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Qumbu is located in Eastern Cape
 Qumbu shown within Eastern Cape
Qumbu is located in South Africa
Qumbu (South Africa)
Qumbu is located in Africa
Qumbu (Africa)
Coordinates: 31°09′42″S 28°52′05″E / 31.161667°S 28.868056°E / -31.161667; 28.868056Coordinates: 31°09′42″S 28°52′05″E / 31.161667°S 28.868056°E / -31.161667; 28.868056
Country South Africa
Province Eastern Cape
District O.R.Tambo
Municipality Mhlontlo
 • Total 42.31 km2 (16.34 sq mi)
Population (2011)[1]
 • Total 4,928
 • Density 120/km2 (300/sq mi)
Racial makeup (2011)[1]
 • Black African 98.8%
 • Coloured 0.5%
 • White 0.1%
 • Other 0.6%
First languages (2011)[1]
 • Xhosa 90.0%
 • English 3.3%
 • Sign language 1.9%
 • Zulu 1.1%
 • Other 3.7%
Time zone UTC+2 (SAST)
Postal code (street) 5180
PO box 5180
Area code 047
Photograph of the village of Qumbu in the background, with a local child in the foreground.

Qumbu is a village in O.R.Tambo District Municipality in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa.

The village is 61 km north of Mthatha and was founded in 1876. The name is of isiXhosa origin, derived from amazimba aqumbu, ‘the corn has budded’, or ‘the corn is swollen’, referring to a tribal war which occurred at that time of the year. It is also known by its Tribal fights during the 18th century, where Chief Mhlontlo was accused of killing the then Missioner Mr Hamilton Hope who helps in the foundation of the town Magistrate court. Mhlontlo was lately arrested in King Williams Town.

Qumbu was the first place in the Eastern Transkei homeland to have a Hospital named Sulenkama founded by the Missioner Mr Peterson. It lies on the north-east side of the Eastern Cape provincial border alongside the N2 route between Mthatha and Mt Frere, and the R396 between Tsolo and Maclear. It is bordered by King Sabata Dalindyebo Local Municipality to the south, Nyandeni Local Municipality to the east, Umzimvubu Local Municipality to the north [2]

The nearest hospital is Nessie Knight Hospital.[3]

In the 1990s a high level of stock theft in the area resulted in a low-level civil war that engulfed Qumbu and the nearby settlement of Tsolo.[4] This conflict left an estimated 400 people dead. In 2007 the area was still ranked as having one of the highest rates of stock theft in South Africa.[5]


  1. ^ a b c d "Main Place Qumbu". Census 2011.
  2. ^ "Dictionary of Southern African Place Names (Public Domain)". Human Science Research Council. p. 379.
  3. ^ Eastern Cape Dept of Health official website
  4. ^ Kynoch, Gary; Ulicki, Theresa (2001). "Cross-border Raiding and Community Conflict in the Lesotho-South African Border zone" (PDF). Queen’s University. p. 32. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
  5. ^ "An Overview of Stock Theft in South Africa". Retrieved 16 July 2016.