History of the Kingdom
The Tembe-Thonga people are said to have established their kingdom in south-east Africa. The founding people of the Tembe-Thonga later on migrated from Karanga (Zimbabwe) to the areas surrounding Delegoa Bay around 1554.
They gradually established their authority over the people who lived in Delegoa bay hinterland, south of Mfolozi river. Around 1770, these Tembe-Thonga people were pushed northwards by Zulu people of the Mthethwa tribe. Laer on the "kingdom" divided into two groups. This happened after the death of Silamba. Silamba's oldest son Muhali, who represented the senior branch of the Thonga people, settled west of the Maputo river, north of Usuthu and the junior branch under Mangobe, settled off the Maputa river. This junior branch became to be known as Mabudu or Maputo.
Area of Jurisdiction
It is the area between Delagoa Bay and St Lucia (eManguze, eMseleni, eMbazwane, eHluhluwe, eMtubatuba) until the current Sir MacMahon Award (Kosi Bay) border.
Customary law of succession and the seniority
- Ubukhosi of the Tembe people is hereditary from father to son without any specifications.
- An heir is not appointed but determined by birth (ascribed).
- It is the mother who is appointed to bear an heir and not the son.
- Preference is to be given to a woman who comes from another royal family.