King Goodwill Zwelithini called for political formations in the country to work together in order to improve the lives of the people who live in rural areas during the opening of the KwaZulu-Natal legislature on Tuesday, TimesSelect reported.
“This process will require everyone including the upper class, middle class and [lower class] to put in some effort towards building the nation.
“As long as we don’t work together, we will remain a nation that is not united, which will be very difficult for us to achieve great things,” he said.
King Zwelithini said the state has failed in addressing poverty in rural areas and it had been heart-wrenching for him over the years to realise that the rural poor people were almost voiceless.
He said the state leaders were responsible for the issues in rural areas because those areas were not being prioritised.
“What is even more surprising is that even those who proclaim or profess to be democrats become the leading violators of the rights of the rural poor.
“It is my responsibility to encourage the agents of change, irrespective of their proclaimed or cherished ideologies, to fight the war of improving the quality of life of the rural poor.
“It is only then that we can hold our heads high for having achieved the much sought-after meaningful economic development,” he said.
Zwelithini said rural areas had engaged in a continuous struggle for self-reproduction which was one of the challenges that have faced the African continent.
He added that the responsibility of producing a progressive nation is a product of a combination of various efforts aimed at a single objective.
He also called on the government to familiarise itself with the royal household programmes aimed at uplifting rural communities.