Buthelezi's princely R90k & # 39; gold & # 39; birthday suit

Carved from the finest imported fabric and embroidered with real gold threads, it was certainly a suit made for a prince. That is Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi.

The specially tailored suit, which was reportedly worth the value of R90 000, was donated to the veteran politician by the Durban-based India-born designer Janak Parekh, in recognition of Buthelezi's efforts to promote the "rainbow nation" of South Africa. To build Africa.

Parekh, 61, has in the past offered similar clothing offers to former president Jacob Zuma – who attended the gala dinner in the ICC of Durban – Prince Charles, Martin Luther King yr and King Goodwill Zwelithini.

But he assured that the jacket of the IFP leader, of many of the golden threads that took two months to create, was exclusive to Buthelezi because of the bond they shared.

"My family has the biggest regard for Buthelezi, so we decided to do something special to celebrate his milestone birthday," Parekh said.

Buthelezi became one of his first acquaintances when he landed in Durban in 1989, he said.

"Buthelezi was the first person for whom I designed a suit in 1993."

He said that Buthelezi was also the man who introduced his family to former president Nelson Mandela in 1999.

So is the bond between the two men that when Parekh decided to marry a black woman, Ntokozo, he, against the wishes of his family, consulted Buthelezi.

"He gave me his blessings, now Ntokozo and I have been married for 15 years and we are blessed with a 14-year-old son," he said.

Parekh was reluctant to announce the cost of the outfit because he did not want money to be a problem in honoring the political giant.

He finally admitted: "It is worth more than R90 000, which is the number of years on Earth that Buthelezi celebrates."

While Parekh designed the suit, it was Wahab Master, from the Province of Bihar in India, who was responsible for the customization.

Buthelezi's son, Prince Zuzifa Buthelezi, said: "We are extremely grateful and humbled as a family for the support we received during my father's birthday."

Among those present were former president FW De Klerk and former first ladies Zanele Mbeki and Graça Machel.

Businessman Nicky Oppenheimer, former chairman of the diamond mining group De Beers, was also present.

Parekh said he approached Oppenheimer and jokingly said, "I would do one diamond suite for you, but only if you provide me with diamonds."


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