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.
“It is with the deepest shock and distress that the Royal Family announces the unexpected passing of Her Majesty Queen Shiyiwe Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu, Regent of the Zulu Nation,” Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, the prime minister, said in a statement.
He said he wanted to assure people that there would be “no leadership vacuum in the Zulu Nation”.
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.
“When she left she was ill and rumours were that she was poisoned,” Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi told national broadcaster SABC.
He said he didn’t want to discuss her health in public but did say she had been ill for some time.
She had been appointed to the role on 24 March, after her 72-year-old husband, King Zwethilini, died in hospital from diabetes-related complications.
Who was Queen Mantfombi?
Queen MaDlamini Zulu held the highest status among the king’s wives, as she came from royalty.
She was the sister of Eswatini’s King Mswati III – Africa’s only absolute monarch.
Queen MaDlamini Zulu had eight children – including five sons – with the late king.
Their eldest son, 47-year-old Prince Misuzulu, is the favourite to take the throne, reports say.
A succession battle may lie ahead
The queen’s death raises uncertainty about the succession process within the Zulu royal house, and divisions in the family are pointing to a possible troubled and turbulent battle.
Prince Buthelezi laid bare the divisions within the royal family when he revealed that the late King Goodwill Zwelithini’s siblings had been conducting meetings without the authority or sanction of the regent.
Under King Zwelithini’s will, Queen Mantfombi was named regent pending the installation of a successor.
Speaking on a local radio station on Friday, Prince Buthelezi said Queen Mantfombi Dlamini Zulu had been sick for about two years and that the family had long suspected she’d been poisoned.
However, the cause of death has not been made public at this stage.
Queen Mantfombi is the daughter of the late King Sobhuza and sister to King Mswati III of Eswatini and that gave her a higher status among King Zwelithini’s five wives.
As the “great” wife, it became obvious that one of her sons would be guaranteed to take over as king.
AmaZulu – the Zulu – are South Africa’s largest ethnic group, and its monarchy has been at the forefront of upholding Zulu customs and traditions.
The monarch also controls millions of hectares of land through the Ingonyama Trust.
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Xtian Dela & girlfriend Fatma Banj welcome their first child together.
YouTuber, blogger and budding politician Aurther Mandera popularly known as Xtian Dela is expecting his first child with his girlfriend Fatma Banj.
The safe delivery of Ms Banj come months after the couple went public with their pregnancy.They shared photos on instagram from their pregnancy shoot, after keeping the pregnancy a secret for a couple of weeks.
Xtian expressed his love for Fatma and poured out his heart to her with a message filled with love, while expressing the changes he has undergone during the time they have been together.
The Blogger in a long post said:
“ Can’t believe it’s already 7 months down the line. You have CHANGED me a LOT @fatmah_banj. You’ve given me happiness, given me peace, made me laugh, cry, smile, challenged me mentally and business-wise, you’ve become a true BEST friend and now you’ve given me the best gift a man can ask for… You’ve made me a DAD.
I’ve turned a new leaf. Clean shave, more mature and focused thanks to YOU. I’ve let go of all my negative old ways. Apologies to ANYONE I’ve wronged in the past. Starting a new chapter focusing on FAMILY and POLITICS. I MUST make Westlands and Kenya BETTER for my baby.”
The blogger went on to apologize to all the people he has ever wronged saying he is a changed man whose focus will be on family and politics.
He noted that he is optimistic of clinching the Westlands parliamentary seat come 2022.
Sudan protesters demand military coup as crisis gets worse
On Saturday, pro-military demonstrators chanted “down with the hunger government” and called for General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, head of the armed forces.
“We need military government, di current government don fail to bring us justice and equality,” one protester tells AFP.
Unlike previous demonstrations for di kontri, dem allow protesters to reach di gates of di presidential palace and little police presence na im bin dey.
Pro-government protesters don also call for rallies on Thursday in response to Saturday demonstrations.
On Friday evening, nearly a month after a failed coup, Prime Minister Abdallah Hamdok denounced “deep divisions” between civilians and military but also within these two blocks. He also declared that the transition was going through its “most dangerous” crisis, saying that the path to democracy was threatened.
Around him, pick-ups are dropping off new waves of protesters, some of whom are chanting “One army, one people”, while the security forces have blocked many of the capital’s main roads since the morning.
“There is no stability and life is too expensive,” said the 50-year-old man, whose country, one of the poorest in the world, is caught between inflation approaching 400% and an austerity decreed by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
For their opponents, Saturday’s demonstrators are supporters of the former deposed regime. Supporters of a complete transfer of power to civilians have already called for “a demonstration of one million people” on Thursday.
Sudan’s prime minister on Friday announced a series of steps for his country’s transition to democracy less than a month after a coup attempt rocked its leadership.
In a speech, Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok called the coup attempt an ‘alarm bell’ that should awaken people to the roots of the country’s political and economic challenges.
Authorities announced the coup attempt by a group of soldiers on September 22, saying that it had failed.
They blamed supporters of the country’s former autocrat Omar al-Bashir for planning the takeover.
3 Cops Implicated In Serial Child Killer’s Escape Freed On Sh100,000 Bail
The trio, Inspector Philip Mbithi, Corporal Mutuma Boniface and Mwende Mwinzi, were on Friday directed to also provide one contact person and report to the investigating officer daily for the next seven days.
Trial Magistrate Jane Kamau said that the prosecution had not shown compelling reasons to deny the officers bail or bond.
She ordered the investigation team to conclude the probe within seven days with the matter slated for mention on October 21.
The prosecution had applied for fourteen additional days to hold the suspects in custody but their application was opposed by the suspects’ lawyer, Danstan Omari, on grounds that the officers are not a flight risk.
Wanjala was considered to be a threat to the public, especially children, who was arrested some time in July but had been in custody since after investigators, on at least two occasions, asked for his plea taking to be deferred to allow them time to conclude investigations.
Soon after his arrest, he took police to at least six murder scenes in Nairobi’s Shauri Moyo and in Western Kenya where he had dumped the bodies and was taken to court days later.
In Shauri Moyo, Nairobi, police said he led detectives to scenes where he confessed to killing and dumping two minors. Another body was recovered in Westlands.
Wanjala also led the detectives to Kabete during the search where they recovered two more victims’ bodies from a river believed have been killed by the suspect.
Omari also said the suspects will not interfere with ongoing investigations.
The release of the suspects came even as police announced an end to search efforts to apprehend the escaped suspect who was due to be arraigned in court on Tuesday.
Masten Wanjala, 20, was murdered by an irate mob in Bungoma according to Assistant County Commissioner Cornelius Nyaribai confirmed his death on Friday.
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