A constitutional monarchy? Hardly

King Mswati III. (Gallo)

King Mswati III. (Gallo)

It is appropriate to group together the Moroccan and Swazi kings, but as authoritarian rulers, writes Keith Gottschalk.

It was astonishing that a Mail & Guardian article (April 26) could claim Morocco's King Mohammed VI as "one of only two constitutional monarchs on the continent together with Swaziland's King Mswati III". Why did the M&G's Page 24 not also read Page 35, in the same issue, on repression in Swaziland?

The Lesotho monarchy is the only constitutional monarchy in Africa.

It is indeed appropriate to group together the Moroccan and Swazi kings, but as authoritarian rulers. For example, the Moroccan king controls the armed forces, police, secret service and foreign policy. This includes refusing independence to the occupied Sahrawi Arab Democratic Repub­lic, which South Africa recog­nises. The Moroccan Parliament's powers are more limited than those of the Cape Colony government of 1884. – Keith Gottschalk, Cape Town

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