After completing a university degree at the University of Fort Hare in 1950, Dr. Buthelezi opted for a legal career which was cut short when he inherited the chieftainship of the large Buthelezi tribe in 1953. He is also Undunankulu Ka Zulu. (Traditional Prime Minister).
In 1970, Dr. Buthelezi was asked by the KwaZulu Assembly to accept the position of Chief Executive Officer of the Zulu Territorial Authority, a position to which he was unanimously elected by members of that body.
In 1972 he became Chief Executive Councillor to the KwaZulu Legislative Assembly and from 1976 – April 1994 was the Chief Minister of KwaZulu. He became the President of the Inkatha Freedom Party when it was founded as Inkatha in 1975.
In 1991, it was revealed that Buthelezi had accepted funds from the Apartheid regime in Pretoria for his political rallies.
When Likud loyalist Zvi Gov-Ari was appointed Israeli ambassador to South Africa in 1989, he strengthened ties with Buthelezi and other Bantustan leaders, widely regarded as puppets of the Apartheid regime.
In March 1994, there were allegations of joint hit-squad operations between Inkatha and the South African government.
In April 1994, Dr. Buthelezi became the Republic of South Africa’s Minister of Home Affairs.
He has been appointed Acting President on several occasions. He is Chairman of the House of Traditional Leaders (KwaZulu Natal).
- DR. MANGOSUTHU BUTHELEZI, MP, PRESIDENT OF THE INKATHA FREEDOM PARTY, Inkatha Freedom Party, accessed 2 March 2012.
- Ben Rathbun, The Point Man, Irving Brown and the Deadly Post-1945 Struggle for Europe and Africa, Minerva Press, 1996, p.344.
- Ben Rathbun, The Point Man, Irving Brown and the Deadly Post-1945 Struggle for Europe and Africa, Minerva Press, 1996, p.349.
- Ben Rathbun, The Point Man, Irving Brown and the Deadly Post-1945 Struggle for Europe and Africa, Minerva Press, 1996, p.354.
- Sasha Polakow-Suransky, The Unspoken Alliance: Israel's Secret Relationship with Apartheid South Africa, Random house, 2010, p.217.