Durban - The National House of Traditional Leaders has paid tribute to late King Goodwill Zwelithini saying he played a role in uplifting the poor and marginalised.
It described him as a servant of the people and a leader who advocated for upholding cultural values and principles.
It said the king’s passing was a big loss to the country.
The Zulu kind died on Friday morning aged 72. Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, the former leader of the IFP and the king’s traditional prime minister made the announcement.
“The Zulu nation, the country of South Africa and the world will surely be poor without the indelible contribution of Isilo Samabandla in daily lives. We salute the king, whose lifelong mission was to serve the people by uplifting the downtrodden and the historically marginalised.
“The institution of traditional leadership holds His Majesty in high esteem as the monarch of AmaZulu and servant of the people. The king contributed immensely in championing community development and restoration of cultural activities. In the history of the Zulu nation, His Majesty King Goodwill Zwelithini is the longest reigning king. His Majesty ruled for 50 years.
“The King’s voice will be sorely missed as the institution of traditional leadership has embarked on a new programme called InvestRural, which seeks to empower rural communities.
“The programme’s foundation is African traditions, culture and land which the king protected and promoted at all times. The king’s wisdom would have propelled the institution to move with speed in changing the lives of the rural communities,” the National House of Traditional Leaders said.