China in your hand

Swaziland is the only African country to retain ties with Taiwan. China is now compelling the Swazi regime to sever these ties.

Western countries have not exerted much pressure on Swaziland’s absolute monarchy to rectify its lack of democracy and human rights. Neither has another democracy, the People’s Republic of China, more commonly known as Taiwan. A country with whom Swaziland (renamed Eswatini by King Mswati III in 2018) – as the only country In Africa – has diplomatic ties with. Read more of this post

Finally able to vote

Bheki Dlamini had to flee his native Swaziland because he fought for democracy. Monday he voted for the first time – in Norway, where he lives in exile.

– Casting my vote got me thinking. This is my first ever vote and it is happening in a foreign land. In my homeland, Swaziland, I’ve never voted – simply because we don’t have multiparty elections. The elections in Norway serve as a source of strength in pursuit of freedom and democracy at home, says Swazi political activist, Bheki Dlaimini. Read more of this post

Musa convicted and sent to prison

Former student leader and human rights activist Musa Ngubeni was convicted of contravening Swaziland’s Explosives ACT of 1961 by magistrate Joe Gumedze on Tuesday.

He was whisked away to prison after the conviction and is expected to appear in court on May 21 for sentencing.

Musa Ngubeni was arrested together with student leader Maxwell Dlamini in 2011 and charged with contravening the Explosives Act. They were both arrested during protests against absolute monarch King Mswati III’s government. Read more of this post

Swaziland Youth Congress calls for democracy at National Congress

The biggest youth movement in Swaziland, the Swaziland Youth Congress, called for democracy at its 12th National Congress last weekend. The congress was held in South Africa because of repression in Swaziland against organisations who call for democracy.

The main theme of the first National Congress of the Swaziland Youth Congress (SWAYOCO) since 2013 was democracy and “reawakening youth zeal for liberation.” Read more of this post

Land is power in Swaziland

A new Amnesty International report focuses on forced evictions of poor farmers in Swaziland carried out by local police. Land and forced evictions are central to Swaziland’s undemocratic system, says an activist who grew up in Swaziland’s rural areas.

“Land is life”, a new Amnesty International report on forced evictions in Swaziland called “They don’t see us as people” declares. This is to be taken very literally in the small absolute monarchy, as “the majority of the population rely on substance farming” to feed themselves. Read more of this post

Swaziland: Valg uden demokrati

Swaziland går til valg den 21. september. Ifølge rapporter om det seneste valg i det lille monarki, der ligger klods op af Sydafrika, er det politiske system dog udemokratisk og med til at holde landets enevældige monark ved magten.

Vælgerne i Swaziland skal vælge 59 af de 69 medlemmer af landets underhus. Kong Mswati III vælger de resterende ti, de fleste af senatsmedlemmerne, samt regeringen og premiereministeren. Politiske partier er bandlyst. Read more of this post

Swaziland: Elections without democracy

Swaziland will hold national elections on September 21. But according to reports that examine the country’s last national elections in 2013 and many Swazis, Swaziland’s political system is undemocratic and only serves to keep its absolute monarch in power.

Organised Certainty, a new study published in July by journalist and former associate professor at the University of Swaziland Richard Rooney, concludes that Swaziland’s last national elections in 2013 were “not democratic” Read more of this post

Swaziland’s failed democratisation

The reason for the lack of democracy in the tiny absolute monarchy of Swaziland is an authoritarian reinvention of tradition, and a lack of both internal and external pressure on the regime, writes Swazi activist Bheki Dlamini.

If you are looking for books on political solutions in Swaziland in your local or university library, or in bookstores or on Amazon, you won’t find much to enlighten you. Read more of this post

Swazis demand democracy at Global Week of Action

Thousands of people marched through the streets of Swaziland’s capital Mbabane on Friday to deliver a petition which calls for democracy and socioeconomic justice to the country’s Cabinet.

The march was part of the annual Global Week of Action (GWoA) which, according to the organisers, is the biggest campaign for democracy in Swaziland. It is held during the week of Swaziland’s Independence Day, the 6th of September, and includes marches, seminars and workshops. Read more of this post

Socialist Youth call for democracy in Swaziland now

The International Union of Socialist Youth (IUSY) is calling for governments, regional bodies and multilaterals to pressurize the Swazi regime to introduce multiparty elections in the absolute monarchy of Swaziland.

“We are appealing to democratic governments, regional bodies, and multilateral institutions to raise the issue of Swaziland and hold the authoritarian regime accountable. We call for political and economic pressure on the regime … [and] a peaceful transition to democracy,” the IUSY wrote in a resolution passed at the IUSY World Council held in Rosario, Argentina last week. Read more of this post