14 May 2013

South Africa: ANC Calls On the Swazi Government to Unban Political Parties and Initiate Dialogue

Photo: Darron Raw
His Majesty, King Mswati III.

press release

The African National Congress (ANC) is deeply concerned about the current political environment in neighbouring Swaziland where a group of unarmed civilians involved in a peaceful demonstration has been violently broken up by security forces.

Having emerged from a brutal past of apartheid that has led to scores of our people being assassinated, assaulted, detained and imprisoned, South Africa is today a world-renowned democratic constitutional model. Were it not for the National Party-led minority regime having been forced by the masses of our people to engage in a dialogue with the African National Congress (ANC) and other liberation movements prior 1994, this would not have been possible.

We therefore, call on the government of Swaziland to work towards the normalisation of the political environment by unbanning opposition political parties, releasing political activists and engaging in a meaningful dialogue with opposition political and trade union leaders to find a collective solution to the socio-economic situation faced by that country.

As seen in South Africa prior democracy, the use of security forces to quell any form of political dissent and failure to address legitimate concerns of citizens, can only lead to the worsening of relations between government and civilians, something that does not augur well for economic stability.

In the interest of maintaining the much-needed stability within the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC), we strongly believe that the situation in Swaziland requires an urgent attention.

It is in the government of Swaziland's interest and its people to resolve the internal conflict in that country - a step that will certainly bolster its political and economic relations with other countries. Having been involved in African Union (AU) missions to work towards ensuring an end to conflicts in North Africa, it is also in South Africa's interest to see a politically stable Swaziland.

Copyright © 2013 African National Congress. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.