There’s sadness in the African kingdom of Eswatini as it has been announced that King Mswati III’s 12th wife has died at the age of 31.
Nothando Dube, also known as Inkhosikati LaDube, died after a battle with skin cancer. She died at a South African hospital where she was undergoing treatment.
Traditional Governor, Lusendvo Fakudze, confirmed the death on eSwatini Broadcasting and Information Services (EBIS). Her funeral will be held today after a vigil took place first at a royal residence on Saturday.
“The funeral of the Inkhosikati will be on Sunday after a vigil that will be held at the Ludzidzini Royal Residence,” he said.
The King’s eldest daughter, who is by his third wife, Princess Sikhanyiso Dlamini posted two tributes to the royal on her personal Instagram. One post called Nothando Dube, “Soul. Beauty. Grace. Boldness.”
She confirmed that Nothando died from cancer replying to a comment on her page saying, “She was strong till the end though; she outlived the months prescribed by her oncologists.”
Nothando Dube was born on 6 February 1988. She leaves behind three children with the King: Princess Makhosothando, Prince Betive, and Princess Mahlemalangeni.
She was known to have had a hard time in palace life, and in 2011, she told British publications that she was wanted to be freed from house arrest, adding that she had not seen or spoken to the King since 2010 – the year she was caught in an affair and banished from the palace. She also reportedly claimed she’d been abused by security guards.
King Mswati is Africa’s last absolute monarch and took the throne in April of 1986. His Majesty is believed to have had 15 wives; although, two of those wives have now died. Another wife of his, Inkhosikati LaMasango, took her own life last year. He also has 23 children.
In April of last year, the King changed the country’s name from Swaziland to Eswatini.