Durban - Irked by persistent speculation regarding who will occupy the vacant throne, the Zulu royal family has asked to be given space to mourn in peace the death of the late King Goodwill Zwelithini.
In a statement issued by Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi in his capacity as the traditional prime minister to the Zulu monarch and nation, the royal family said it is disturbed by the fact that some parties, including the media, are fuelling speculation on the succession announcement which will only be made after the mourning period is completed.
The appeal comes amid rampant reports of factional fights in the royal family regarding who should succeed the late king, who passed away on March 12.
Some members of the royal family claim that the leaking of information to the media is an attempt to influence the succession debate.
“Since the passing of His Majesty King Goodwill Zwelithini kaBhekuzulu, the Royal Family has kept the nation informed every step of the way on matters related to the King’s succession. Despite this, however, there is a continued stream of pontification and speculation through the media by academics and apparent experts on what might be happening within the Royal Family.
“This has the capacity, wittingly or unwittingly, to create conflict and disquiet. The Royal Family therefore asks again to be given the space to mourn,” Buthelezi said in a statement on Tuesday morning.
Furthermore, Buthelezi said, the speculations are troublesome as those making them have no respect for the royal family and the late king.
“We appeal to those who have opinions on the matter of succession to show respect for the late King and for the grieving family, and to refrain from stirring up speculation. The nation may rest assured that the family is dealing with all necessary matters and will take them to finality. It is preferable, however, that this process be accomplished without the unnecessary distress of misleading conjectures,” he said.
As the Zulu nation mourns and is without a king, Queen Mantfombi Dlamini-Zulu, the reclusive sister of King Mswati of Eswatini, is currently holding the fort.