13 January 2014

Swaziland: God Is Like King Mswati - Govt Minister

Swaziland's Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs Sibusiso Shongwe said God operates in the same way as King Mswati III - 'in a monarchical way'.

He also said King Mswati III, who rules Swaziland as sub-Saharan Africa's last absolute monarch, was chosen by God.

'It is God's desire to see the people of Swaziland loving their monarchy. This is because God himself operates in a monarchical way,' he told officers during a tour of the correctional facility's criminal mental health centre and the correctional college in Matsapha on Friday (10 January 2014).

'The reason God's eye is closer to the Kingdom of Swaziland is that we are a platform of showing the world how the Almighty God wants the world to be ruled,' he said.

Shongwe was not elected to government; like all ministers in Swaziland he was appointed by the King. The Observer on Saturday, a newspaper in effect owned by the King, reported, 'He said he was a minister because of the King, hence he would like to represent him everywhere he goes.'

Shongwe asked officers from the correctional service to give themselves to God in order to be able to do their work without a problem, the newspaper reported. He said officers must be born again in order to deal with convicts. He said they must always remember that breaking the law is demonic.

It is not only Shongwe who believes King Mswati is chosen by God: the King himself thinks the same.

In August 2013 King Mswati said he had received a vision from God in which he was told to change the name of the undemocratic political system of tinkhundla that governs the kingdom to 'monarchical democracy'.

This was not the first time King Mswati said he had received a vision from God. In 2011, the King said God spoke to him through a TV remote control.

It happened at the Lozitha Palace, near Mbabane. At the time the king told his subjects about his 'miraculous experience'.

The Times of Swaziland, the kingdom's only independent daily newspaper, reported in October 2011, 'His Majesty saw a miracle yesterday when he was preparing a sermon [to preach to a group of evangelical Christians.] The King said a remote control lay at the centre of a coffee table but something mysteriously brought it down.

'He said there was no person or wind that could have brought it down. The King said he realised that God was with him. It was Him who brought the remote control down.'

Reverend Jonas Dlamini, one of the king's preachers, said, 'The king preached to us. He was filled with the light of the Lord when he told us that God had given him a sign when he was getting ready to meet us. He said a TV remote on his table dropped to the floor with no one touching it and that is how he knew God was communicating with him.'

It is common for apologists of King Mswati who controls a kingdom where political parties are banned and seven in ten of his 1.3 million subjects live in abject poverty, while he has 13 palaces and a fortune once estimated by Forbes Magazine to be US$200 million, to say he is chosen by God.

The Swazi Observer newspaper, a stablemate of the Observer on Saturday, in October 2009 told its readers in an article written by the then editor-in-chief Musa Ndlangamandla: King Mswati III is 'ordained by God to lead his people'.

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