Swaziland’s King Mswati III as SADC chair will ‘institutionalise dictatorship’

The prospect of Swaziland’s King Mswati III becoming chairperson of the South African Development Community (SADC) was worrisome as such an appointment would institutionalise dictatorship across the region, the Swaziland Solidarity Network (SSN) said in a statement on Monday.

The SSN, in conjunction with the People’s United Democratic Movement (Pudemo), held a seminar last week to discuss the concerns around such an appointment which it said had the potential to cast a shadow over the region’s future and wellbeing.

It said Mswati had become a “shame” for insisting on hold onto power whilst looting State coffers, this as the majority of Swazi people lived in “abject poverty”.

Lukhele said the last thing the SADC needed was a chairperson who made the region “look like a stronghold of dictators”.

“Judging by the attendance of the seminar which was responded to way beyond our expectations, communicates that both South Africans and Swazis are anxious to deal with the Swazi issue and finally do away with a dictatorship that has been nothing but dead weight to the region,” SSN said in a statement.

“Our strategy of not focusing much on the international community in regard to the seminar on SADC was so that as Swazis and South Africans we shoulder first ponder on this issue as we are literally brothers and sisters, and thereafter call upon the international community when we have shown that as members of the region we are very much willing to confront our issues before we call up the international community for further assistance.”

It said it would engage in campaigns to address the issue of what needs to be done on the issue of “institutionalising dictatorship in the region”. – African News Agency (ANA)

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