Early lifeMangosuthu was born on 27 August 1928, in Mahlabathini, KwaZulu, to Chief Mathole Buthelezi and Princess Magogo kaDinuzulu, the sister of King Solomon kaDinuzulu, and daughter of King Dinuzulu. He was educated at Impumalanga Primary School, Mahashini, Nongoma from 1933 to 1943, then at Adams College, Amanzimtoti from 1944 to 1947.Adams College
ChieftainshipButhelezi inherited the chieftainship of the large Buthelezi tribe in 1953: a position he still holds today. In 1963 and 1964, he served as adviser on the film ''Zulu (1964 film), Zulu'' about the Battle of Rorke's Drift. Buthelezi also acted in the film, playing the role of his real-life great-grandfather, King Cetshwayo kaMpande. In 1970, Buthelezi was appointed leader of the KwaZulu territorial authority and in 1976 became Chief Minister of KwaZulu, chief minister of the quasi-independent Bantustan of KwaZulu. The emerging Black Consciousness Movement of the 1970s branded him an Apartheid regime collaborator, because of his strong anti-Communist beliefs. However, he consistently declined homeland independence and political deals until was released from prison and the ban on the African National Congress was lifted.
Inkatha Freedom PartyIn 1975, Buthelezi started Inkatha Freedom Party#History, Inkatha National Cultural Liberation Movement with the blessing of the African National Congress (ANC), but broke away from the ANC in 1979 and his relationship with the ANC sharply deteriorated. He was encouraged by Oliver Tambo, the President of the ANC mission-in-exile, to revive the cultural movement. In the mid-1970s, it was clear that many in the Black Consciousness Movement were at odds with Buthelezi's politics. For instance, during the funeral of Robert Sobukwe he was barred from attending the service since they argued that he was a notable collaborator of the National Party (South Africa), National Party government. In 1979, Inkosi Buthelezi and the Inkatha Yenkululeko Yesizwe, as it was then known, severed ties with the main ANC since the ANC favoured military strategies by employing the use of Umkhonto we Sizwe, uMkhonto we Sizwe, "Spear of the Nation". The meeting that was held in London between the two organisations did not succeed in ironing out differences. In 1982, Buthelezi opposed the National Party government's plan to cede the Ingwavuma region in northern Natal Province, Natal to the Government of Swaziland. The courts decided in his favour on the grounds that the government had not followed its own Black Constitution Act of 1972, which required consultation with the people of the region. He was also instrumental in setting up the teacher training and nursing colleges throughout the late-1970s and the early-1980s. He requested Harry Oppenheimer, his great friend and ally, to establish Mangosuthu Technikon in Umlazi, south of Durban. He maintained a friendship with journalist Jani Allen.
Mahlabatini Declaration of FaithOn 4 January 1974, Transvaal Province, Transvaal leader of the United Party (South Africa), United Party, Harry Schwarz, met with Mangosuthu Buthelezi and signed the Mahlabatini Declaration of Faith. They agreed on a five-point plan for racial peace in South Africa. The declaration's purpose was to provide a blueprint for government of South Africa for racial peace in South Africa. It called for negotiations involving all peoples, to draw up constitutional proposals stressing opportunity for all with a Bill of rights, Bill of Rights to safeguard these rights. It suggested that the federal concept was the appropriate framework for such changes to take place. It also first affirmed that political change must take place through non-violent means. The declaration was the first of such agreements by acknowledged black and white leaders in South Africa that affirmed to these principles. The commitment to the peaceful pursuit of political change was declared at a time when neither the National Party nor African National Congress were looking for peaceful solutions or dialogue. The declaration was heralded by the English speaking press as a breakthrough in race relations in South Africa. The declaration was endorsed by several chief ministers of the black homelands, including Cedric Phatudi (Lebowa), Lucas Mangope (Bophuthatswana) and Hudson William Edison Ntsanwisi, Hudson Ntsanwisi (Gazankulu). The declaration also received praise from liberal figures such as Alan Paton.
