High Court declares Ndebele king coronation null, void

BULAWAYO High Court judge Justice Martin Makonese yesterday declared as null and void the planned coronation of South Africa-based Bulelani Collins Khumalo as Ndebele king.


Peter Zwide Kalanga Khumalo, who was recently introduced to the people as the heir apparent to the throne as King Lobengula – Nyamande II had filed an urgent chamber application against the South Africa-based Bulelani Khumalo over the kingship.

He cited Chief Mathema, Royal Crown Trust and Bulelani Khumalo as respondents.

Justice Makonese ruled in Zwide Khumalo’s favour declaring the intended coronation of Bulelani as illegal.

“The course of action taken by the respondents in seeking to coronate the third respondent is declared to be unlawful by reason of it not being in keeping with the customs of succession to the Ndebele king’s throne,” Makonese ruled.

“Pending the finalisation of this matter, applicant is hereby granted relief of a prohibitory interdict be and is hereby issued binding over the respondent not to proceed with the installation of the third respondent as king of the Ndebele people on March 3.”

In his application, Zwide Khumalo said he was identified as the heir to the Ndebele king’s throne and as such unveiled on February 17 as King Lobengula Nyamande II and awaited coronation. He said he had since issued summons for declaratur that he was the person to ascend to the Ndebele king’s throne. Zwide Khumalo said this had been necessitated by the unlawful process put in motion by the respondents who today intended to coronate Bulelani as king.
In his founding affidavit, Zwide Khumalo said in November 1893 King Lobengula, the Ndebele monarch was overthrown by the British proxy army, the British South Africa Company Police.

“In or about June 21, 1896 and at Entumbane, Mhlahlandlela, Lobengula’s son Nyamande was coronated king of the Ndebele people. No one succeeded King Nyamande and the Ndebele people remained without a king for a long time,” he submitted.

He said the Ndebele people have remained determined to revive the kingdom and through a meeting for the identification of the crown prince they identified him. He said during the identification process all late King Lobengula houses were represented. He said he had since been unveiled to the people and what was left was for him to be coronated.

Zwide Khumalo said he learnt with shock that Bulelani was to be crowned today, hence, he was seeking an interdict to stop the process. Government last week banned Bulelani’s coronation on grounds it was unconstitutional.


  1. Zimbabwe is a Republic. will never be a kingdom again. kings and chiefs only serve themselves and their families democracy is the best option

  2. Would the outcome have been the same if it was a Shona King?

  3. As a Ndebele myself, i don’t see any reason why we should restore the Kingdom. In modern times i don’t think anyone wants to work for someone who is doing nothing for the public but besides, this will drag us back to colonialism.

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