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'The coming winter may be too cold for initiation'

The House of Traditional Leaders has warned winter weather conditions could affect the health the initiates.

FILE: A picture of young boys from the Xhosa tribe attending a traditional initiation school in Libode in the Eastern Cape province. Picture: AFP.

CAPE TOWN - The National House of Traditional Leaders has cautioned that the coming winter may be too cold for initiation.

It has warned provinces to postpone the rite of passage as the weather conditions could affect the health the initiates.

More than 30 initiates died while undergoing the rite of passage across the country last winter.

The Congress of Traditional Leaders of South Africa (Contralesa) however believes only some provinces may be affected.

Contralesa's Xolile Ndevu says, "We said, as an organisation, those provinces that have never been in a crisis of experiencing bad weather conditions may still continue with initiation schools while exercising high caution."

The initiation season is set to start later this month in some parts of the country.

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