Durban – King Goodwill Zwelithini is broke and cannot even afford to pay for groceries for his household, which includes six wives and 27 children.
The KwaZulu-Natal government would now have to bankroll the king, who already received R54.2 million annual support from the national government.
According to the report the trust set up to ensure the royal household was self-sufficient, was broke.
Royal Household Trust chairman, Judge Jerome Ngwenya, said the reason for the trust’s difficulties was that it was never fully costed and budgeted for.
The trust, set up five years ago by the provincial government, was meant to replace the royal household department, but both were now operating.
“Whatever money that the trust has received to date was transferred from the department as if the trust is 1/8an 3/8 entity of the department,” Ngwenya was quoted as saying.
“The department, despite all agreements reached with the trust and reduced to writing, has failed to transfer monies as per the agreement 1/8and 3/8 instead transferred lesser amounts.”
The stand-off between the department and the trust meant the trust could no longer give a stipend to the king’s household.
The trust’s acting financial officer Bonginkosi Qunta told the KwaZulu-Natal finance committee last week the trust had no money.
Neither Ngwenya or Qunta could say how the trust had spent its allocation, or how much money the trust had received to date.