The king was addressing the opening of the Provincial House of Traditional Leaders in Ulundi, northern KwaZulu-Natal.
“Our borders are open. Where are the soldiers? As I speak, criminals are at our borders, stealing our children’s and wives’ cars. What kind of nonsense is that?
“Where are the soldiers at these borders? Because these cars are being taken by heavily armed criminals. That shows weakness in our country’s safety and security.
“We, the Zulu nation, can protect ourselves if government is failing us,” he warned.
Last month, then police minister Fikile Mbalula vowed to root out a syndicate that operates along South Africa’s borders. This was after Manguzi community members protested about cross-border crimes that involved the hijacking of 4X4 vehicles and taking them across the border into Mozambique.
Hundreds of vehicles believed to have been hijacked in South Africa are said to be in Mozambique.
Last year, the SANDF unveiled “lighter and faster mobility packages” to be used to fight crime along the country’s borders.
The 4X4 Toyota Land Cruisers would be based in Pongola, KZN, near the country’s border with Swaziland, which also shares a border with Mozambique.
The king also had harsh words for those who killed police officers.
“It is painful that those who are looking to protect our country are being killed... There is not a weekend that passes where a policeman is not killed or a funeral of a policeman is held,” he said.
The king called on South Africans to put down their guns and end criminality.
“No country can be built and be prosperous with such criminality. No God will be with people who kill each other. Let us look at this broadly; we will not even get investments if such criminality persists,” he added.
He also appealed to the government to resolve the Ingonyama Trust issue.
The king reiterated last week’s call for all Zulu people to donate R5 towards a fund to be used to wage a legal battle, if Parliament goes ahead and repeals the Ingonyama Trust Act.
He also announced details of an account where Zulu people could donate money for legal battles in the fight against the dissolution of the Ingonyama Trust.
“Some overseas friends have asked that we hurry up because they want to contribute,” the king added. He assured the house of transparency regarding the use of the donations.