The crowd at the anti-xenophobia imbizo in Durban on Monday spearheaded by King Goodwill Zwelithini, booed anyone who tried to address the crowd who was not Zulu.
As Hindu priest, Ashwin Trikamjee recited a prayer the crowd started booing him.
They wanted Trikamjee to get off the stage and clapped when he finally stepped down.
MEC Mike Mabuyakhulu urged the crowd to calm down. "Please, people, these are just prayers. Please behave yourselves," said the MEC. The crowds continued to boo priests who were not Zulu.
As a Muslim cleric took the stage the crowds continued to jeer despite the fact that he spoke Zulu. "As a Muslim, the King is the father of all nations," he said to the crowd. Nearly 5 000 Zulu Amabutho (regiments) have descended on the Moses Mabhida ahead of Zwelithini's address.
With traditional weapons held aloft, the group moved around the stadium singing in Zulu.
The songs have a loaded message of aggression, and the undertone is one that supports a call for foreigners to leave the country.