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Compiled by Getrude Makhafola

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Another family row as grandkids accuse Zenani of hiding Madikizela-Mandela’s assets – report

Zondwa accuses Zenani of removing valuables in the guise of renovating Madikizela-Mandela's house.


Another spat is brewing in the family of the late statesman Nelson Mandela, this time over the assets of his ex-wife, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela.

This comes as Mandela’s personal items such as clothes, gifts and artefacts are being auctioned by his daughter Makaziwe, leaving the family divided.

Makaziwe is Mandela’s daughter with his first wife, Evelyn Mase.

According to the City Press, the stalwart’s grandchildren are accusing their aunt, Zenani Mandela-Dlamini, of hiding their grandmother’s assets and sideling them.

The assets include her Soweto home, vehicles, sentimental artefacts, handbag and funeral contributions.

The anti-apartheid struggle icon died in 2018.

Looming court case

Grandson, Zondwa Mandela, has subsequently filed for an interdict seeking to stop the master of the high court’s process to place Zenani solely in control of the assets.

In his affidavit filed on 10 January, Zondwa claimed that, as a result of his mother Zindziswa’s passing, he and his two siblings became direct heirs of Mandela’s estate and were cumulatively entitled to 50% of it.

He further stated that the dispute arose in 2020 when he became aware of a letter addressed to the master of the high court by Zenani’s attorneys, requesting that she be made the sole executor.

ALSO READ: ‘Robbing the children of SA’- Mandela’s grandson slams ‘disgraceful’ auction

In response, Zondwa’s attorneys wrote a letter to Zenani’s attorneys that same year, asserting his rights as a coexecutor.

The siblings instructed their attorneys to recognise Zondwa as coexecutor of the estate, replacing their late mother, and to safeguard their interests. They also requested a written undertaking that no assets will be moved.

Zenani’s lawyers refused to heed the request and plan to oppose Zondwa’s court application.

According to the report, Zondwa claims Zenani and her lawyers have failed to wind up Madikizela-Mandela’s estate five years after her death.

More accusations against Zenani

Zondwa told the publication that in 2021 he became aware – through a letter addressed to the master of the high court – that certain assets had been removed from Madikizela-Mandela’s home in Soweto.

“Zenani was acting without any direction from the master in respect of the removal of assets. My siblings and I had serious concerns regarding the removal of assets pending the winding up.

“The master should investigate the decisions to remove the assets and convene a meeting to recommend to the master the nomination of me or my siblings to be appointed executors of the estate,” Zondwa said in the papers.

He further alleged that Zenani extorted Zindziswa by telling her that she would return the removed items when his late mother returned one of Madikizela-Mandela’s handbags.

READ MORE: Madiba’s daughter says SAHRA, government trying to rob her of private property

In addition, Zondwa claimed that Zenani and her children had made a unilateral decision to renovate Madikizela-Mandela’s house.

“The arrangements to renovate the home into a museum were never formally discussed with me or any of my siblings.

“Nor, for that matter, were they ever communicated. There have been no renovations to the home thus far and the whereabouts of the assets that were removed for safekeeping are unknown.”

He claimed that Zenani had ulterior motives regarding the winding-up process.

Family disputes

The latest revelations in the Mandela family follow many previous quarrels and disagreements, including court battles.

Following her death last year, it emerged that Zoleka had compiled a list of relatives she did not want at her funeral.

Zoleka wrote the following words at the end of the list: “FYI, these men sexually abused me.”

Some of the people whose names were on the list were at the funeral service.

This list included prominent members of the Mandela family, including Mandla Mandela, Zenani Mandela senior, Zamaswazi Dlamini-Mandela and Zinhle Mandela among others.

Mandla denied that he sexually abused Zoleka. Granddaughter, Ndileka Mandela confirmed that the list was authentic.

NOW READ: Family member confirms authenticity of list of people Zoleka Mandela didn’t want at funeral

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assets Nelson Mandela Winnie Madikizela-Mandela

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