ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT ZULU QUEEN WHO DIED A MONTH AFTER ENSTOOLMENT
It is quite a tragedy to die after an enstoolment in just a month. It doesn’t matter if the person was a regent or not. It is a kingship or queenship in every right.
In March, the Zulu tribe of South Africa planted their King, Goodwill Zwelthini. The Zulus use the term “plant” instead of “bury” because they believe their kings only transition to becoming ancestors. The 72 years old who died from a diabetic-related ailment left behind 6 wives and 28 children. Who was to succeed the king?
Zulu Queen mother Mantfombi Shiyiwe Dlamini Zulu, the king’s third wife, was enstooled as a Queen regent until the Zulu kingdom of 11 million people found a successor.
Shiyiwe Dlamini was born on the 15th of February 1953 as the princess of Swaziland Protectorate. Her father who became king after Swaziland gained independence in 1968 betrothed his children to royals from different African countries to build an alliance. Shiyiwe was given to the late Zulu King Goodwill Zwelthini to marry in 1973.
Marriage Plans And The Enstoolment Of The Zulu Queen
As part of the marriage agreement, the princess was to be the King’s Great wife which meant that her male children would be more eligible to the throne compared to the other children. Due to the relationship the Zulu kingdom wanted to have with Swaziland, they agreed. The royals got married in 1977.
Although the royal couple married in 1977, they already had two children. A boy was born in 1974 by the name, King Misuzulu Zulu. And a girl who was born in 1976. These two siblings were followed by 6 more children. Five princes and three princesses in all.
It was for being a great queen that she was elected Queen regent until a successor was elected. The royal agreement was being honoured. During the 3 months mourning period of king Goodwill Zwelthini, Queen Shiyiwe was enstooled.
The Zulu kingdom felt that the first son, King Misuzulu whose name translates as “strengthening the Zulus” would be king and they were in anticipation of that.
Ailment And Death Of The Zulu Queen
While mourning and celebrating a staunch leader, the Zulus had to keep the Queen regent in prayers when she had reportedly been hospitalized. Although the family didn’t disclose her death immediately, Queen Shiyiwe is said to have passed on on the 29th of April 2021.
The Queen’s death was sudden and heart-wrenching and led people to think that she had been killed. Poisoned to put it simply. This misconception was quickly squashed.
Queen Shiyiwe was sick for two years and scheduled an appointment to remove gallstones. Because she was just recovering from covid-19, they said that she was not strong enough for the operation. Whether they went through with the operation or not, nobody knows. Things have been kept private from then on. One thing that is certain however is that the queen regent was not poisoned.
President Cyril Ramaphosa has given the royal family and the Zulu kingdom his condolences in a short message, “We extend our thoughts, prayers, and hearts once more to the Royal Family who, while mourning the passing of the beloved King, are now called upon to bid farewell to the Regent in sadly short succession.”
Queen Shiyiwe Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu died at 65 years old, just a month after planting her husband. Her children, although adults are devastated at losing both parents in a space of a few months.
Having ruled for just a month, her son Prince Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi described her leadership role to be that of inspiration to Zulu women. He said that his mother’s short rule was to “administer the final burial rites to the backward, patriarchal and chauvinistic tendencies that considered women as inferior beings.”
The bridge between Eswatini (Swaziland) and the Zulu kingdom is gone. May she rest in perfect peace.
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