KING Goodwill Zwelithini gets millions from taxpayers every year. But at the recent annual reed dance, the king complained to President Jacob Zuma that R60 million wasn’t enough!
This is despite other traditional kings complaining that the Zulu king was being treated better than them.
But the king denied he was getting special treatment and criticised the KZN government for treating him badly and undermining his kingdom.
Speaking at this year’s uMkhosi Womhlanga at eNyokeni royal palace in KwaNongoma, the king told 45 000 maidens and thousands of other delegates that government was full of thieves stealing taxpayers’ money and when he wanted money for ceremonies, he was told there wasn’t any.
“Msholozi, I want you to know that I’m being treated badly by your government. My maidens slept in the rain while government officials were snoring at luxury hotels.
“I tried to contact them but they didn’t help me. I had to send my personal security to check the tents and look for a place for the maidens. I hate to be treated like this by people who have been in their positions for barely five years while my position is forever.”
Zwelithini said the department of arts and culture failed to provide enough tents for the ceremony and that his functions were not treated the same as other government ceremonies.
The king criticised the provincial government for organising other functions during the reed dance.
He also lashed out at those who criticised traditional virginity tests, saying they were jealous.
MEC Ntombikayise Sibhidla-Saphetha said the maidens at the reed dance exceeded the number her department had planned for.
“We had planned for 37 000 maidens but the number exceeded that and reached about 45 000.
“Many maidens came without our knowledge but we couldn’t turn them away,” she said.