A Royal Family Feuds Over Who Should be King of the Zulus


Born in rural KwaZulu-Natal, Misuzulu moved to Eswatini when he was 5. He returned to South Africa at age 11 and completed high school at an elite private institution. His family then forced him to attend university in the United States, he said, as part of a scholarship program of the Swazi royal family that sends family members, and some ordinary Swazis, to study overseas.

He said that after spending time at schools in Evansville, Ind., and Vincennes, Ind., he eventually landed in Jacksonville, Fla., where he graduated with a degree in international trade and commerce from Jones College, a small private school that closed in 2017.

Misuzulu said he remained in the United States for several years to volunteer at a Baptist church in Jacksonville that did a lot of charity work in Africa. He returned to South Africa after 10 years away at the urging of his father.

Back in South Africa, he lived a largely anonymous life as a businessman, negotiating contracts for a company that makes pipes.

Until his father died on March 12, 2021.

Within a week, Misuzulu’s name began to surface publicly as a successor. His father’s will called on his mother, Queen Mantfombi, to be the regent — or temporary leader — of the Zulu nation. That indicated to some that King Zwelithini had wanted one of her sons to succeed him. A faction of the family is challenging the will in court, arguing that the king’s signature was forged.

Among Misuzulu’s most prominent early supporters was Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, the prime minister of the Zulu nation since 1954. Prince Buthelezi, 93, has arguably wielded more power than any other Zulu, including the king, over the years, having founded the Inkatha Freedom Party, a Zulu nationalist political party.



Source: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/08/16/world/africa/zulu-king-controversy-south-africa.html