Yet another democracy activist has gone missing in Swaziland

According to Swazi civil society organisation, Foundation for Socio-Economic Justice (FSEJ), one of their volunteers, Bheki Dlamini, has gone missing. His family say that they haven’t seen him since yesterday, and his mobile phone has been switched off since last evening. Friends and colleagues are now searching for him and a lawyer has been put on the case. FSEJ believe that Bheki has been kidnapped by the police, however, and that he might well be tortured if this is the case, as police had been looking for him in his home area in the Hhohho region at Buhleni last week.

Police kidnappings and the torture of members of the democratic movement in Swaziland is increasingly commonplace – most recent was the alleged beating up and murder of Pudemo member Sipho Jele in police custody. Jele had been arrested for wearing a Pudemo T-shirt.

According to Foundation for Socio-Economic Justice, “Bheki has been arrested this morning [June 16] around 7 a.m at his house that he is renting. His house was searched by this armed police officers and they took him away thereafter“. The Foundation representative further stated on June 17, that “Police have released a statement to all media houses saying that Bheki is responsible for all the bombings between April and June 2010. The statement further says that he will appear before the High Court tommorrow, Friday. He is charged with the Swaziland Terrorism Act. The statement however does not state how this comrade was involved in all the bombings in all the different places which are too wide spread apart which in all these places it has been reported through the media that such attacks occured around midnight“.

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