President Cyril Ramaphosa says the passing of His Majesty King Zwelonke Sigcawu is a reminder to people to use time wisely in performing good deeds and being of service to others.
“His Majesty’s passing is a reminder of the shortness of our life on this earth,” President Ramaphosa said.
Speaking at the funeral service of the late AmaXhosa King Zwelonke Sigcawu, held in Willovale, Ngadu, in the Eastern Cape, President Ramaphosa said as a nation, the country has lost a leader who was a pillar of the community and a solid partner of government.
“We are saddened, but we know that no matter how much we wish to, we cannot hold back the hand of fate. It was His Majesty’s time to leave us,” President Ramaphosa said.
He said the late King has left behind a legacy of visionary leadership that lives on.
“He may have passed on to the next life, but the example he set on the meaning of leadership, on advancing social cohesion, and on service to one’s fellow man and women, will be imparted beyond his brief time on earth,” he said.
President Ramaphosa described the late King as a leader whose impact and influence extended beyond the country’s borders.
“The tributes that have poured in from Botswana, eSwatini, Lesotho, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Palestine, Venezuela and many other countries are proof of how he was not only recognised but revered by others beyond our country.
“We are immensely comforted by the condolences and messages of support. Such gestures of solidarity go a long way in affirming our oneness as Africans,” the President said.
King Zwelonke Sigcawu’s coronation took place in 2015 at Nqadu Great Place.
His Majesty became King of AmaXhosa in 2006 and led his people until his passing on 14 November 2019.
The King died after a short illness at the age of 51.
He was also the first King in South Africa to be crowned in 2015 after the democratic recognition of traditional leadership.
The King’s funeral featured military ceremonial elements in accordance with the Category 1 status of this occasion.
President Ramaphosa ordered that the National Flag fly at half-mast throughout the country from 25 November 2019 until the evening of 29 November 2019.
Meanwhile, Nkosi Dumehleli Mapasa has been named acting King of AmaXhosa.
Mapasa, who is in his early 80s, will hold the fort until the process of installing a new king begins.SAnews.gov.za