December 2, 2022
South Africa recognizes the new Zulu king in his first coronation in more than 50 years

South Africa recognizes the new Zulu king in his first coronation in more than 50 years

The appointment of the king comes after a year of disputes over succession within the royal family. King Misuzulu succeeds his father, Goodwill Zwelithini, who died in March 2021

Rajesh Jantilal/AFPKing Misuzulu Zulu, 48, waves to a crowd during the king’s coronation at Musa Mabeda Stadium in Durban

A large crowd gathered at a stadium in Durban, South Africa, this Saturday, the 29th, to commemorate the recognition of South African President Cyril Ramaphosa as the King of the Zulu. This “coronation” – a term widely used in the country – was the first in more than half a century and will take place after a year of succession disputes within the royal family. Misuzulu Zulu, 48, is succeeded by her father, Goodwill Zwelithini, who died in March 2021 after a long rule under apartheid and then the transition to democracy. The death of this respected figure, who was crowned in 1968, at the age of twenty, shook the country. The new king Mizuzulu (“one who strengthens the Zulu people”), soon recognized by President Ramaphosa, is the son of the late king’s relationship with his third wife, who was his favourite, and has been described as a “great queen”. The first wife challenged the succession in court, but the court rejected the appeal. The title of king does not confer executive authority, but the king exercises significant moral influence over more than 11 million Zulu, who represent nearly a fifth of South Africa’s population. In the young democracy of eleven official languages, the constitution recognizes traditional sovereigns and chiefs. Among the thousands of people who gathered at Moses Mapeda Stadium in Durban, the country’s third city on the Indian Ocean, was Mswati III, the absolute king of Eswatini, the uncle of the new Zulu king. The fame of the Zulu people, which reverberates beyond African borders, is originally based on the exploits of Chaka, the ruthless warrior and army maker who, generations later, at the end of the 19th century, was victorious in a bloody battle against the British. empire. The coronation was attended by a huge crowd of women in colorful robes and men dressed as warriors.

New Zulu King South Africa (5)

Zulu King Misuzulu appears on screen at Musa Mapeda Stadium in Durban Marco Longari / AFP

New Zulu King South Africa (1)

Amabutho, King Zulu regiments, dressed in traditional costume and carrying shields and batons, are seen at Musa Mabeda Stadium in Durban Marco Longari/AFP

New Zulu King South Africa (4)

Amabutho, King Zulu regiments, dressed in traditional garb and carrying shields and batons, march outside Musa Mabeda Stadium in Durban Marco Longari/AFP

New Zulu King South Africa (3)

Amabutho, King Zulu regiments, dressed in traditional costume and carrying shields and batons, are seen at Musa Mabeda Stadium in Durban Marco Longari/AFP

New Zulu King South Africa (2)

Amabutho, King Zulu regiments, dressed in traditional costume and carrying shields and batons, are seen at Musa Mabeda Stadium in Durban Marco Longari/AFP