Choosing a successor

2007-12-05 00:00

In KwaZulu-Natal, two forms of government, the traditional and the democratically elected, operate side by side — a state of affairs that is not always harmonious, as we witness the differences that sometimes occur between the royal house headed by King Goodwill Zwelithini and the legislature. It’s essential to note that some 51% of the population is located in rural areas under the jurisdiction of amakhosi, so that it isn’t possible here to emulate many other democratic countries in which the people govern themselves through their elected representatives only and the roles of the monarch and the nobility have become mainly titular and ceremonial. So, although the legislative power in the province is held by democratic institutions, traditional leadership needs to be accommodated.

Now, one source of discontent may have been eliminated. The KwaZulu-Natal Legislature last week passed an amendment which should usher in a “dispute-free era” in the institution of traditional leadership. The current practice, whereby the eldest son of an inkosi automatically assumes power after his father's death, will now fall away. Instead, a reigning inkosi will have the power to choose the successor he believes is best suited to take charge of his jurisdiction. Following the appointment of an independent and impartial registrar, the name of the chosen successor will be entered in a registry of succession and kept secret until after the inkosi’s death. This measure should help eliminate disputes over succession which often lead to bloodshed.

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. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

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.