Monday, May 9, 2011


A documentary film detailing the Swaziland state’s brutality in crushing the 12 April protest will be distributed across the world next month.

Its premiere showing is expected to be at the International Labour Organisation (ILO) Annual Congress in Geneva in June 2011.

The Swaziland National Association of Teachers (SNAT), one of the organisers of the protest, arranged for documentary makers to be in Swaziland to record the actions of the Swazi police and army in terrorising innocent protestors who wanted to demonstrate against the government’s economic policies and call for democratic reform in the kingdom ruled by King Mswati III, sub-Saharan Africa’s last absolute monarch.

Muzi Mhlanga, SNAT Secretary General, told the Swazi News that they had hired several video production houses to record the events and the results were being edited at present.

Police and army fired teargas and water cannon and illegally rounded up people and dumped them in the Swazi wilderness miles from anywhere.

Mhlanga said, ‘We are aware that the international media encounters difficulty covering events such as protest action in the country, hence they end up with inaccurate reports on the events. This then does not give the real picture of what really happens during such events, especially between protestors and the country’s security forces.’

He said they had decided to use the ILO congress as a forum to raise their concerns on the treatment they receive from the police and the correctional services.

He said SNAT had also asked protestors to bring in their complaints against state forces, accompanied by medical doctors’ reports.

‘At the moment I have a few medical reports with me and I am expecting others soon.’

He said they would take the medical reports to attorneys who would then take legal action against the security forces.

The Swaziland state is coming under intense pressure from international bodies about the way it treated a legitimate protest. The Southern African Development Community (SADC) Lawyers’ Association, the International Labour Organisation and Freedom House are some of the groups who have visited Swaziland collecting facts about the protest.

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