Reports of R1.2bn loan to Swaziland ‘not true’

The finance ministry said on Tuesday that a report claiming that a R1.2-billion loan had been granted by the South African government to Swaziland was incorrect.

“While the South African government is in receipt of a loan request from Swaziland, as confirmed last week, no loan has been agreed to or granted to Swaziland,” the finance ministry said in a statement.

The African Development Bank has already refused Swaziland a bailout loan because the country has not met conditions set by the International Monetary Fund, a report said on June 24.

The IMF has said Swaziland must put in place austerity measures, cutting thousands of government jobs and reducing salaries, before loans may be approved.

On Monday, Swaziland opposition forces claimed in a report that the government had agreed on the loan to bail out its cash-strapped government.

Lucky Lukhele, spokesperson for Swaziland Solidarity Network based in Johannesburg, said he had heard from “highly placed sources” in the South African government that it had decided to lend Swaziland the money.

The finance ministry confirmed that technical discussions between South Africa and Swaziland on possible assistance were taking place, and said it would release a statement once a decision had been made.

“[The discussions] take place in the context of the global recession, which resulted in Swaziland losing nearly 60% of its revenue from the Southern African Customs Union (Sacu),” it added.

The Congress of South African Trade Union’s (Cosatu) international secretary Bongani Masuku on Monday also said that the loan had been granted.

Nzimande says no
Meanwhile, South African Communist Party (SACP) general secretary Blade Nzimande said on Tuesday that South Africa must not “bail out” the government of Swaziland.

He was addressing the fifth central committee meeting of Cosatu in Midrand, near Johannesburg.

He said support could be given to the Swaziland government only if it allowed for free and democratic expressions by the people of that country.

“The SACP demands the unbanning of all political parties in Swaziland and the creation of conditions for free and full political participation by all in building a democratic Swaziland.”

Turning to popular uprisings in North Africa and the Middle East, Nzimande added that the SACP condemned “the state-inspired violence directed against protesters and civilians in general in these areas”.

But he noted that the uprisings marked “a decisive resurgence of popular agency in the Arab world, breaking the bonds of fear and repression, and asserting a profound democratic yearning for popular sovereignty”. — I-Net Bridge

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Zeenat Moorad
Zeenat Moorad works from Johannesburg, South Africa. Markets, finance&business. Mostly. Once editor, journalist, columnist-Financial Mail&Business Day,Views all my own, I’d follow me, Currently @Discovery_SA Zeenat Moorad has over 4602 followers on Twitter.
Janice Roberts
Guest Author

Related stories

The shame of 40 000 missing education certificates

Graduates are being left in the lurch by a higher education department that is simply unable to deliver the crucial certificates proving their qualifications - in some cases dating back to 1992

South Africa must revisit and refresh its idea of itself

Covid has propelled citizens into feelings of a new shared identity in which the historical force of ‘whiteness’ is fading into irrelevance

Institutions of higher learning should commemorate their casualties

The bust of Matikweni Nkuna at Tshwane University of Technology is an example of how we should honour those who fought for equal access to education

Seals abort pups in mass die-off

There are a number of factors — a pollutant, virus or bacteria or malnutrition — that may have caused the 12 000 deaths on Namibia’s coast.

Unisa shortlists two candidates for the vice-chancellor job

The outgoing vice-chancellor’s term has been extended to April to allow for a smooth hand-over

Deconstructing South Africa’s construction industry performance

The construction industry has contracted sharply, partly due to Covid, and needs to rebalance its focus if it wants to survive

Subscribers only

The shame of 40 000 missing education certificates

Graduates are being left in the lurch by a higher education department that is simply unable to deliver the crucial certificates proving their qualifications - in some cases dating back to 1992

The living nightmare of environmental activists who protest mine expansion

Last week Fikile Ntshangase was gunned down as activists fight mining company Tendele’s expansions. Community members tell the M&G about the ‘kill lists’ and the dread they live with every day

More top stories

Joe Biden’s debate guests run the only Zimbabwean restaurant in...

A Zimbabwean restaurant feeding people in need formed an unlikely addition to Joe Biden’s election campaign

The high road is in harm reduction

While the restriction of movement curtailed the health services for people who use drugs in some parts of the world, it propelled other countries into finding innovative ways to continue services, a new report reveals

Khaya Sithole: Tsakani Maluleke’s example – and challenge

Shattering the glass ceiling is not enough, the new auditor general must make ‘live’ audits the norm here in SA

State’s wage freeze sparks apoplexy

Public sector unions have cried foul over the government’s plan to freeze wages for three years and have vowed to fight back.

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday