Venda princess gets interdict to halt uncle's coronation

2016-09-02 17:15

Thohoyandou – A VhaVenda princess eyeing the throne has secured a high court interdict preventing her uncle from being crowned king, pending a review of the decision.

On Friday, Thohoyandou High Court Judge Khami Makhafola said he was satisfied that the matter was urgent, and granted the interdict.

Masindi Mphephu, 24, was challenging President Jacob Zuma's decision to recognise her uncle, Toni Mphephu Ramabulana, as king. He would have been crowned next Friday.

Mphephu's lawyer, Dali Mpofu, argued that preventing her from ascending to the throne because she is a woman was unconstitutional.

Mpofu said Masindi was being denied her right to be queen because of her gender.

Ishmael Semenya, for Zuma and Mphephu, argued that Masindi would not suffer any prejudice if the coronation proceeded, as the law made a provision for dethroning a wrongfully-endorsed king or queen.

VhaVenda spokesperson Jackson Mafunzwaini said they would abide by the court’s decision.

"It is not over. We are going to fight legally. A lot will happen at the review," he said.

Masindi’s cousin, Humbulani Mphephu, said they were happythat  justice had prevailed.

The Mphephu royal family had argued that women could not rule.

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

It was meant to have investigated the VhaVenda kingship dispute, but was replaced in 2011 by the Commission on Traditional Leadership Disputes and Claims. Unlike the Nhlapho commission, it only had the power to make recommendations. The decision-making function was passed to government.

Zuma recognised Ramabulana as king in 2012.


Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Financial advisors – Do you need one and should you get one?

The good, the bad, and everything else you need to know when considering hiring a financial advisor.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.