Dignitaries pay tribute to late Chief Muhlava

Hosi Samuel Muhlava II of the Nkuna tribe is no more.
Hosi Samuel Muhlava II of the Nkuna tribe is no more.

Dignitaries visited the Muhlava Royal Palace, outside Tzaneen in Limpopo, at the weekend to pay tribute to Chief Samuel Muhlava II, who died on Saturday after a long illness.

MEC for traditional affairs in the provinc Basikopo Makamu described Muhlava, 76, as a selfless traditional leader who had the best interest of his people at heart.

"The Nkuna tribe has lost a great leader who was accessible at all times. He made an
active contribution to his communities. He was in the forefront of several land claims for his people and even bought some farms to accommodate those in need," he said.

Makamu said Muhlava should be remembered as a unifier who accommodated every tribe in his land. "He fought against tribalism and allowed people from different tribes to live in his land."

Makamu was accompanied by MEC for economic development Thabo Mokone and chaiperson of Limpopo House of Traditional Leaders Kgoshi Malesela Dikgale.

Family spokesperson Ntombi Muhlava said the family planned to have a memorial service for the late leader who presided over the Nkuna tribe for 48 years after the Covid-19 lockdown.

"Details will be announced at a later stage and we are going to adhere to the lockdown regulations," she said.

A statement released by the Muhlava Royal House reads: "It is with great sadness to inform you of the passing on of Hosi Mohlaba II (sic) after a long illness. A giant has fallen, the whole Mohlaba/Shilubana family and clan is in mourning."

The funeral will take place on Friday at the royal palace but is reserved for family members only.

Muhlava was born on January 27 1944 at Muhlava village. He was installed as the chief of the Nkuna tribe in July 1972.

Chief Muhlava II served as a minister in the former Gazankulu homeland in different departments from 1983 to 1991.

He also orchestrated the building of more than 40 schools around 44 villages that fell under him.

He is survived by his wife Catherine Sasavona Nwa-Mavundza Muhlava and eight children. His brother Ribye Charles Muhlava is the acting senior traditional leader at the moment.

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