Paramilitary accusationsButhelezi was said to have been working with General Magnus Malan in training the youth of Ulundi, and other parts of the erstwhile KwaZulu, in setting up a paramilitary unit ostensibly since he feared that a lot of property and life were lost during the conflicts of 1984 to 1994. He was even implicated in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (South Africa), Truth and Reconciliation Commission Report as a person who was responsible for the gross violations of human rights, but before the report was published he took them to court and before the court's ruling, Buthelezi and the Truth Commission, agreed to settle out of court.
Meeting with Mandela and the electionsButhelezi at first refused to stand at the 1994 general election, but chose to enter at the very last minute; after a meeting held on 8 April, where Nelson Mandela, Mandela and Frederik Willem de Klerk, De Klerk tried to sway the Zulu king, Goodwill Zwelithini, from his dependence on Buthelezi by offering him a guarantee of special status of the Zulu monarchy after the election. The offer was not immediately successful, but Buthelezi seemed sympathetic to the idea. The foreign mediation team led by former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and former UK Foreign Secretary Peter Carington, 6th Baron Carrington, Peter Carrington were pivotal in reaching a compromise, and convinced the IFP leader to give up his boycott of the election. Buthelezi therefore signed an agreement with De Klerk and Mandela that guaranteed the ceremonial status of the Zulu king and was promised that foreign mediators would examine Inkatha's claims to more autonomy in the Zulu area. It was probably too late though, because Buthelezi was losing support fast, and as a consequence, his party only narrowly won the elections in KwaZulu-Natal. In May 1994, Buthelezi was appointed Minister of Home Affairs (South Africa), Minister of Home Affairs in the first post-apartheid government, a position he retained following the 1999 South African general election, 1999 general election. He was appointed as acting president a number of times during this period. Though his appointment in the Government of National Unity (South Africa), Government of National Unity was a kind of catharsis, King Zwelithini openly lambasted Buthelezi and told many members of the ruling party that he was like Mandela because for 24 years of KwaZulu government, he could not operate freely. Buthelezi countered that by saying that Zwelithini should not interfere in political matters, rather the Zulu monarchy should be modelled along the same lines as the British Royal Family. Because of the IFP's late entry to the election, stickers printed with their candidates' names were added to the ballot papers.
Demise of Government of National UnityPrior to the 2004 South African general election, 2004 general election, then President Thabo Mbeki refused to sign into law Buthelezi's attempt to overhaul the immigration laws. For the first time in South African history, a Cabinet Minister took the President to court in an attempt to secure stricter immigration regulations. Following the 2004 election, Mbeki offered Buthelezi the Deputy Presidency, which he refused, as in exchange the IFP would have to relinquish the Premiership of the IFP-dominated province of KwaZulu-Natal. From 1994, South Africa had been governed by a multi-party Government of National Unity, consisting of the ANC (Tripartite Alliance), the National Party (South Africa), National Party and the IFP. By the time of the 1999 general election, a coalition agreement was not constitutionally required, but the majority ANC again invited the IFP to join it in government. After the 2004 election, with Buthelezi declining the offer of the Deputy Presidency, the IFP left the coalition government and sat in the opposition benches.
Positions*Chief Executive Officer of the Zulu Territorial Authority (9 June 1970 – 31 March 1972). *Chief Executive Councillor of the KwaZulu Government (1 April 1972 – 31 January 1977). *President of Inkatha Freedom Party (21 March 1975 – 25 August 2019). *Chief Minister of the KwaZulu Government (1 February 1977 – 26 April 1994). *Member of the National Assembly of South Africa (since 29 April 1994). *South African Minister of Home Affairs (10 May 1994 – 13 July 2004). *Chairman of South African Black Alliance, that consisted of the Labour Party led by Mr Sonny Leon, the Reform Party led by Mr Yellan Chinsamy, the Dikwakwetla Party of the Free State, and Inyandza led by Mr Enos Mabuza. *Chancellor Emeritus of the University of Zululand. *Member of University of KwaZulu-Natal Foundation and Alumni. *Chairman of Traditional Leaders in the KwaZulu-Natal Legislature.
