President Cyril Ramaphosa will today deliver the eulogy at the Special Official Funeral of the late His Majesty King Goodwill Zwelithini KaBhekuzulu.
His Majesty passed away in the early hours of Friday, 12 March 2021, after an extended illness.
The King was interred which is referred to as ukutshala in isiZulu (meaning planting), in a private ceremony at midnight on Wednesday.
A special service in his honour will take place this morning.
President Ramaphosa honoured the King by granting him a Special Official Funeral Category 1.
“This category entails ceremonial elements provided by the South African National Defence Force,” a statement from the President’s Office read on Wednesday.
President Ramaphosa has also authorised that the National Flag be flown at half-mast at every flag station in the country from the morning of Saturday, 13 March 2021, until the evening of the funeral service.
The funeral service will be broadcast live on major broadcast channels and government social media platforms to assist those who may not be able to physically attend the service due to the current COVID-19 lockdown level 1 regulations.
KwaZulu-Natal Premier, Sihle Zikalala, has since reminded all dignitaries, visitors, and guests that the country was still under lockdown and that South Africa faces a “real” threat of the third wave.
He said the province is committed to doing everything to ensure that His Majesty’s service is not used as a reason to break any laws and regulations and that measures are in place to ensure that maximum safety and security is observed at the service.
“In whatever way, we choose to pay our last respects to His Majesty, we must do so with the appropriate decorum and dignity that does not in the end, sully the legacy of His Royal Highness, or indeed place his family and other mourners in danger of contracting the virus.”
Meanwhile, Zikalala has thanked every person from South Africa and abroad who have conveyed their message of condolences and sent words of comfort to the Royal Family and the people of the province.
The service will be streamed live on the following government online platforms:
• Twitter: https://twitter.com/GovernmentSA
• Facebook: https://web.facebook.com/GovernmentZA
• YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/GovernmentZA.