Sun. Jul 21st, 2024

In principle, the aspiration for leadership knows no bounds, yet the ability to embody true leadership remains elusive for many. Genuine leadership shines brightest in times of adversity, as exemplified by historical figures like Nelson Mandela and contemporary leaders such as Dr. Meshack Radebe and Sipho Mlaba.

Recent events, however, paint a starkly different picture, showcasing leadership failures at the 110th commemoration of Zulu King Dinuzulu kaCetshwayo’s passing at KwaCeza.

During the ceremony, both Zulu Traditional Prime Minister, Rev Thulasizwe Buthelezi, and KwaZulu-Natal Economic Development, Tourism, and Environmental Affairs MEC Siboniso Duma displayed a lack of leadership, albeit to varying degrees. Buthelezi’s deviation from the event’s protocol, venturing into political discourse, ignited tensions leading to an unfortunate altercation that left 16 individuals hospitalized.

While Buthelezi’s actions were regrettable, Duma’s conduct exacerbated the situation. Interrupting Buthelezi mid-speech and instructing the king’s praise singer without regard for protocol demonstrated a lack of respect and decorum.

Moreover, the subsequent endorsement of Duma’s actions by the provincial executive committee (PEC) of the ANC raises further concerns about leadership within the party. Statements dismissing the position of Zulu traditional prime minister and citing legislative grounds to justify this stance undermine the authority of King Misuzulu kaZwelithini and cast doubt on the PEC’s motives.

Questions regarding the timing and motivation behind the PEC’s stance, coupled with contradictory statements regarding apologies to the king and President Cyril Ramaphosa, highlight inconsistencies within the ANC’s leadership ranks.

As the fallout from the incident unfolds, it is imperative for KwaZulu-Natal Premier Nomusa Dube-Ncube to engage with the king and the president privately, avoiding further public discord.

In reflecting on these events, it becomes evident that true leadership transcends political agendas and personal ambitions. It demands humility, integrity, and a commitment to upholding the dignity and traditions of all involved.

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