Court rejects Venda princess' challenge to throne

2016-12-15 09:57


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Thohoyandou – The Thohoyandou High Court on Wednesday dismissed VhaVenda Princess Masindi Mphephu’s bid to prevent her uncle from becoming king.

Mphephu had sought the court's intervention after she believed the royal family had overlooked her because she is a woman. Traditional and customary practices denied her right to be the queen of the VhaVenda, she argued.

She said when the Nhlapo commission of inquiry, which was tasked with investigating kingship, was dissolved in 2010, she had no way to remedy the situation.

She then took her uncle, Toni Mphephu Ramabulana to court over what her lawyer Dali Mpofu argued was gender discrimination.

Judge Ephraim Makgoba said the application was dismissed, and each party had to pay its own costs. He said he would provide reasons for his ruling later.

The Nhlapo commission, which completed its work in 2010, recognised the VhaVenda and six others as legitimate traditional royal houses.

It was meant to have investigated a dispute over kingship among the VhaVenda, but was replaced in 2011 by the Commission on Traditional Leadership Disputes and Claims before it could do so.

Unlike the Nhlapo commission, it only had the power to make recommendations. The decision-making function was passed to government.

President Jacob Zuma recognised Ramabulana as king in 2012.

Read more on:    limpopo  |  culture

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