Do Swazis want democracy?

bheki_New Afrobarometer-report shows that Africans still cautiously embrace democracy. In the small absolute monarchy of Swaziland, support for democracy is low but rising. In many other countries it is falling.

‘Do Africans still want democracy,’ independent research network Afrobarometer asks Africans in a new report? The answer seems to be a cautious and qualified ‘yes’. In Swaziland, a small absolute monarchy where parties are banned and the king appoints the government and controls everything from the economy to the judiciary, numbers are very low but rising. Read more of this post

Swaziland: Antiterrorlov kendt forfatningsstridig

high-courtFredag blev dele af Swazilands antiterrorlov, som Amnesty International kalder ”undertrykkende,” kendt forfatningsstridig i landsretten i Mbabane. En ung demokratiforkæmper, der selv har mærket effekterne af loven, tror dog ikke, at dommen vil ændre meget.

I 2014 blev syv medlemmer af People’s United Democratic Movement (PUDEMO) arresteret, og anklaget for terrorisme i henhold til Swazilands antiterrorlov. De havde båret en t-shirt, med PUDEMOs logo i det lille enevældige monarki. Read more of this post

Powerless People’s Parliament

Mswati SibayaThe Sibaya ”People’s Parliament,” where Swaziland’s absolute monarch summons his subjects to the royal cattle byre to discuss pressing issues, was held over the last week.  Many issues were raised, but in previous years little has happened as a result of it.

“Raise grants for the elderly”. “Stop repossessing our land in Vuvulane”. “My kids go to bed hungry”.  “Ordinary people don’t have access to radio”. “Minimum wage should by 3000 emalangeni”. “We have no land, even though the constitution says every Swazi should have access to it”. “Cattle roam the streets and are causing accidents”. “The cabinet should be fired”. “Inequality causes division”. Read more of this post

Monarchy a luxury that Swaziland cannot afford

Bheki blog

Photo: Karitte Lind Bejer

Swaziland’s big-spending absolute monarch King Mswati III is spending millions of dollars on a new personal jet and other luxuries, while many of his poor citizens rely on food aid to survive.

“The monarchy is a luxury that Swazi’s cannot afford. It is like a blood-sucking parasite that has sucked its host dry”, says Swazi activist Bheki Dlamini.

He is doing a Masters in Public Administration, is President of the banned Swaziland Youth Congress and spent nearly 4 years in a small filthy cell Read more of this post

International youth organization calls for democracy in Swaziland

IUSY bhekiThe International Union of Socialist Youth (IUSY) passed a resolution at its 31st world congress that called for a process that would unban political parties, remove repressive legislation and introduce multi-party democracy in Swaziland.

The resolution, passed on Saturday, also called for an end to the systematic harassment, intimidation and incarceration of political activists and the unconditional release of political prisoners and return of exiles, as well as for the isolation of Swaziland until these demands are met. Read more of this post

Swaziland documentary nominated for international award

Bheki Dlamini SKB“Swaziland – Africa’s last monarchy”, a documentary film about activist Bheki Dlamini by award-winning Danish investigative journalist Tom Heinemann, has been nominated in the short film category at the Al-Jazeera International Film Festival.

The main character in the documentary, young activist Bheki Dlamini, says that he is pleased with the nomination as well as with the publicity that the film has given the struggle for democracy and social justice in his homeland of Swaziland. Read more of this post

Dansk dokumentarfilm nomineret til international filmpris

Bheki Dlamini SKBDen prisbelønnede danske journalist og dokumentarist Tom Heinemanns film, ”Swaziland – det sidste enevælde” om aktivisten Bheki Dlamini, er blevet nomineret til prisen som bedste kortfilm på Al-Jazeera International Film Festival, sammen med film fra blandt andet USA, Kina, Indien og Kenya.

”Swaziland – det sidste enevælde” blev vist på DR2 i august, som en del af serien ”De ukuelige”. Serien, som Tom Heinemann har lavet sammen med norske Erling Borgen, portrætterer menneskerettighedsforkæmpere fra forskellige dele af verden. Read more of this post