Saturday, June 20, 2009


As hundreds of thousands of people take to the street in Iran to protest at the recent stolen election, one man was quick to offer his support to the contested president.

Step forward Mswati III, the king of Swaziland.

King Mswati sent his congratulations to Iran President Mahmound Ahmadinejad, rejoicing in ‘this happy occasion’.

According to the Swazi Observer, the newspaper in effect owned by King Mswati, sub-Saharan Africa’s last absolute monarch, King Mswati told Ahmadinejad, ‘I would like to express my firm belief that cordial relations which have always existed between our two countries will continue to be enhanced and strengthened in the years to come for the mutual benefit of our nations and peoples.’

Of course, no one is surprised that King Mswati was quick to offer his congratulations to someone who stole an election. For a long time he has been buddying up to Robert Mugabe, the despot who stole the elections in Zimbabwe last year and recently he was feted by Mugabe.

King Mswati also knows a thing or two about dodgy elections. He held his own in Swaziland last year but banned political parties from taking part. The European Union refused to send a team to ‘monitor’ the elections because it couldn’t see the point since the elections were obviously not free.

The Commonwealth Expert Team did send a delegation and called for a multi-party system to be introduced to save Swaziland.

The Pan-African Parliament also criticised the Swazi elections as unfair because parties were banned.

So Mswati knows who his friends are. He is lucky; the only difference really between Swaziland and Iran is that the people of Iran have the courage to fight back.

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