLukhele beat her mother-in-law and King Mbandzeni wanted to destroy the clan.

Chief Dambuza Lukhele then sent a group of men to go and apologize, thus the clan was saved, and thus the line: Nabonyoni isindvwa sisila kusuka (the bird that narrowly escaped death) Moreover, Chief Dambuza was believed to have had power over rain, and since he was buried under a hill near Ngobolweni, the people in that area are able to tell when it is about to rain since the hill becomes misty.

Hence the line: Nabomavovemvula The Lukhele clan were said to be great warriors. Chief Dambuza I was King Somhlolo’s indvuna (headman). During the Swazi / Zulu wars, King Somhlolo sent Dambuza to go and help Swazi warriors at Kaphunga Legazi in the battle at Lubuya River. This is where Dambuza showed his heroism by playing tricks when attacking the Zulus. At one time he attacked the Zulus at night and he was naked. He killed a number of the Zulu warriors and the Zulus, therefore, started to hunt for Dambuza. He went to some caves near an area called Khubuta.

The chief of kaPhunga Legazi honoured Dambuza by giving him an area to govern. Dambuza was buried in the cave which was a sign of honour as in Swaziland, not everybody can be buried in caves but only those with royal blood. The Lukheles were trusted by the Swazi Kings. Whenever something went wrong in the royal kraals they were called to find out what the trouble was and they would purify the royal kraal and leave it clean. Because they were useful to the king, they became very proud such that the king later had to beg them to the point of licking their sweat for their services. They are also known for being great liars.

They are said to have bought the lies from a tree belonging to Bhodo and they paid a calf for the lies they bought. So if you know anyone by the surname, make sure that you share to them so they know. Lukhele, Mhlanti wendlunkhulu


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