Row over who will lead family

Kathryn Kimberley and Xolisa Phillip

FORMER president Nelson Mandela’s eldest grandson, Mandla Mandela, was tight-lipped yesterday as a debate raged around him over who should head South Africa’s “royal family” following the death of his grandfather.

Traditional leaders and customary law experts were divided. While some backed the usually outspoken Mandla as the heir, others claimed that as Madiba’s eldest surviving child, Makaziwe was entitled to head the family.

Mandela died in his Houghton, Johannesburg, home on December 5.

He was buried in Qunu on Sunday.

The debate was sparked by a statement released by Mandela’s second wife, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, on Wednesday night placing 59-year-old Makaziwe as head of the family.


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