The late Xhosa king Zwelonke Sigcawu once chastised President Cyril Ramaphosa for travelling by helicopter to visit his Nqadu palace instead of using a car. Had Ramaphosa travelled by car, Sigcawu argued, the president would have witnessed the deplorable state of roads that led to his palace, situated in Gatyana (Willowvale) in the former Transkei, now part of the Eastern Cape.

In January 2018, Ramaphosa had led a delegation of the ANC’s top six leaders to pay a courtesy visit to the king after a bruising elective conference in December 2017 in Johannesburg, where Ramaphosa emerged victorious over his leadership rival, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma...

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