Mhlaba Memela

Mhlaba Memela

KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sbu Ndebele has promised to erect more statues of traditional leaders to remind people of their heritage.

Ndebele made the promise to thousands of people who mingled with King Goodwill Zwelithini and Chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi at the weekend to celebrate the king's birthday.

Ndebele said the government would erect a statue of the current Zulu monarch, King Goodwill, and one of his late father, King Cyprian.

"We have projects in place to honour heroes, especially the traditional leaders," Ndebele said.

"The road to reconciliation is long and winding. It constitutes getting to know the past, and understanding what happened, how it happened, why it happened and when it happened and who did it."

Ndebele said the government would also recognise Inkosi Dingiswayo kaJobe, who played a key role in coaching and mentoring King Shaka kaSenzangakhona.

"We will also recognise the legacy of King Dingane. And the multimedia centre that depicts the history of the eMakhosini Valley is now under construction," he said.

He said that in 2010 the Moses Mabhida Stadium, which is under construction in Durban. will be an informative and generic multimedia centre where visitors will get the full story of the Zulu people and the people of KwaZulu-Natal.

Ndebele said in December they will unpack the British Ultimatum of December 11 1878, now represented by the historic Ultimatum Tree on the banks of the uThukela River, also the scene of the battle of eNdondakusuka on December 2 1856.

He said heritage was at the core of the African identity and played pivotal role in reconciliation.

"To reconcile is to become at peace with the past. You cannot reconcile unless you know what happened."

"New legislation on the heritage of KwaZulu-Natal is now at a stage where hearings are being conducted by the legislature.

"This will see local heritage forums being formed in every municipal ward and in every traditional community."