The Swaziland High Court ruled parts of Suppression of Terrorism and the Sedition and Subversive Activities Acts unconstitutional, paving the way, prodemocracy activists hoped, for some form of democracy to be introduced to the kingdom, ruled by King Mswati III, sub-Saharan Africa’s last absolute monarch. The un-banning of political parties was high on their agenda.
But it was not to be. At least not yet. The Swazi State appealed the decision and we must now await a Supreme Court ruling at a date yet to be set.
This was one of the highlights of the third quarter of 2016 and is featured in a compilation of posts to the Swazi Media Commentary website in the months July to September 2016. It is available free-of-charge at Scribd.
King Mswati became Chair of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) amid some controversy, since he rules the only state in the community that bans political parties.
The Swazi Police once again were in the spotlight for their heavy-handed manner with striking plantation workers. Investigations into allegations of police torture are underway.
The King’s excessive spending was highlighted once again. As donor agencies across the world struggled to find funding to feed the one-third of the Swazi population in need of food aid, the King prepared to take delivery of a private jet aircraft, costing an estimated US$14 million.
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