Home » Zulu kingdom loses queen regent barely a month after her appointment

Zulu kingdom loses queen regent barely a month after her appointment

by Ishioma Emi

The Zulu Royal Family of South Africa has announced the untimely death of Queen Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu, the queen regent of the kingdom. The unfortunate incident occurred a little over one month after she entered office.

Rumors abound that the 65-year-old ruler was poisoned. However, Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, the traditional prime minister of the kingdom, expressed the family’s shock over her death while debunking the poisoning rumors.

“It is with the deepest shock and distress that the Royal Family announces the unexpected passing of Her Majesty Queen Shiyiwe Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu, Regent of the Zulu Nation,” Buthelezi said in a statement reported by BBC.

Dlamini Zulu was appointed queen regent of the AmaZulu Kingdom on March 21. She was mandated to govern its affairs for three months while the Zulu nation’s royal family mourned the late King Goodwill Zwelithini kaBhekuzulu, who died on March 12. 

Although the royal house claimed that the delay in appointing the next king was to afford it time to mourn the late king, it was speculated that the marital status of Prince Misuzulu Zulu complicated the process. The prince is 47 years old and unmarried, and Zulu tradition forbids an unmarried prince from ascending to its ancestral throne.

Her appointment therefore eliminated a leadership vacuum and tamed kingship ambitions within the royal family. 

The Zulu nation, with an estimated 11 million people, is the largest tribe in South Africa. Although the throne’s authority is mainly ceremonial, it remains significant in the country’s political circles. 

The king has a say in how the annual budget of R70-million ($4.73 million) allocated by the KwaZulu-Natal government for royal upkeep is spent.

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