Winnie should have approached elders - AbaThembu

Johannesburg - Winnie Madikizela-Mandela should have approached the elders in the AbaThembu before launching a claim on the estate of former president Nelson Mandela, the AbaThembu clan said on Friday.

"It would be appropriate if Nkosikazi Winnie Madikizela-Mandela thought of approaching the elders before circulating her interest in the media," said royal spokesperson Daludumo Mtirara.

"She would be properly informed of the custom of AbaThembu and, in the meantime, Nkosikazi Nosizwe [Gra?a Machel - Mandela's widow] is our point of entry in the Mandela house regarding any matter.”

Madikizela-Mandela is challenging Mandela's estate and is seeking the rights to his home in Qunu, Eastern Cape.

Madikizela-Mandela's lawyer Mvuyo Notyesi reportedly wrote to deputy chief justice Dikgang Moseneke, a co-executor of the will, two weeks ago.

In the letter Notyesi argued that AbaThembu custom dictated that the rights to the property go to Madikizela-Mandela and her descendants.

"This position becomes applicable irrespective of whether the wife was divorced or not," Notyesi was quoted as writing.

"It is only in this home that the children and grandchildren of Mrs Madikizela-Mandela can conduct their own customs and tradition..."

Supporting affidavits would be filed from AbaThembu elders and King Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo, among others.

‘Winnie has no claim’

It was not an attack on his will, but an assertion of customary and traditional rights, the letter said.

Mtirara said Madikizela-Mandela had no claim over Mandela's estate.

"Because of the fact that the site [land] was only dedicated to Nkosi Dalibhunga [Mandela] in person as the head of the Mandela house, divorce marked the end of Nkosikazi Winnie Madikizela-Mandela as the member of the Mandela house."

Mtirara said the land in Qunu on which the house was built was allocated to former president Mandela as a sign of appreciation of the role the statesman had played during the liberation struggle.

"The land was neither sold to him nor his former wife, Nkosikazi Winnie Madikizela-Mandela. Some of the family members were part of the delegation during the demarcation process in Qunu," he said.

"Nkosi Dalibhunga [Mandela] developed the site while he was still serving the people of South Africa on a full-time basis. We linked that site to him because it had nothing to do with his former wife at the time."

According to the AbaThembu custom, after a divorce, a former wife can claim a stake that belongs to their former husband in the name of their children, a son in particular and not daughters and grandchildren from their daughters, he said.

"Her [Madikizela-Mandela] current situation does not allow her to claim in the name of her son, who should be the heir in her former house.

"Daughters belong to their in-laws and those that are unmarried would be allowed to stay and practise our culture, including their children if so required."

Madikizela-Mandela, however, is allowed to join the family during rituals and cultural practices.

Mtirara accused Dalindyebo of creating confusion and division within the AbaThembu royals.

"We are quite aware that Zwelibanzi Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo has a potential of dividing families and we would like to warn him that his family is quite clear about his unreasonable disrupting tactics," he said.

Madikizela-Mandela, Mandela's second wife for 38 years, was left out of Mandela's will, which was released in February following his death on 5 December last year.

Louis Van Den Elst 2014/08/08 11:24:58 PM
Amazing how Africans who I've a good western lifestyle and enjoy the fruits , always goes back to custom believes . Make up your mind what you want to be
Luthando Yaso 2014/08/08 11:33:22 PM
Does this Mtirara want to be the king of the Thembus?I think the person causing confusion is him.
@Thabo.Shaku 2014/08/08 11:44:37 PM
After the fact!
Luvo Mvinjwa 2014/08/09 12:37:16 AM
I also think that this Daludumo Mtirara has a vested interest and wants to be the king. He muat just come out and say it, icace naku thathatha uba ufuna ukuba yikumkani yaba Thembu
Erna Westdyk 2014/08/09 12:47:11 AM
This is all about money - culture has nothing to do with it.
Ame Ombre 2014/08/09 04:46:55 AM
Winnie's disrespect for Mr Nelson Mandela and the elders is the effect of her pride and arrogance! Her careless attitude indicates clear lack of love, respect and her self-esteem is the greatest proof of defective intellect!
Mduduzi Mthethwa 2014/08/09 05:11:11 AM
Anything with this weed smoking king is bound to fail. No wonder even DA is not bothering about this king. Winnie just take a back sit n relax mama. You had your time with tata and you screwed up.
On The Edge 2014/08/09 05:31:22 AM
As a whitie, all I have to say is that it is not a whities place to comment, at all, against this thread/article/story. It has got F-all to do with you, so keep your comments to yourself unless you have some or other vested interest in this case, for example, you are married to a black African, etc... get it, got it, good...
Adrianh 2014/08/09 05:39:23 AM
She's just another money grabbing old fool who is not worthy of even being in Nelson Mandela's shadow let alone his home.
Phinda Lucky 2014/08/09 06:13:44 AM
i that mama winny is frustraded,let her enjoy the draw back of the divorce.why cant she allowed the spirit of the world icon to rest in peace? She has no respect for those who are in the grave yard.aaaagggg man winny stop this nonses