Johannesburg: Former South African president Nelson Mandela's grandson was removed from his tribal position on Sunday over an ongoing family feud over gravesites, Xinhua reported. The development occurred as the anti-apartheid leader Mandela remains in a critical but stable condition, spending his fourth week in a Pretoria hospital due to chronic lung infection.
Mandla Mandela has been expelled "from all rank of duties" over the family feud, said King Zwelibanzi Dalindyebo of the Thembu tribe, to which Mandela belongs. He said Mandla, a chieftain in the Mvezo area of the Eastern Cape province, would not be allowed any involvement in tribal affairs until he apologises.
After the family feud erupted, the Dalindyebo, a cousin to Nelson Mandela, accused Mandla of disrespecting his culture and family while describing him "controversial" and "opportunistic". The family feud centres on where Mandela's three children should be buried.
Mandla wanted them to be buried in Mvezo where he took over the tribal chieftaincy from Mandela after the latter became president in 1994. But other family members insist on the family burial in Qunu village, where Mandela spent his childhood. Though Mandela was born in Mvezo, but he has expressed his willingness to be buried in Qunu, according to his family.
Mandla removed the remains of the three from Qunu to Mvezo in 2011 without the approval of other family members, who filed a lawsuit against him late last month. After the court ruling, the remains were exhumed from Mvezo and reburied in Qunu last week.