King’s fiancée treated like a queen

2014-03-09 11:02
King Goodwill Zwelithini (Picture: AFP)

King Goodwill Zwelithini (Picture: AFP)

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Cape Town - Twenty eight-year-old Zola Mafu might only be Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini’s fiancée but for the past eight years she’s been living a right royal life – all at the taxpayers’ expense.

According to the Sunday Times, Mafu – who is 37 years younger than the monarch – reaps the same royal benefits as the monarch’s five wives. She is not only chauffeur-driven in a Mercedes-Benz E-Class but also reportedly gets a very generous allowance.

Mafu, a Swazi commoner, was 17 when she was selected to become Zwelithini’s sixth wife. She was placed with the king’s third wife, Queen Mantfombi to be “groomed” for the royal position. Mantfombi is Swaziland’s King Mswati III’s sister.

Sapa reported last year that the budget for the provincial department of the royal household had increased to R63m, of which R20m of the new budget was allocated for "the overall maintenance of the royal household infrastructure, including the refurbishment of palaces".

In the 2012/2013 financial year, KwaZulu-Natal spent R15m on renovating Zwelithini's palaces.

In 2012, a
report quoting a trust set up for the Zulu monarchy claimed Zwelithini needed more money to keep his wives and about 20 children in the manner to which they were accustomed.

The king's Royal Household Trust was apparently run on a "shoestring" budget and was not sufficient, the trust told provincial authorities, according to the Sunday Tribune.

Over the 2011/2012, the trust had been allocated R12m from the then-R55m budget of the department of the royal household but apparently overspent it by R5.1m.

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