King Dalindyebo back in prison

CityPress - - News - LUBA­BALO NGCUKANA luba­balo.ngcukana@city­press.co.za

Two days af­ter sub­jects of jailed abaThembu King Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo marched to the Union Build­ings in Pre­to­ria to ask Pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma for his pres­i­den­tial par­don, the monarch was back in prison af­ter spend­ing close to two months in hos­pi­tal.

Dalindyebo was taken to the East Lon­don Max­i­mum Cor­rec­tional Cen­tre af­ter be­ing dis­charged from Life St Do­minic’s Hos­pi­tal in East Lon­don, where he had been re­ceiv­ing treat­ment for ul­cers and de­pres­sion since mid-Jan­uary.

The Daily Dis­patch on Fri­day re­ported that the con­tro­ver­sial king had to be car­ried to his cell af­ter he stopped walk­ing in protest at be­ing re­turned to prison.

The monarch had “va­cated” his prison cell in Jan­uary when he was ad­mit­ted to hos­pi­tal, ask­ing that all his per­sonal be­long­ings be taken to him in hos­pi­tal, in­clud­ing his bed­ding and books.

Zama Feni, pro­vin­cial cor­rec­tional ser­vices spokesper­son, con­firmed to City Press that the king had been taken back to his cell on Thurs­day, but re­fused to dis­cuss any de­tails for se­cu­rity rea­sons.

The king, who handed him­self over to prison of­fi­cials at the Mthatha Welling­ton Prison on De­cem­ber 30 to start serv­ing his 12-year sen­tence, be­gan a hunger strike when he went to jail, caus­ing his ul­cers to worsen.

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Mthunzi Ngonyama, Dalindyebo’s spokesper­son, was not avail­able for com­ment.

Mean­while, the pres­i­dency re­ferred the mat­ter of the pres­i­den­tial par­don, which was first raised by the Congress of Tra­di­tional Lead­ers of SA in the East­ern Cape, to Jus­tice Min­is­ter Michael Ma­sutha to con­sider. In De­cem­ber, Ma­sutha re­jected a fi­nal and des­per­ate at­tempt by the king to have his case sent for re­trial. This was af­ter the Con­sti­tu­tional Court also de­nied the con­tro­ver­sial king a hear­ing be­cause it felt there was no rea­son­able prospect for any ap­peal to suc­ceed.

The king, who is a clan nephew of late for­mer pres­i­dent Nelson Man­dela, was con­victed of ar­son, kid­nap­ping, de­feat­ing the ends of jus­tice and as­sault with in­tent to cause griev­ous bod­ily harm dur­ing a vi­o­lent strike at his Tyalara farm be­tween 1995 and 1996.

While the king sits in jail, mem­bers of his fam­ily are fight­ing over who should take over as act­ing monarch in his ab­sence.

Two camps have emerged, with one sup­port­ing his younger brother, Mthandeni Mankunku Dalindyebo, while the other wants his el­dest son, Azenathi, a third-year crim­i­nol­ogy stu­dent at Free State Univer­sity, to take the throne.

The two groups failed to agree last Satur­day in a heated meet­ing, and re­ferred the mat­ter to East­ern Cape Premier Phu­mulo Ma­su­alle to set up a com­mis­sion to de­ter­mine which of the two groups’ choice was le­git­i­mate.

On the eve of his in­car­cer­a­tion, Dalindyebo, who had pre­vi­ously ap­pointed Azenathi as re­gent, threw a span­ner in the works by ask­ing that his wife, Nok­wanda, act in­stead.

Nok­wanda’s name was re­jected by the di­vided royal fam­ily mem­bers, which in­fu­ri­ated the king, who then or­dered that the Bum­bane Great Place be closed.

PHOTO: FELIX DLANGAMANDLA

A ROYAL RIOT Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo had been re­ceiv­ing treat­ment for ul­cers and de­pres­sion since mid-Jan­uary

King

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