Picture: Motshwari Mofokeng/African News Agency/ANA.

Nongoma - Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi has arrived at the annual Umkhosi Womhlanga at the eNyokeni Royal Palace, in Nongoma, to be at King Goodwill Zwelithini's side as the traditional Zulu Prime Minister.

Buthelezi recently celebrated his 90th birthday and joined king Zwelithini as thousands of maidens made their way into the palace to plant their symbolic reeds in honour of the king.

The king's daughter Princess Cebo Zulu led the scores of Reed carrying maidens for over a kilometre as they made their way to the palace where the princess handed over a Reed to her father to honour him.

The cold and overcast weather in Nongoma, north of KwaZulu-Natal, did not deter the scores maidens from descending upon the palace to honour the king.

Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi meets with King Goodwill Zwelithini at the eNyokeni Royal Palace in Nongoma where thousands of maidens have descended for the annual reed dance. Video: Samkelo Mtshali/IOL.

Although the annual event was customarily for Zulu maidens, other maidens from provinces such as the Eastern Cape, Free State, Mpumalanga and Gauteng now join their counterparts from KwaZulu-Natal in this annual celebration.

Princess Cebo Zulu presents her father, King Goodwill Zwelithini, with a symbolic reed as a way to honour him and as a promise to keep her purity. Video: Samkelo Mtshali/IOL.

King Zwelithini is expected to address the maidens later on Saturday.