The KwaZulu-Natal provincial department of arts, culture and sport will soon be erecting the statue of the late Zulu nation monarch King Shaka kaSenzangokhona at the King Shaka International Airport, outside Durban.
Tabling the department’s budget vote on Thursday, Arts, Culture and Sport MEC, Hlengiwe Mavimbela, said the new statue is ready and department is in the process of appointing a service provider to construct the base of the statue.
“It is envisaged that the statue would be unveiled on 24 of September, which is the Heritage/King Shaka day,” she said.
The new statue will be replacing the one which the department had to remove after complaints from the late Zulu King, Goodwill Zwelithini kaBhekuzulu.
King Zwelithini had complained that the previous statue, which was created by renowned sculptor, Andries Botha, failed to capture the full image of Shaka as military strategist and leader of the Zulu nation.
That statue, which cost the department R3 million, showed the former Zulu nation ruler surrounded by cattle and without a spear or a shield which are often contained in artworks potraying King Shaka
King Zwelithini said at the time that the statue resembled that of a herd boy which was an insult to King Shaka’s legacy.
Mavimbela said King Zwelithini kaBhekuzulu, had approved the new statue before his passing in March.
“It is important to mention that the late His Majesty, the King gave his unequivocal endorsement of the statue during its sculpturing and completion,” Mavimbela said.