Saturday, June 4, 2011


An interesting insight into what people in Swaziland think about state-controlled Swazi TV.

Times of Swaziland

3 June 2011


Marchers mock Swazi TV crew

MBABANE – Journalists from Swazi TV were embarrassed by marchers on Wednesday morning (1 June 2011) when they were laughed at for covering the march [involving teachers and workers calling for the freezing of assets held by Swaziland’s elites abroad], ‘although they would not screen the event in their news bulletin’.

This was the view of the hundreds of marchers who mocked the news crew.

This was just before the representative of the American Embassy, Craig Pike, responded to the petition delivered by SNAT.

Pike had to wait for about three minutes while SNAT leadership and marshals tried to calm the situation.

SNAT President Sibongile Mazibuko appealed to the membership to give the government owned television station the benefit of doubt.

However, the marchers insisted that the crew members should be excused, and that only the SABC [South Africa Broadcasting Corporation] be allowed to cover the event.

It was only after one member of the South African news crew stated that they would also leave if their counterparts were not allowed to cover the march that the marchers calmed down.

Notably, while waiting for government officials at the ministry of Finance, some marchers chanted slogans to the effect that government media houses should be closed down.

"Viva SABC viva – viva e-TV viva, phansi ngemsakato wahulumede, phansi," one marcher shouted on top of his voice. 

Interestingly, the bulletin on Wednesday night did cover the march, although it was not the main story of the day.

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