Push for Zuma s Swazi wedding
THE royal family in Swaziland are growing impatient with President Jacob Zuma for not marrying Princess Sebentile Dlamini, who would be his fifth wife.
That is according to four members of the Swazi Royal House, who say King Mswati III has upped the pressure on Zuma to complete the process of marrying his half-sister.
All the relatives Sunday World spoke to declined to speak on the record for fear of reprisals.
Zuma paid lobola for Sebentile in 2002, but has not made any attempt to move forward with the marriage.
The family members say that when Prince Masitsela was in South Africa in June to convey the king s best wishes to the Mandela family after the former president was admitted to hospital, he also had a special message for Zuma.
Masitsela is the most senior prince and was the administrator of Swaziland for a time.
Masitsela did not wish to talk about the message Mswati had asked him to deliver to Zuma.
Yes, I met President Zuma in Pretoria and I visited the former president in hospital,” he said. We were well looked after in South Africa.”
Prince Qethuka, the head of royal affairs, also confirmed that the delegation visited Zuma and indicated that he had been supposed to be part of it, but Mswati had reassigned him to other duties.
He confirmed that since lobola was paid 11 years ago, the princess could now not marry anyone else but Zuma.
Last year, Sebentile was moved into a state property that had been used by Deputy Prime Minister Themba Masuku.
Yes, that s correct,” Masuku said when asked whether he had lived in the house in Waterford.
Yes, that s also correct,” he responded when asked whether it was Sebentile who had moved into the house after him.
The home is old-fashioned but palatial by any standard, particularly in the poverty-stricken kingdom of Swaziland.
I don t know what the value of the house is,” said Masuku. It would be difficult to know that because it belongs to the state.” He said it has eight bedrooms. Four are in the main house, plus three living areas. There s a guest cottage with two bedrooms and another building with two more.” Masuku said.
The property has extra security features, including a motorised gate, a guardhouse and two CCTV cameras.
The princess, who runs a hair salon among other business interests, brushed off questions when contacted.
I am going into a meeting shortly, she said. Please send me your questions by e-mail.”
She failed to respond to questions sent to her.
Two years ago, The Times of Swaziland reported that the princess was being paid a salary while sitting at home.
She was employed as a policewoman, but had last been to work in 2004, occupying the rank of constable.
Zuma s spokesman, Mac Maharaj, said: I can t answer when I don t have the answers to your questions. I forwarded your questions [to the president] but he hasn t provided me with the answers, so I can t comment.”
Sunday World has over the past two weeks made repeated attempts to solicit comment from the presidency about Zuma s engagement to the princess.
Zuma currently has four wives, but has been married six times. One of his spouses died and he divorced Nkosozana Dlamini-Zuma.
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