Buthelezi lays siege to monarch's grip and Mandela's dream
Monday 13 March 1995
Soon the minor chiefs at the front were dancing with glee. "I dreamed of a witch, doing her sorcery," they all boomed in Zulu unison, springbok- skin skirts and weapons flailing .
Mr Buthelezi was up to some old magic himself yesterday, staging another rally to consolidate his power in KwaZulu- Natal, threatening President Nelson Mandela's vision of a unitary South African state and laying psychological siege to his main local opponent, the Zulu king Goodwill Zwelethini
"We are writing a new page in the history of the Zulu nation," said Mr Buthelezi, whose Inkatha Freedom Party is the only significant black rival to Mr Mandela's African National Congress. "We are leading the struggle for its final liberation and self-determination." Such words have prompted fears that Mr Buthelezi is plotting to dominate KwaZulu-Natal and divide it from the rest of South Africa in the guise of a federation. Among South Africa's 40 million people, only 7 million are Zulus, but they constitute 75 per cent of the population of KwaZulu-Natal.
Mr Buthelezi's struggle for Zulu self-determination will be a hard one. Inkatha polled only 10 per cent of the national vote in last year's historic elections and just managed to win a majority of the KwaZulu-Natal provincial assembly - 41 seats out of 81 - amid allegations of rampant ballot box- stuffing. But he is not shrinking from the fight, even though the government is still refusing to honour a promise of international mediation on the role of the Zulu monarchy and his demands for autonomy. Inkatha, part of the Government of National Unity, withdrew from it for two weeks last month over the issue.
But to speak for all the Zulus, Mr Buthelezi must also have the king on his side. The ANC has seduced Goodwill Zwelethini with money and an army guard to protect him from the violence endemic to the province's political turf battles. So it was the king's "spiritual exile [from his] mystical relationship with the people" that was the focus of yesterday's rally in Umlazi, just south of Durban.
It is ANC territory and so tension was high, culminating in shooting in the air, some injuries and police tear-gassing of the stadium. The king had ordered Zulus to stay away, but Mr Buthelezi showed the strength of his position by securing the participation of many of the province's 300 tribal chiefs. Even so, he trod carefully. After all, the two men are set to dine with the Queen during her visit this month.
"Nothing could be more far removed from our soul and our spirit than a vile plan to dethrone our king," Mr Buthelezi said. But if the king did not come back to the fold within two months, "we shall make final decisions to plot the way forward ..."
Prince after prince of the royal house stood before the crowd to criticise the king, in what one sub-chief described as a "very, very painful" vote of no confidence.
Sales of the tablet are set to fall again, say analysts
Met Police confirm there was a 'minor disturbance' and that no-one was arrested
George Lucas criticises the major Hollywood film studios
Does Chris Grayling realise what a vague concept he is dealing with?
Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets
Parties threaten resort's image as a family destination
I Am Bread could actually be a challenging and nuanced title
- 1 Indian footballer Peter Biaksangzuala dies after injuring spine doing somersault celebration
- 4 Drink alcohol and eat meat to improve male fertility - but cut down on coffee, studies suggest
- 5 Brian Harvey turns up at Downing Street and 'demands to speak to Prime Minister'
Jack the Ripper: Scientist who claims to have identified notorious killer has 'made serious DNA error'
Banksy arrest hoax: Internet duped by fake report claiming that the street artist's identity has been revealed
'Russian submarine spotted' by Swedish military off coast of Stockholm
Brian Harvey turns up at Downing Street and 'demands to speak to Prime Minister'
Kentucky gang rape: 15-year-old boy left in critical condition after sexual attack by group at party
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
London bus driver allegedly kicks gay couple off for kissing
Amal Alamuddin calls for the return of the Elgin Marbles from Britain: 'Injustice has persisted for too long'
Lord Freud: Tory welfare minister apologises after saying disabled people are 'not worth’ the minimum wage
£80 - £140 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: Year 5 Teacher KS2 teaching job...
£35000 - £45000 Per Annum Pensions Scheme After 6 Months: Clearwater People So...
£35000 - £37000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Systems Analyst / Busines...
£30000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ampersand Consulting LLP: Senior Change ...