AFRICAN MIRROR REPORTER
Amazulu Queen Regent Mantfombi Dlamini was interred at the dawn today at the KwaKhangelamakengane Palace in Nongoma, Kwazulu-Natal in a private ceremony attended only by those close to her.
Queen Mantfombi led the 12 millions strong Amazulu nation following the death of her husband King Goodwill Zwelithini. She was in the throne for just over a month before she passed on.
The KwaZulu-Natal provincial government, which honoured her with an official funeral, is hosting a memorial service for her where family members from KwaZulu-Natal and eSwatini will pay tribute to her. Queen Mantfombi was the sister to King Makhosetive III of eSwatini. The King did not attend her funeral in accordance with strict tradition which forbids monarchs from attending such events.
Speakers at the memorial service include President Cyril Ramaphosa, KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala, Prince Misizulu Zulu, the apparent heir to the throne, Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, the traditional prime minister of the Amazulu monarch and other family members. The memorial service will be attended by several dignitaries including former president Jacob Zuma.
Her burial comes at the back of deep divisions that have emerged in the royal family since her death. This has led to an intervention by the national and provincial governments, who have pleaded for peace and unity.
Dr Nkosazana Zuma, the Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister and KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala this week met members of the royal family after one of King Zwelithini’s widows went to court to stop the execution of his will.
The meeting also follows a public spat between Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, the traditional prime minister of the royal family and the late King’s siblings. Buthelezi has publicly disclosed that some members of the royal family had held meetings about the succession. He also revealed that doctors had found poison in the liver of Queen Dlamini-Zulu, who died a week ago and will be buried on Thursday.
Buthelezi further described as shameful, the decision by one of the King’s widows, Queen Sibongile Dlamini and her children to challenge the late monarch’s will.
These did not go down well with the late King’s siblings – Princess Thembi Ndlovu and Prince Mbonisi – who expressed disappointment at Buthelezi’s conduct and claimed that they were being blamed for the late Queen’s death. Princess Thembi said Buthelezi time as the traditional prime minister was up.
After a meeting with members of the royal family, Dlamini-Zuma said the royal family was going through a difficult period after losing three senior members of the royal family in a short space of time. She called for stability. “If the royal family is stable, then the people are stable,” she said.
Zikalala said: “Our plea is that the members of the royal house must sit together and discuss the matters internally.”
He appealed to all citizens to pray for the royal family “as it navigates these extraordinary times”.