Awards*King's Cross Award awarded by King Goodwill Zwelithini kaBhekuzulu 1989. *Key to the City of Birmingham awarded by Alabama 1989. *Freedom of Ngwelezana awarded by Ngwelezana 1988. *Unity, Justice and Peace Award by Inkatha Youth Brigade 1988. *Magna Award for Outstanding Leadership awarded by Hong Kong 1988. *Honorary Freedom of the City of Pinetown awarded by City of Pinetown, Kwazulu-Natal 1986. *Honorary LLD Boston University 1986. *Nadaraja Award by Indian Academy of SA 1985. *Man of the Year by Financial Mail 1985. *Newsmaker of the Year by Pretoria Press Club 1985. *Honorary LLD University of Tampa, Tampa University Florida 1985. *Apostle of Peace (Rastriya Pita) by Pandit Satyapal Sharma of India 1983. *George Meany Human Rights Award by The Council of Industrial Organisation of the American Federation of Labour (AFL-CIO) 1982. *French National Order of Merit 1981. *Honorary LLD University of Cape Town 1978. *Citation for Leadership by District of Columbia Council United States of America 1976. *Honorary LLD by Unizul 1976. *Knight Commander of the Star of Africa for Outstanding Leadership by William Tolbert, President Tolbert Liberia 1975. *Newsmaker of the Year by SA Society of Journalists 1973. *Man of the Year by Institute of Management Consultants of SA 1973.
MarriageHe married Irene Audrey Thandekile Mzila on 2 July 1952 who was born in 1929 and died on 25 March 2019 and buried on 29 March 2019, and they had three sons and five daughters: * Princess Phumzile Buthelezi, born 1953. Mother of Prince Nkosinathi Buthelezi (died in 2002 in a car crash) and Prince Bongimpumeleo Khumalo. * Prince Zuzifa Buthelezi, born 1955. Father of two to Princess Nokuthula Buthelezi and Prince Zakhithi Buthelezi. * Princess Mandisi Sibukakonke Buthelezi, died of HIV/AIDS on 5 August 2004, leaving one son, Prince Zamokuhle. * Princess Mabhuku Snikwakonke Buthelezi, born 1957, died 1966. * Princess Lethuxolo Buthelezi, born 1959, died 27 July 2008 in a car crash. She is survived by daughter Princess Latoya Buthelezi, a singer who uses the stage name Toya Delazy.
Bibliography*Ben Temkin, ''Buthelezi: A Biography'', London/Portland, Or: Frank Cass, 2003. *Role of a Foreign Direct Investment in South Africa's Foreign Trade Policy Publication 1999. * Jack Shepherd Smith, ''Buthelezi: The Biography''. 1988. *''South Africa: Anatomy of Black-White Power-Sharing: Collected speeches in Europe''. Emmcon, 1986. *''Usuthu! Cry Peace!'' Co-author Wessel de Kock. 1986. *''The Constitution: an article in Leadership in South Africa''. 1983. *''Der Auftrag des Gatsha Buthelezi Friedliche Befreiung in Südafrika?'' Biography Contributor, 1981. *''South Africa: My Vision of the Future''. London, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1980. *''Power is Ours''. Book 1979. *''Gatsha Buthelezi: Zulu Statesman''. Biography Contributor Ben Temkin, 1976. *''Viewpoint: Transkei Independence''. Book Author Black Community Programmes, 1976. *''Prof ZK Mathews: His Death, The South African Outlook''. Book Lovedale Press, 1975. *Inkatha Book Reality 1975 bi-weekly column syndicated to SA morning newspapers Author, 1974. *KwaZulu Development Black Community Programmes, 1972.
Further reading* Ben Temkin, ''Buthelezi: A Biography'' (London, 1976, 2013).