AFRICAN MIRROR REPORTER
SOUTH African president Cyril Ramaphosa has led the nation in paying a tribute to Queen Mantfombi Dlamini-Zulu, the widow of King Goodwill Zwelithini has passed away, days after being admitted to hospital and just over a month after the death of her husband.
The Amazulu Royal Family announced yesterday that the Queen, the stand-in leader of the over six million Amazulu in South Africa, had passed on.
Ramaphosa said: “Personally and on behalf of government and all South Africans, I offer my sincerest condolences to the Royal Family and the Zulu nation. We extend our thoughts, prayers and hearts once more to the Royal Family who, in the midst of mourning the passing of the beloved King, are now called upon to bid farewell to the Regent in sadly short succession. We stand by the Royal Family and the nation in this hour of compounded grief.”
Inkosi Zwelivelile Mandela, the Chief of Mvezo, expressed his condolences, saying that South Africa has again been deprived of an important leader.
The KwaZulu-Natal provincial Premier Sihle Zikalala paid a warm tribute to the Queen. He said losing the pillars of the Amazulu Royal Family in such quick succession was extremely difficult to bear.
The Democratic Alliance leader in KwaZulu-Natal Francois Rodgers also offered the party’s condolences.
In a statement, Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, the traditional prime minister of the Royal Family, said: “It is with the deepest shock and distress that the Royal Family announces the unexpected passing of Her Majesty Queen Shiyiwe Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu, Regent of the Zulu Nation. This has taken us by surprise and left us utterly bereft. It is true that the Lord alone knows the days that He has allotted to each one of us. On behalf of the Royal Family, I wish to assure the nation that while we are all rightly grief-stricken, there will be no leadership vacuum in the Zulu nation. Further announcements on Her Majesty’s funeral and the necessary arrangements will be made in due course.”
The Queen was Zwelithini’s sixth wife and mother to Prince Misizulu, who many royal experts believe is the next King. She was also the sister to King Mswati III of eSwatini, formerly Swaziland.