04/07/2018 14:45 BST | Updated 04/07/2018 14:46 BST

Traditional Leaders Say Motlanthe 'Swore At Zulu Nation'

'These pieces of land left with the king and Amakhosi were actually coal reserves.'

Khaya Ngwenya / City Press / Gallo Images / Getty Images
IFP leader and prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, former KwaZulu-Natal premier Senzo Mchunu and King Goodwill Zwelithini.

Public spats between former president Kgalema Motlanthe and King Goodwill Zwelithini have reached boiling point, with the KwaZulu-Natal House of Traditional Leaders saying the former president "swore at the Zulu nation".

This is after Motlanthe referred to the Amakhosi as "village tinpot dictators" during the ANC's land summit in Boksburg earlier this year.

Inkosi Phathisizwe Chiliza, chairperson of the KZN House of Traditional Leaders, says it was a swear word directed at the house, EWN reported.

He was speaking to thousands of Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini's subjects, who were gathered at the Ulundi regional sport's complex on Wednesday to hear how the land under the Ingonyama Trust should be protected.

IFP leader and prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi said it's shameful that a black government is behaving the same way the apartheid regime did when dealing with issues of land.

"These pieces of land left with the king and Amakhosi were actually coal reserves."

Buthelezi says that since the early 2000s, government has failed to honour its promise to clarify the role of traditional leaders within the Constitution.

The trust has been engulfed in controversy recently, following Motlante's land report.

According to the report, the trust should be repealed or amended, because its implementation has infringed on the individual land rights of beneficiaries.

If the trust is repealed, it would lead to the government taking ownership of the land, pending, it would be hoped, its redistribution via transferral of title deeds and ownership to the people who live on it and farm it.

The panel's report is under review in Parliament.