Thursday, March 26, 2009


Swazi dissident Mfomfo Nkhambule has called on Swaziland Prime Minister Barnabas Dlamini to resign or be sacked because he was not appointed legally.

Nkhambule, who recently announced his Inhlava Forum political party would form an opposition government to Dlamini, says Swaziland faces a constitutional crisis.

As I have been reporting in this blog since October 2008 when Dlamini was made Prime Minister by King Mswati III, the appointment was unconstitutional because a prime minister can only be appointed from members of the House of Assembly. Dlamini was not a member at the time of his appointment.

Nkhambule, a former Swaziland Government cabinet minister, writing in his regular weekly column in the Times of Swaziland, said, the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) should intervene and see that Dlamini is removed from office.

Nkhambule has been under attack in recent months for his outspoken views on Swaziland’s undemocratic political system and the role King Mswati, sub-Saharan Africa’s last absolute monarch, plays in it.

In his article, Nkhambule says that if Dlamini stays as prime minister, King Mswati ‘is telling all his subjects to forget about the constitution’.

He goes on, ‘The question that should be troubling some Swazis is: can the king have courage to do what is right? Can he really send Dr Sibusiso [the prime minister] home for the sake of this country and for the restoration of the rule of law? IT IS A COURAGEOUS MAN WHO LIKES UPHOLDING THE TRUTH.’

The questions he poses are, of course, rhetorical since it was King Mswati who appointed Dlamini in the first place. The king knew what he was doing and he knew Dlamini’s reputation as an anti-democrat, who when he was previously prime minister in Swaziland constantly flouted the rule of law.

Appointing Dlamini, King Mswati gave him instructions to wage war against any Swazis who wanted to see the present despotic regime overturned by democracy.

Dlamini has set about his task with energy and a reign of terror was unleashed and pro-democracy advocates have been arrested and harassed and legal public demonstrations banned or attacked.

And that’s just the way King Mswati likes it.

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