Niehaus attended a Land Imbizo called by the King in KwaZulu-Natal last week. At the Imbizo he apologised to the monarch on behalf of the African National Congress (ANC).
This was after recommendations by former President Kgalema Motlanthe’s High Level Panel to scrap the Ingonyama Trust which holds the King’s land.
The MKMVA has since apologised to Luthuli House. However, it’s been a war of words with several top ANC members at odds over the controversial Ingonyama Trust.
The land was transferred on the eve of the 1994 election to King Zwelithini. The monarch administers – along with his clan chiefs close to 30% of land in KwaZulu-Natal.
When Niehaus apologised for recommendations that sought to expropriate the land, it set a cat among the pigeons.
The ANC’s Head of Elections Fikile Mbalula weighed in, saying only the ANC leadership could apologise. He was suggesting that Niehaus was not mandated to speak on the issue.
Then a letter of apology from MKMVA acting Secretary General Moretlo Mophethe to ANC secretary general Ace Magashule was written.
The letter labels Niehaus’ comments as a misfortune which was regretted. It noted that Niehaus was not mandated to address the Imbizo as the MKMVA had not been invited.
The MKMVA reiterated its support for a party resolution to amend 25 of the Constitution to enable expropriation of land without compensation.
On Friday Night, President Cyril Ramaphosa met King Zwelithini and reassured him that monarch’s lands under his control would not be expropriated.