Mchunu accused of undermining Zulu royal household

By Drum Digital
29 April 2015

KwaZulu-Natal Premier Senzo Mchunu had to fend off a barrage of criticism from opposition parties over government’s handling of the Royal Household during Tuesday’s sitting of the of the provincial legislature.

Tabling his R743.2m budget vote before MPLs, Mchunu outlined a series of activities for his office, including spearheading the fight against fraud and corruption.

But it was the allocation of R57.6m to the royal household that got the attention of the opposition benches.

“The office of the premier which will now assume responsibility as the parent department of the royal household will give support to the Royal Household Trust and funds will be transferred accordingly,” said Mchunu.

Part of the money would go towards the upkeep of the royal palaces, tuition fees, transportation and medical expenses of the royal family.

The DA’s leader in the legislature, Sizwe Mchunu, accused the premier of failing to consult parties over government’s decision to make the royal household a sub-programme in the premier’s office.

Earlier this year, government announced the department of the royal household had been dissolved and was to be incorporated into the premier’s office.

The IFP echoed the DA’s sentiments, accusing government of undermining the royal household.

“It is obvious that this department does not play open cards and operates in a very clandestine manner with hidden agendas" said IFP leader Blessed Gwala.

He said he was not convinced the Royal Household Trust would be able to manage its affairs and sustain itself.

"I cannot understand what sort of respect is being shown to His Majesty [King Goodwill Zwelithini] when the affairs of the royal house is divided up between the office of the premier that manages the affairs of the king while the affairs of queens, the palaces, etc are managed by the Royal Household Trust,” Gwala said.

ANC MPLs rubbished accusations of undermining traditional leadership, especially the royal household.



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