Just when a sense of stability is returning to the Zulu kingdom following the weeks of commotion over the rightful heir to the throne after King Goodwill Zwelithini’s death, a clan that forms part of AmaZulu has criticised the process followed to declare Prince Misuzulu kaZwelithini as the new king.
In a statement on Wednesday, the Msane Tribe Heritage Trust said while the clan was not opposed to the appointment of Prince Misuzulu, they had expected that Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi would have followed the legislation that regulated the installation of traditional leaders instead of “dictating everything”.
“We were taken by surprise when Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi publicly declared Prince Misuzulu as the [new] king of the Zulu kingdom, and that he has already ascended the throne as of Friday night after the presentation of the [reading of his mother’s] will.
“We have approached the department of cooperative governance and traditional affairs to provide us with a clear explanation if the legislation that regulates the installation of traditional leaders in the province is still in existence or not,” read the statement issued by Zwakele KaVangise Msane.
Msane said the legislation could not be applied selectively. “It should also apply even to the installation of Isilo [AmaZulu king],” he said.
Previously Msane told City Press that the clan was “one of the important tribes in the make up of the Zulu kingdom, but is still poverty-stricken, deprived of our traditional rights and access to land ownership”.
He claimed that the clan’s late leader, Saul Msane, had not yet received recognition for the role he had played in the liberation struggle. He said they blamed the ANC for failing them and only “faking concern” when it was time for elections.
On Wednesday, he said: “Anything that will require government intervention for the recognition of the traditional leadership also requires public participation. We are now entitled to a vote, so we have a right to express our concerns of how we would like to be governed.”
He said the clan was “dismayed that Prince Buthelezi is dictating everything, and contravening the very same legislation which he became part of drafting and designing”.
He said Buthelezi was failing to lead by example and implement the legislation to properly install a new king.
“We wish to appeal to Chief Buthelezi to be transparent and lead by example as the main figure behind the Zulu monarch, by not abusing the media to put pressure and influence on our democratically elected government, and also do proper consultations.
“As the Msane tribe, we have a sound history in building the Zulu kingdom but we lost our royal status, dignity, livestock and our ancestors perished. We are not against the appointment or installation of the king, but it is about the way things are being done,” he said.
Earlier this year, the Msanes wrote to Buthelezi seeking assistance to locate their late leader’s grave, “as it is said he was buried at eMakhosini where Zulu kings were buried”.
It was rumoured that Saul Msane, who was also a farmer and adviser to King Dinuzulu [kaCetshwayo] “died after falling from a horseback while riding alongside him”, he said.
The clan was also fighting for recognition: “It is almost 10 years down the line as the Msane Tribe Heritage Trust, appealing and consulting with our provincial government for the recognition and installation of the Msane tribe traditional leadership. But up till today we have not been given any attention,” added the statement.