Some women candidates in the election in Swaziland are forced to kneel while they address voters. It is to show respect for men, a local newspaper reported.
The Times of Swaziland said candidates for the kingdom’s House of Assembly and community positions at Mayiwane, ‘have been ordered to kneel when addressing the public’.
It said three women did this while addressing voters at Herefords High School. It published photographs of two of them.
It added, ‘The women had to spend 10 minutes on the spikey grass while addressing the residents.’
The Times, the only independent daily newspaper in the kingdom recently renamed Eswatini by absolute monarch King Mswati III, reported, ‘Under normal circumstances during residents’ meetings held at royal kraals women often kneel as a sign of respect in the presence of men.’
The newspaper reported that in other areas of Swaziland women made their presentations standing.
The final round of elections take place in Swaziland on Friday (21 September 2018). Political parties are banned from taking part. People ae only allowed to select 59 members of the House of Assembly; another 10 are appointed by the King. No members of the Swazi Senate are elected by the people.
In the first round of the election (known as the Primary Election) held on 24 August 44 women compared to 287 men were selected to go forward to the final round of voting (known as the Secondary Election) for the House of Assembly, according to figures released by the Elections and Boundaries Commission.
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