The Swaziland Solidarity Network (SSN), together with Swaziland’s Mass Democratic Movement, has lobbied the world to impose “smart sanctions” against king Mswati for a long time now. The sanctions we are advocating for are reasonable restrictions that affect only the king, his family and their cronies.
Had the world listened to our pleas the country would have avoided this outrageous waste of public funds currently being reported in international media. It has been widely reported by a number of South African newspapers that while the country’s citizens are struggling to cope with the effects of a severe drought, the king’s wives went on holiday to Orlando in the United States of America where they spent
over E16 million.
The foreign diplomats are only giving lip service in response to this abuse of scarce resources and insult to the Swazi tax payers, donors and development partners. The SSN wishes to state categorically that the foreign diplomats and international community is primarily to blame for the indiscriminate looting by King Mswati and his family. The silence and failure to act by the international community exacerbates Mswati’s arrogance and makes him disregard toothless “friendly advice” on fiscal discipline. The only language he understands is action. This was evident in the loss of the country’s AGOA status. Since the country lost AGOA its government has been frantically trying to make amends on labour policy.
We therefore urge the world to end these lavish holidays by simply imposing a travel ban on the king, his wives and cronies.
Issued by the Swaziland Solidarity Network [SSN]