Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, the AmaZulu Traditional Prime Minister, celebrated his 95th birthday in the hospital. He had been in the hospital for over a month after experiencing complications from a routine back surgery.
Due to his recovery, the Zulu Royal Family decided to forgo the usual lavish festivities that accompany his birthday. However, they reported that Buthelezi is recovering well and his health has improved in the Intensive Care Unit.
Buthelezi initially went to the hospital for a check-up and had surgery for a pre-existing back condition. However, he experienced complications and the pain did not subside, leading to his readmission.
He has received well wishes from the African National Congress and his founding party, the Ikhatha Freedom Party.
South Africans have also sent their well wishes to Buthelezi, praising him as an African icon and one of Africa’s greatest statesmen.
Some have expressed their hope that he can now rest and recover fully, as being in and out of the hospital can be exhausting for him and his family.
In another story, Buthelezi has explained his role in the royal family after Queen Sibongile Dlamini-Zulu questioned his authority. She approached the court to nullify his role, believing that he had no actual authority.
Buthelezi responded in court papers, asserting that his position as the traditional prime minister grants him the authority to hold Royal Family meetings.
Queen Sibongile and her daughters believe that his position is constitutionally unrecognized and that he should not be allowed to engage in royal wars.
Pieter Groenewald, the leader of the Freedom Front Plus party, wished a happy 95th birthday to Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, the founder of the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP).
Groenewald believes that Buthelezi’s long life is a sign of God’s grace and hopes that he has a wonderful day and a quick recovery from the hospital.
Ganief Hendricks, the leader of the Al Jama-ah party, also extends his birthday wishes to Buthelezi, praising his role in building democracy in South Africa since 1994.
Thabo Makgoba, the Anglican Archbishop of Southern Africa, visited Buthelezi in the hospital and described the birthday celebration as beautiful and joyful.
The Buthelezi family is expected to provide an update on his health soon, with indications that he may be discharged from the hospital this week.