Saturday, May 1, 2021

Zulu Queen Mantfombi Dlamini dies a month after becoming regent


The Zulu royal family in South Africa has announced the death of its monarch Queen Shiyiwe Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu just a month after she became regent.


The queen's prime minister said her death had taken the family by surprise and they were "utterly bereft".

He has dismissed rumours that the queen had been poisoned.

A successor as ruler of the 11 million-strong nation has not yet been named.

The BBC's Nomsa Maseko in Johannesburg says divisions in the family are pointing to a possible troubled and turbulent succession battle.

The throne does not have formal political power and the monarch's role within broader South African society is largely ceremonial, but they remain hugely influential with a yearly taxpayer-funded budget of more than $4.9m (£3.5m).

Queen Mantfombi was admitted to hospital a week ago after suffering an unspecified illness, South African media reported.

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