Swaziland has been reported to the African Court on Human and People’s Rights.
The Swazi Government is accused of failing to uphold and respect rights and freedoms in the kingdom ruled by King Mswati III, sub-Saharan Africa’s last absolute monarch.
The African NGO Forum, a body recognised by the African Union (AU), resolved this week to force the African Union’s Commission on Human Rights to haul Swaziland before the continental court.
Swaziland is accused of violating nine separate articles of the African Charter.
The Times Sunday, an independent newspaper in Swaziland, reports today (15 May 2011) that the African Union’s Commission has been urged to urgently intervene and appeal to the Swazi Government to immediately restore peace and order in the kingdom.
The paper reports, ‘The African Commission has been requested to undertake a fact finding mission in Swaziland to fully investigate the violations of human rights as guaranteed in the African Charter.
‘It must also write to the Swazi Government urging the prime minister to stop police brutality, arbitrary detentions and torture. Swaziland is being urged to amend the Suppression of Terrorism Act and repeal the Sedition and Subversive Activities Act.’
These acts, the African Union was told, were being used to suppress any dissenting voices, silence critics, political party and democracy activists and human rights defenders.
Swaziland’s case of gross human rights violations had been brought by the Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA), which is a member of the African NGO Forum.