SAPS withdraws VIP protection for new Zulu king Misuzulu
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In a surprise move, the South African Police Services have withdrawn the provision of VIP protection services to the Zulu royal palace amid tension following the announcement of the new Zulu King.
This was announced by Mangosuthu Buthelezi, Prime Minister of the Zulu nation, in a very late statement on Saturday.
Prince Misuzulu was announced as the successor to his father King Goodwill Zwelithini’s throne during the reading of his mother Queen regent Mantfombi ’s will.
The meeting turned into chaos after some royal members questioned the will and the new king had to be whisked away.
However, he returned to the palace the following day to meet the elderly of the royal family, but the situation remains tense.
On Saturday night Buthelezi said the news came from the newly appointed king’s current palace KwaKhangelamankengane Royal Palace that members of the SAPS VIP Protection Unit have been instructed to withdraw.
He said he had not been informed prior to the decision and he was deeply distressed by the news.
“They will therefore no longer provide security for His Majesty the King. It is understood that those at the Palace will withdraw tonight, while those providing security where His Majesty will be staying tonight, will withdraw in the morning.
“Neither I nor His Majesty the King, nor any other member of the Royal Family, have been informed of this decision by the government.
“Nevertheless, members of the SAPS stationed at the Palace have received these instructions from the Provincial Commissioner, purportedly on the basis that His Majesty has not yet been installed by Government and is thus not entitled to VIP protection.
“My understanding from years of public service is that SAPS security is not provided on the basis of status, but on the basis of a threat assessment. It seems perfectly clear that His Majesty the King would be placed in a vulnerable position if security were to be withdrawn at this point.
“Despite the clear and present danger this poses, I am informed that the Brigadier in Charge of the SAPS Protectors stationed at the Palace has confirmed to Advocate Mshololo, who is also present at the Palace, that they have been instructed to withdraw. Both the Zulu Royal Family and the Swati Royal Family are shocked by this sudden development.
“I therefore appeal to the nation to assist us in finding a way to continue security for His Majesty the King, to ensure that he is protected at this critical time,”said Buthelezi.