King Goodwill Zwelithini was a legendary monarch to the Zulu nation and a direct descendent of King Cetshwayo who led the Zulu nation during the war against the British in 1879. King Goodwill Zwelithini was also known for being an inordinate custodian of Zulu traditions and customs. It was therefore fitting that eNCA give him a sendoff befitting his stature and legacy.
eNCA’s Siphamandla Goge brought the nation frontline coverage from the Royal Palace in KwaNongoma that left viewers enthralled. South Africans shared their utmost gratitude on social media of the spectacular visuals of the funeral and gave Goge high praise for sharing the history of the Zulu Royal Family and the Zulu traditional displays as they unfolded. Goge along with eNCA Durban News Manager Thando Khanye, Cameramen, Bongumusa Mkhize, Nkanyiso Mdlalose and Joe Komane, Engineer, Mncedi Kemane, Content Producers, Sipho Ramaru and Gloria Xulu as well Reporter Thuba Vilane took us through the fetching of King Goodwill Zwelithini’s remains and the planting of the King during which Amabutho, the Zulu regiment, displayed their Zulu regalia and bid farewell to their King with Zulu traditional singing and dancing.
Barely had the Zulu nation come to terms with the loss of their beloved King, then they lost Queen Mantfombi Shiyiwe Dlamini Zulu who was acting as Regent. The Queen passed on 29 April 2021, having served as Regent Queen for less than a month and the cause of her demise is yet to be confirmed. Queen Mantfombi was sister to King Mswati III who is the King (Ingwenyama) of the Swati Nation. She was married to King Goodwill Zwelithini for 44 years. Her passing was devastating to the Zulu nation as well as to the Kingdom of Eswatini.
On Monday, 3 May eNCA’s Nqobile Madlala met with Zulu maidens in Johannesburg who were there to accompany Queen Mantfombi’s remains from Milpark Johannesburg to Kwa-Zulu Natal. Siphamandla Goge, Thulasizwe Simelane and Thuba Vilane along with camera operators, Thamsanqa Chamane, Bongumusa Mkhize and Nkanyiso Mdlalose took to KwaKhangelamankengane royal palace in Kwa-Zulu Natal to share and bring viewers once again close to the proceedings in a visually dramatic way. Despite the pandemic, the Zulu nation arrived in their numbers to pay homage to their King and Queen. It was evident that the Zulu nation are proud of their culture and tradition as evidenced by the Izintombi and Amabutho’s colourful traditional dress and dignified portrayal of Zulu songs and dances.
“The team worked hard to ensure that we provided excellent coverage for both of these high-profile funerals. From anchors and reporters to camera crew and content producers, the coverage was absolutely superb. There has been a wave of praise for Siphamandla on social media, which is well-deserved as he is the consummate professional who never fails to show his pride and passion for his heritage” says John Bailey, eNCA’s Managing Editor.
Goge joined eNCA in 2017 and has been covering events on the Zulu monarchy for a long time. His depth of knowledge, warm connection to his heritage, vast network of key people within the Zulu community and his inimitable story-telling style brings Zulu traditions and history to life. “I’ve always been captivated by the ability of our Zulu nation to preserve cultural pride and maintain cultural significance. eNCA has always been committed to capturing history in the making and by sharing these events, not only do we preserve our history but we showcase our beautiful culture and heritage to the world. The eNCA team are a pleasure to work with, as we strive to constantly raise the raise the bar on our coverage”, says Siphamandla Goge, eNCA’s Senior Reporter.