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I don't want to be wife No 14

By unknown | Oct 10, 2008 | COMMENTS [ 4 ]

Cecil Motsepe

Cecil Motsepe

Sowetan has tracked down a Swaziland teenager who has fled to South Africa to escape being one of the many wives of that country's monarch.

She was nervous but confirmed that her family was visited by a delegation from the Swazi Royal House.

Both King Mswati III and his royal council have failed to comment on the girl's claim and the incident leading to her leaving Swaziland.

"I am not very free," she said. "I should not be talking."

But then she said: "I cannot imagine myself being one of them. I was both shocked and flattered when I was told about the king's plan to marry me."

Tandzile Ngwenya, 19, is in South Africa after spurning the autocratic ruler's sexual advances.

She did not want to discuss the matter further, saying she might get into trouble or people might "get to my parents".

Had the Mbabane-born girl agreed to marry Mswati, she would have been wife number 14.

"They told my mother I had been chosen," she said. "I decided to make a dash for it and my mother agreed."

Sowetan has been reliably informed that the polygamous monarch had spotted the girl at a reed dance ceremony in 2006. She was 17 at the time.

The smitten king sent his delegation to the girl's home in Mbabane two weeks after the yearly reed dance.

Sowetan caught up with Tandzile, and she reluctantly confirmed her dilemma.

She said: "When my mother told me that the king's delegation had come for me I was both shocked and flattered."

But Tandzile, who is studying at the University of Johannesburg, spurned the king's advances and relocated to Nelspruit in Mpumalanga.

She eventually moved to Johannesburg.

Tandzile told Sowetan she had no intention of returning to her home country until she was certain that nothing would happen to her.

Mswati's father, King Sobhuza II, had at least 70 wives.


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Ok Mr Cecil Motsepe. I hope that your story is genuine this time around. I wonder if U really studied Journalism or just a pawn. You are a True liability to this good paper. A true paparazi journalist. Where I live, U are well known for fabrication of stories. With all due respect, I really don't think you deserve to be working for this great paper. You are one of the few journalists who will really destroy media freedom in South Africa.

Aug 05, 2010 7:53 | 0 replies

Good gal. U did well by running way than have everything and be miserable. you will one day find a husband of your own that one will not be yours alone you were going to share.

Aug 10, 2010 11:5 | 0 replies

why run away from all that money

Nov 21, 2011 10:49 | 0 replies

does the King use a condom - some of the wives ba ya jola - becuase he might say he takes them while they still virgins - which we are not sure of

May 07, 2012 3:35 | 0 replies