King Goodwill Zwelithini is getting more money. Zwelithini – who has often come under fire for his lavish spending – has maintained that he was entitled to the budget as it was derived from tax revenue generated by his subjects.
KwaZulu-Natal Premier Willies Mchunu announced during his budget vote for the 2018/19 financial year in the provincial legislature in Pietermaritzburg on Thursday that the Zulu monarch’s annual budget has been increased by R7-million‚ from R58.8-million last year to R65.8-million this year.
The premier’s office is responsible for the king’s support and the royal family‚ as well as the royal household trust which was established to make the Zulu royal family self-sustainable.
Mchunu said the royal household has been allocated R65‚8-million for this financial year‚ without elaborating on how the money would be spent. He also did not reveal how much will be allocated to the royal household trust.
Mchunu said during his speech that King Zwelithini would participate in various important ceremonies and traditional functions‚ such as the reed dance and first fruits ceremonies‚ which are all funded by the state.
He said his office would continue to support the royal household trust‚ whose responsibilities include the upkeep of the king’s eight palaces‚ tuition for his children‚ transportation and medical care of the royal family. The trust is also responsible for the upkeep of the king’s farms.
“We are committed to ensuring that there will be a much sharper focus on revenue-generating activities of the royal household trust in the current financial year. A revenue-generating plan has been developed to pursue public-private partnerships in exploring opportunities to utilise the Zulu royal household brand as a potential source of income to relieve the trust’s dependency on the provincial fiscus‚” said Mchunu.
However‚ he said the provincial government would ensure that King Zwelithini and the royal family are treated with the “dignity and respect and that the support received is commensurate with the position of being a monarch and custodian of Zulu traditional leadership”.
Early this year‚ in a bid to make the king and his family self-sustainable‚ it was announced that the royal household trust would be spending R650‚000 on a brand makeover of the Zulu king. The trust said it was planning to hire US-based consulting firm B&C International to handle the rebranding of the Zulu monarch.
The plan was contained in the trust’s revenue generation plan‚ which was presented to the Office of the Premier portfolio committee meeting.
Source: Times Live