- Masalanabo Modjadji is only 12 years old
- She is South Africa's only female traditional ruler
- She is said to have mystical rainmaking powers
Most 12-year-old girls are happy-go-lucky pre-teens with not much responsibilities to speak of. For Masalanabo Modjadji, life is a little more complicated than that.
Like other pre-teens, she goes to school and hopes to become a doctor. However, she also carries the title of Queen of the Balobedu, a small ethnic community in South Africa's Limpopo province.
She is South Africa's only female traditional ruler. Even more remarkably, she is said to possess mystical rainmaking powers.
Modjadji assumed her title, which is hereditary, when she was just three months old after the passing of her mother, who was the previous Queen.
She will only be formally crowned when she turns 18. For the moment, she lives with a guardian, Mathole Motshegka, who is also a member of parliament.
Speaking on Modjadji's behalf because she can't make statements until her coronation, Motshegka said: "She wants to be well-prepared because the world is modern and her subjects are going to be educated people, so she wants to be educated so that she matches with the times."
Modjadji is the latest in a long line of women who have ruled her community for over 200 years.
She met President Jacob Zuma after the government officially recognized the Balobedu Queen under South African law.
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