Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo

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Buyelekhaya Zwelinbanzi Dalindyebo a Sabata (born 1964), praise name Zwelibanzi, is a king of the abaThembu in South Africa.[1][2] He is the son of the previous king, Sabata Jonguhlanga Dalindyebo, a descendant of the amaHala dynasty, and ruler of the current bakwaDalindyebo lineage. In May 2005, he was indicted for fraud, murder, attempted murder, kidnapping and arson at the Mthatha High Court, and was subsequently convicted. In 2013, when Helen Zille was the Democratic Alliance (DA) party leader, the DA recruited Dalindyebo to join the party, despite his conviction, and at the time he shared the stage with Zille, Mmusi Maimane and Athol Trollip. The perception exists that he was recruited on the basis that he could bring votes to the DA in the Eastern Cape.[3]

In July 2014, a group of Thembu chiefs wrote to President Jacob Zuma requesting that Dalindyebo be removed, claiming he was an "evil king" and "not fit to rule".[4]

In October 2015 Dalindyebo was sentenced to 12 years in prison, and his membership of the DA was terminated.[5][6]

In December 2015, when Dalindyebo was due to start serving his prison sentence, he made last minute efforts to avoid incarceration by petitioning President Jacob Zuma for a presidential pardon.[7] The petition was dismissed at the end of December and he was incarcerated on the 30 December 2015.[8] It appears that a second bid for a presidential pardon was launched in early 2016.[9]

In January 2016 there were reports that he had been on hunger strike.[10] It appears that he has spent much of his first couple of months imprisonment in hospital.[11]

Dalindyebo has since been customarily dethroned, and is expected to be administratively dethroned in the near future.[12] The Presidency has now apparently withdrawn his kingship,[10] while no decision has as yet been taken on a replacement.[13] The Dalindyebo family has been evicted from the royal household[14] and Dalindyebo has now been removed from the payroll as King.[15]


  1. ^ "South African traditional states". Cahoon, Ben. Retrieved 26 August 2010.
  2. ^ Soszynski, Henry. "abaThembu". Genealogical Gleanings. University of Queensland. Archived from the original on 11 March 2011. Retrieved 28 August 2010.
  3. ^ "Redirecting..." Retrieved 2018-10-19.
  4. ^ "AbaThembu royal family want 'evil' King Dalindyebo out". City Press. Archived from the original on 3 August 2014. Retrieved 1 August 2014.
  5. ^ "Redirecting..." Retrieved 2018-10-19.
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-10-04. Retrieved 2015-10-04.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-12-25. Retrieved 2015-12-25.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  8. ^ "Masutha dismisses King's petition | IOL News". Retrieved 2018-10-19.
  9. ^ "Zuma refers bid to free Dalindyebo to Justice Minister". Retrieved 2018-10-19.
  10. ^ a b Sesant, Siyabonga. "Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo breaks hunger strike". Retrieved 2018-10-19.
  11. ^ "King Dalindyebo back in prison after hospital stay". News24. Retrieved 2018-10-19.
  12. ^ "Intrigue in the royal household as King Buyelekhaya Dalindyebo sits in jail". Times Live. 1 January 2016. Retrieved 3 January 2016.
  13. ^ Koyana, Xolani. "AbaThembu clan still undecided on Dalindyebo's replacement". Retrieved 2018-10-19.
  14. ^
  15. ^ "King Dalindyebo dumped from payroll | IOL News". Retrieved 2018-10-19.