Law enforcement agencies say they will make sure that all vehicles, including buses, that will transport maidens to the annual Reed Dance ceremony at Nongoma in the north of KwaZulu-Natal this weekend, are roadworthy.
There were fatal crashes that claimed the lives of some maidens returning from the Reed Dance in 2013 and 2019.
Thousands of maidens are expected to travel to the eNyokeni Royal Palace at Nongoma to participate in the event.
KwaZulu-Natal Road Traffic Inspectorate spokesperson, Zinhle Mngomezulu says they will check even the co-drivers of buses to make sure that they are not driving under the influence of alcohol.
Mngomezulu says, “We are going to ensure that the public transport that is going to transport maidens to KwaNongoma is roadworthy including the drivers. We will be checking the fitness of the drivers and the co-drivers. Another concern is drunk and driving, so, we will ensure that we check the alcohol level in all the drivers that are going to participate or transport maidens to eNyokeni and ensure their soberness.”
Earlier this month, the faction in the AmaZulu Royal Family that supports Prince Simakade said the upcoming uMkhosi Womhlanga or Reed Dance might result to undesired consequences if government goes ahead with planning the event to be staged at eNyokeni Royal Palace.
Last month Prince Simakade performed the ‘entering the kraal’ ritual at eNyokeni Royal Palace while King Misuzulu performed the similar ritual at Kwakhangelamankengane Royal Palace the following weekend.
Spokesperson of Prince Simakade’s faction , Prince Mandlakapheli Zulu says if King Misuzulu and his supporters come to eNyokeni that will be viewed as an act of extreme provocation.
“We have a totally different view that people should continue where they started off kwaKhangelamankengane to perform what they want to perform there, because we used eNyokeni as the sacred kraal and the people know and the nation knows that eNyokeni is the sacred kraal.”
“So before you could perform any ritual at eNyokeni maybe they should usher him into the kraal eNyokeni to perform what we did to King Simakade and then maybe after that we can say yes he is the king” says Prince Mandlakayipheli.
VIDEO: Faction supporting Prince Simakade calls for reed dance to be halted: