Excitement as Zumas prepare for wedding

2014-09-04 00:00

THE KwaNxamalala rural village in Nkandla is buzzing with excitement as preparations are under way for President Jacob Zuma’s nephew’s traditional wedding ceremony.

Khulubuse Zuma will wed his long-time fiancée, Swazi Princess Fikisiwe Dlamini, King ­Mswati’s niece, on September 13 and 14.

The Witness understands that men are busy repainting Zuma’s 50-room mansion, which is a stone’s throw away from his uncle’s controversial Nkandla homestead.

Women will begin the beer brewing process next week, according to a family relative.

The wedding plans are back on the cards after almost a year-long postponement. Zuma paid lobola of 100 cows in October last year.

City Pressearlier reported that the much-anticipated nuptials were delayed after Zuma apparently told his future in-laws that he wanted a traditional wedding only. Dlamini’s parents wanted her to have a civil wedding because it would prevent Khulubuse from taking a second wife. But it appears as though both families have settled on having a traditional wedding ceremony after all.

President Zuma’s younger brother, Michael, said: “Yes, the wedding is expected to take place next weekend. They have been going to Swaziland to finalise things but it is supposed to happen next week.”

A family relative living at the family homestead said they were “very excited, the bride party will be coming down to Kwa­Nxamalala”.

“Khulubuse wants a traditional wedding only,” said the elderly woman who asked to remain anonymous. “Six buses are coming down from Swaziland, we will be singing and dancing, people will be in their traditional regalia, it’s going to be wonderful,” she said.

She told The Witness that Khulubuse’s mother, known only as MaNgema, made the announcement on August 10. More than 5 000 people are expected to join the family in celebrating the wedding. “His father, Ngedlani, died when he was young, so ubaba, the president, is his father. We [the family] are happy that the wedding is finally taking place,” she said.

Veteran historian Professor Jabulani Maphalala said Swazi and Zulu customs are very similar.

“One of the differences is the regalia. The bridal party will arrive with grass mats, blankets and pillows and present them to the groom’s family,” said Maphalala.

• amanda.khoza@witness.co.za

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