South African police opened an investigation on Tuesday into Nelson Mandela’s grandson on suspicion of illegally exhuming the bodies of three of the ailing anti-apartheid hero’s children, a police spokesman said.
The investigation is the latest twist in an unedifying family feud that has drawn global attention as the 94-year-old Mandela lies in a Pretoria hospital in a critical condition.
Sixteen members of the Mandela family have already won a court order forcing Mandla Mandela – officially chief of the Mandela clan – to return the bodies that he dug up two years ago from the village of Qunu, where Nelson Mandela grew up.
Mandla had the remains moved 20 km (13 miles) to his Eastern Cape village of Mvezo. He has not commented on why he moved the bodies but Mvezo is where Mandela was actually born and where many South Africans believe Mandla wants South Africa’s first black president to be buried.