As the gateway to the Zulu Kingdom, King Shaka International Airport will host the Zulu Kingdom and dignitaries at a prestigious build up event towards the 200th Anniversary of the formation of the Zulu Nation by King Shaka kaSenzangakhona in 2016. The Zulu Nation was formed by King Shaka kaSenzangakhona is 1816 and will mark 200 years of existence in 2016.
The event, Umgidi WeLembe, forms part of the many celebrations within the ZULU 200 programme launched by King Goodwill Zwelithini kaBhekuzulu in October 2011at KSIA and through this event King Shaka International Airport will become a living monument and legacy celebrating the legendary King Shaka.
The Umgidi WeLembe event, which takes place on 29 September 2012 at the King Shaka International Airport, will boast a colorful programme that will commence with a spirited traditional dance festival featuring various dance groups that include Amabutho, traditional Zulu dancers, Reed Dance Maidens as well as Izimbongi, Zulu Praise Singers. The event will then culminate with performances by Maskandi groups.
The event will commence from about 10:00 to about 15:00 on 29th September 2012 in a few marquees located within the coach staging area at the airport opposite the shaded parking. About 30 buses loads are expected that will bring about 5000 people from the various regions to the event.
These buses will off load the people and be parked in the designated area away from the airport. A traditional march consisting of about 1000 Amabutho (Zulu warriors) will commence from the staging area towards the terminal and then back to the marquee.
To ensure the event does not negatively impact on airport operations, the various security agencies have implemented a robust operations plan that has involved all role players. They include SAPS, Office of the Premier, Royal House, eThekwini Municipality, Department of Arts and Culture and other security agencies. The invited guests can also expect an address by the reigning Zulu King, King Goodwill Zwelithini kaBhekuzulu who has extended a warm invitation to the people of KwaZulu-Natal and other invited dignitaries.
To ensure a cultural vibe is maintained at KSIA there will be about 10 craft markets stalls set up from 24th to 30th September in the area between the terminal and restaurants where people can buy locally made arts and crafts. Ukhozi FM will conduct live radio broadcasts just outside the arrivals terminal and from the marquee venue from 27th to 29th September.
King Shaka International Airport is built on the ILembe District land, an area that is significant to the Zulu culture and heritage as it was named after the founder of the Zulu Nation, King Shaka and as King Shaka International Airport we are honored to carry the name of the legendary and globally respected Zulu King, King Shaka kaSenzangakhona.
Through our involvement in the celebrations leading to the bicentenary of the Zulu Nation KSIA is proud to be the gateway for local and international visitors to experience the celebration of the Zulu nation and the Kingdom.