Queen Mantfombi MaDlamini Zulu has been announced as the interim ruler of the Zulu nation pending the installation of a new king to succeed the late Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini KabhekuZulu, Newsroom Afrika has reported.

Queen Mantfombi MaDlamini Zulu is the sister to King Mswati III and got married to King Zwelithini in 1977. They have eight children.

King Zwelithini, 72, passed away in the early hours of Friday morning, 12 March, following his admission to hospital in February to deal with his diabetes.

ALSO READ: King Goodwill Zwelithini passes on

King Zwelithini, the eighth monarch of the Zulu Kingdom, was initially admitted to hospital due to “several unstable glucose readings” that had raised concern with his doctors.

Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, the traditional Prime Minister to the Zulu Monarch and nation, made the announcement of the king’s death through a statement, saying the king’s health had taken a turn for the worse.

“It is with utmost grief that I inform the nation of the passing of his Majesty King Goodwill Zwelithini ka Bhekuzulu, King of the Zulu nation,” Buthelezi said at the time.

“Tragically, while still in hospital, his Majesty’s health took a turn for the worse and he subsequently passed away in the early hours of this morning.”

OBITUARY: The life and times of Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini

King Zwelithini was born on 14 July 1948 at Nongoma in KwaZulu-Natal. He was the eldest son of King Cyprian Bhekuzulu and his second wife, Queen Thomo.

He has six wives and 28 children.

Additional reporting by Thapelo Lekabe 

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