Zikalala: King Goodwill Zwelithini was a shining symbol of hope and unity

The king passed away in the early hours of this morning in hospital after spending weeks in hospital for what was initially reported to be a problem with his blood glucose levels.

FILE: AmaZulu King Goodwill Zwelithini during his 72nd birthday celebrations on 27 July 2020. Picture: @kzngov/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala said that AmaZulu King Goodwill Zwelithini was the Zulu nation's moral compass, pointing the way forward as a custodian of the Zulu culture and tradition.

The king passed away in the early hours of this morning in hospital after spending weeks in hospital for what was initially reported to be a problem with his blood glucose levels.

He was 72.

READ: Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini dies aged 72

"For five decades in South Africa's ever-changing socio-political and cultural landscape, our internationally renowned monarch has been a constant, enduring, influential and unshakeable force for positive change and ever shining symbol of hope and unity," Zikalala said.

The KwaZulu-Natal government briefed the media on Friday afternoon on the way forward, following the death of the king.

The provincial executive announced earlier that all planned activities would be cancelled for now.

ZULU NATION IN SHOCK

The Zulu indunas in Johannesburg said that they were shocked and saddened by the death of King Goodwill Zwelithini.

ALSO READ: Prince Buthelezi saddened by King Goodwill Zwelithini's passing

The mood was somber at Kwa Mai Mai, also known as Ezinyangeni in downtown Johannesburg, following the announcement of the king's death.

Sphiwe Mhlongo is the chairperson of izindunas in Johannesburg: "We will remember him for creating peace."

Eyewitness News also visited the Nancefield hostel, with many expressing their shock at the news.

Hostel induna, Thisha Shange: "The king has done so much for us, he's done so much for the Zulu nation."

'HONOURABLE MAN'

President Cyril Ramaphosa added to the many voices that paid tribute to the late king. He said that the king would be remembered as a beloved and visionary monarch.

The Freedom Front Plus has also pay tribute to the king.

Party leader Pieter Groenewald said that King Zwelithini was an honourable man.

"I had personally met King Zwelithini and found him to be a friendly and honourable man. He was a true South African, who was unashamedly proud of his Zulu heritage. May his loved one be consoled by our heavenly Father."

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