Durban – King Goodwill Zwelithini has told the ANC that if it is unable to lead his people, it should step aside and allow him to take over the reins, because “God gave me powers to lead”.
The king said the tit-for-tat political murders in Inchanga, allegedly as a result of infighting between alliance partners the ANC and the SACP before and after the local government elections were signs of a failed leadership.
“It hurts me when I am seeing people holding two separate funerals on the same day in one area while they belong to one party, one alliance,” he said.
He was referring to the Inchanga incident in which SACP activist Nonsikelelo Blose was killed near a tavern in the area after attending an SACP meeting, which was followed by the revenge killing of the ANC’s Xolani Ngcobo. The parties held separate funerals for the two a few kilometres apart on the same day.
“If you fail (to lead the country) step aside and allow us to lead the country. We can lead it very well. Anyway, God gave me powers to lead,” said the king.
King Zwelithini was addressing thousands of maidens during a reed dance ceremony held in Ingwavuma, just north of Jozini, at the weekend. The event was part of preparations for the main event to take place at his Nyokeni Palace this weekend.
The king lamented the loss of power by the ANC in three metros, Tshwane, Johannesburg and Nelson Mandela Bay, saying this was a consequence of failing to listen to his advice.
“As I am talking the capital city of South Africa is governed by whites, which is a sign that the country is gone. The economic base (Johannesburg) has been taken over by whites. If politicians had listened to me the election results would not be like this,” he said.
The king had previously told government leaders that they should be honest with people and tell them if they would be able to deliver on their promises on time instead of giving them false hope.
He said the ANC and opposition parties were interested in power struggles instead of service provision. He said this had led to the Umkhanyakude District Municipality not being able to function. The district could not elect its executive committee before political parties resolved their stand-off on who should govern the Jozini Municipality.
Jozini, which is yet to form its council, has to be represented in the district council, resulting in the Umkhanyakude impasse.
He said the politicians had shown immaturity because of their failure to unite behind service provision.
“Therefore they are failures. What does it mean when people who have been elected by people point fingers at each other?
“Solve these problems so that you can provide services. I cannot tolerate what is happening because if it continues like this it is setting a bad example.”
DA provincial leader Zwakele Mncwango said he was concerned that the king’s “racial” comment about the ANC losing the metros would derail the DA’s mission to take the province from the ANC in 2019.
“We found this statement not only misleading, but it shows his majesty leaving his role to unite (the people), instead meddling in political issues, dividing people according to race and politics.
“To insinuate that because Tshwane is governed by the DA, it is in the hands of the white people, is racist itself and an insult to DA leaders and members,” he said.
Mncwango said that he was willing to meet the king to discuss his statement.
ANC provincial spokesman Mdumiseni Ntuli said his party “welcomes and respects” the opinions expressed by the king.
“We are also working harder to ensure that the current stalemate is resolved in the best interests of the people of Jozini,” he said.