Tuesday, February 14, 2012


Earlier this week the Swazi media were crowing because King Mswati III had been chosen among the top 100 'hottest' (ie sexiest) leaders in the world.

I’d bet they won’t be telling their readers that King Mswati has also made it to the top five worst leaders in Africa in this poll for Forbes.

These are the reasons why he’s down there with the worst of them:

Sub-Saharan Africa’s last absolute monarch presides over a country which has one of the world’s highest HIV prevalence rates: ver 35 percent of adults. Its average life expectancy is the lowest in the world at 33 years; nearly 70 percent of the country’s citizens live on less than $1 a day and 40 percent are unemployed. But for all the suffering of the Swazi people, King Mswati has barely shown concern or interest. He lives lavishly, using his kingdom’s treasury to fund his expensive tastes in German automobiles, first-class leisure trips around the world and women. But his gross mismanagement of his country’s finances is now having dire economic consequences. Swaziland is going through a severe fiscal crisis. The kingdom’s economy is collapsing and pensions have been stopped. In June last year, the King begged for a financial bailout from South Africa, and the country is at a dead end, so badly that it recently announced its withdrawal from the 2013 Africans Nations Cup, citing lack of finances as the principal reason.

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