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Eastern Cape
Apr 15 2013 1:19AM
 
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SITHANDIWE VELAPHI

Premier Noxolo Kiviet said royal families should be able to solve traditional leadership disputes and not resort to courts of law.

She was speaking at the Saturday burial of King Justice Mpondombini Sigcau at the Qawukeni Great Place in Lusikisiki.

Sigcau, 71, died of a stroke on March 25 while awaiting ruling of the Constitutional Court on the legitimacy of his Pondoland kingship. In 2010, President Zuma announced through findings of the Nhlapo Commission, that Mpondombini was not the legitimate king of the Mpondo and declared Zanozuko Tyelovuyo Sigcau, king. The latter is Mpondombini’s nephew.

The late king had disputed the findings of the commission and contested his kingship at North Gauteng High Court. He lost the battle and took the matter to the Constitutional Court.

Even though Sigcau had gone to the courts as a result of outcomes by a commission set up by the president to probe legitimacy of kingships, Kiviet criticised such action. She said such disputes were better resolved by affected royal family members.

“It does not help when traditional leaders took matters to court to be decided by judges who do not have a full understanding of those matters,” she said.

Last month Kiviet told a handful of traditional leaders in Mthatha the provincial government needed to review salaries given to traditional leaders, saying that would help stop “so many claims” by them.

“I think we should look at the policy of giving salaries to traditional leaders because this is where the problems originate.”

Mpondombini’s funeral was also attended by Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Richard Baloyi, Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula and Tourism Deputy Minister Tokozile Xasa.

Guests who spoke during the funeral praised Mpondombini for his contribution towards bettering the communities of his nation.

provinces@thenewage.co.za

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