NONGOMA: KZN Premier Sihle Zikalala has assigned four of his MECs to assist the troubled and divided Zulu monarchy to prepare for the funeral of the late Queen Regent Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu, who passed away on Thursday last week, aged 65.
The assigning of the MECs follows a decision by President Cyril Ramaphosa, to grant the late queen a state funeral (provincial level).
The assigned MECs are Peggy Nkonyeni for Transport and Community Safety, Bongi Sithole-Moloi of Agriculture and Rural Development, Sipho Hlomuka of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, and Hlengiwe Mavimbela of Arts, Culture, Sports and Recreation.
“The MECs have met with the Royal Family and have been advised of the following:
The mortal remains of the Zulu Regent, Her Majesty the Queen, will depart from Johannesburg and arrive at KwaNongoma on Wednesday, May 5, 2021. The funeral/ memorial service will take place on Friday, May 7, 2021,” the premier said.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, Zikalala said that since the late queen briefly occupied the throne (from March 21 to April 29) on an acting basis before her passing, she deserved the burial by the state.
“We applaud His Excellency, President Cyril Ramaphosa, for bestowing Her Majesty with an official funeral, which is a befitting recognition of the role played by Her Majesty the Queen in community upliftment and promoting good moral values in society. Her Majesty played a major role in the community.
“She ran a programme for orphaned children, assisted the needy children with school uniforms, and worked a lot on women empowerment programmes. In support of His Majesty the King, Her Majesty played a critical role in advising and supporting the late King Goodwill Zwelithini kaBhekuzulu, in conflict resolution and promoting peace” Zikalala said.
Meanwhile, high profile mourners continue to visit Khangela Palace, in Nongoma, to mourn the passing of Dlamini Zulu. One of them was Minister of Health Dr Zweli Mkhize. Addressing the media after paying his respects, he said the ongoing royal tensions should be resolved amicably.
“We have obviously seen that there are quite number of issues that are being discussed in public. Our appeal would be for both the members of the royal family, as well as all those who in the leadership, to come together to discuss the issues. It is really inevitably that there would be tensions but the royal family has to come together,” Mkhize said.
Also gracing the palace on Tuesday was a delegation from the royal family of eSwatini, which was led by Prince Guduza Dlamini, a half brother of the late queen. Dlamini said they were saddened by the passing, as they were hoping that the late queen would live long enough to groom future Zulu royals.