Insika isidliwe ngumuhlwa
Literal EngThe wooden pillar has been eaten by termites.
Nxa umuntu othenjiweyo endaweni angasuka abantu bavame ukuhlupheka.
Eng When a strong and principled leader departs there may be a collapse of the values or systems.
The construction of traditional African huts involves the use of many poles around the wall, and one pillar at the centre of the hut. The centre pillar is used to hold the roof so it does not fall in. When the pillar is eaten by terminates, it fails to serve its purpose, which wil result in the collapse of the hut. Some people, such as a parent in a family or a leader in a community, are viewed as such a pillar of the family or the communities they lead. A good leader has a unifying factor in the community they lead. Their departure or loss of values may lead to disunity or disintegration of the community or a loss of values in the followers.
The proverb shows the dangers of over reliance on one person as a leader because their departure or loss of reverence may lead to a collapse of the system or venture. Families and communities should not depend on one person for provisions as starvation or disunity will ensue should the person leave the community.