16 September 2018

Communist Party of Swaziland supports national protest action against Mswati autocracy as declared by Trade Union Congress of Swaziland

The Trade Union Congress of Swaziland (TUCOSWA) has declared a national protest action to begin on Tuesday 18 September 2018. From Tuesday TUCOSWA will lead mass demonstrations throughout Swaziland, focused mainly on four major cities and towns across the four regions: Mbabane, Manzini, Nhlangano and Siteki. From Tuesday it will effectively be a national shutdown as all workers will be on the streets all over Swaziland, protesting against the Mswati autocracy.

The workers’ federation will be raising a number of people’s demands with the Mswati regime which will be communicated soon. The most recent TUCOSWA protest action was held on 29 June 2018. In that action, the federation called for a cost of living adjustment, setting of the national minimum wage at E3,500.00 (US$ 234.27), increase in elderly grants to E1,500.00 (US$100.40), legalisation of solidarity strikes, increase in health and education funding, and an end to arbitrary evictions especially on the working class and poor, among many other demands. The absolute monarch responded to these demands by unleashing the royal police on workers who had been marching peacefully on the streets of Mbabane.

Demonstrations led by TUCOSWA on 29 June 2018 in Mbabane City 

The Communist Party of Swaziland fully supports TUCOSWA and all the workers of our country in these struggles. Since the regime is desperate to get all workers to participate in the fake elections which will elect a puppet parliament for Mswati, scheduled for 21 September 201, we can only expect increased repression during the demonstrations.

On 24 August 2018 Mswati, sub-Saharan Africa’s last absolute monarch, displayed his heightened desperation to protect his fake elections by all means necessary. He ordered his police to fire live bullets against teachers who had been peacefully protesting on the streets of Manzini. It was, among other acts, the bravery of a teacher who jumped onto one gun-wielding policeman that prevented what could have been a massacre. That gun-wielding police has since been rewarded with a promotion for his cruel efforts, while the teacher who stopped the police’s criminality was arrested and slapped with trumped up charges.

On 29 June 2018 TOCSWA led a peaceful march on the streets of Mbabane in Swaziland. They were met with brutality form the royal police.

The Communist Party of Swaziland calls upon all learners in primary schools, high schools and tertiary institutions to join these protests. Unemployed people also have the duty to form part of the action and fight for their future. The sham tinkhundla elections must be boycotted and disrupted. This will be a major contribution towards the democratisation of the country.

Issued by the Communist Party of Swaziland

Kenneth Kunene
General Secretary
+27 72 594 3971

Njabulo Dlamini
International Organiser
Mobile: +2687 603 9844

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