Mswati III, the current King of Swaziland and head of the Swazi Royal Family has married a 19-year-old girl as his 14th wife.
According to Buzz SA, King Mswati’s new bride, 19-years-old Siphelele Mashwama, is the daughter of Jabulile Mashwama, a Swaziland Cabinet Minister.
Siphelele Mashwama, who graduated from Swaziland’s Waterford Kamhlaba World University College, is currently in the United States with King Mswati, who is attending the United Nations general assembly.
However, it’s a common tradition in Swaziland for the king to choose a wife every year. Last year, the King picked a new bride during the well-known Reed Dance ceremony, also known as Umhlanga.
The Reed Dance ceremony is an annual Swazi and Zulu tradition held in August or September.
In Swaziland, tens of thousands of unmarried and childless Swazi girls and women travel to Ludzidzini to participate in the eight-day event and would-be brides are publicly checked to ascertain that their virginity was still intact.