Royal wedding — families trade gifts

2014-07-28 00:00

ZULU King Goodwill Zwelithini married his sixth wife in Ulundi on Saturday.

Zwelithini (66) married Queen ­Zola Mafu (28) in a traditional ceremony on Saturday that was attended by more than 10 000 guests, including President Jacob Zuma, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, the IFP leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi, Police Minister Nathi Nhleko, Deputy Science and Technology Minister and president of the National Freedom Party Zanele Magwaza-Nsibi, KZN Premier Senzo Mchunu and Durban tycoon Vivian Reddy.

The royal bride joined the Zulu royal family in 2004 when she was 17. She has since been living at KwaKhangela palace near Nongoma with fellow Swazi Queen Mantfombi, daughter of King Sobhuza II, who the king married in 1977.

In 2005, Mafu gave birth to a son, Prince Nhlendla.

Following the wedding, the new queen will take up residence at the Ondini Palace.

Saturday’s wedding ceremony was performed according to Zulu cultural tradition, and cattle and sheep were slaughtered for the celebratory feast were provided by amakhosi from around the province.

Yesterday, the wedding entered a second phase with the umabo ceremony, which sees the exchange of gifts between the groom’s and bride’s families.

Last night, a reception was held to celebrate the king’s birthday, which was on July 14. — WR.

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