Friday, November 22, 2019

Swaziland Govt. Minister wants to monitor all foreign ambassadors and score their usefulness

The Swaziland (eSwatini) Government will monitor the United States Ambassador to the kingdom and other senior foreign diplomats to see how well they ‘market’ the kingdom, if Senator Thuli Dladla, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, gets her way.

Dladla wants a ‘scorecard’ to be kept for each ambassador based on how many investors they bring into the kingdom.

The Minister made her remarks in the House of Assembly after several members criticised a speech made by Lisa Peterson, the US Ambassador to Swaziland.

Peterson had criticised the absolute monarch King Mswati III for his lavish spending on luxury Rolls-Royce and BMW cars. He had bought at least 15 Rolls-Royce cars for his wives and the government, which he personally appointed, bought a total of 126 BMW cars and motorbikes, for escort duties.

It had earlier been reported by the online newspaper the Swaziland News that Ambassador Peterson and other ambassadors were now under police surveillance.

Dladla told the House all ambassadors accredited to the kingdom would be called in for a meeting, the Times of eSwatini reported.

The Times added, ‘The minister said there would be score cards for ambassadors based on how many investors they managed to bring into the country, including how well they marketed the kingdom from the various stations.’

Later a US Embassy spokesperson said, Ambassador Peterson’s remarks were guided by principles of the eSwatini Constitution that allowed for freedom of expression. 

See also

Threat to censor U.S. Ambassador to Swaziland after criticism of King’s lavish spending

King of impoverished Swaziland takes delivery of 79 luxury BMW cars worth US$6 million
U.S. Ambassador calls for repeal of decree that makes Swaziland an absolute monarchy

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