27 March 2017

Africa: Swaziland Wants Land From S. Africa

Photo: Taurai Maduna/IRIN
King Mswati III - Africa's last absolute monarch (file photo)

Swaziland wants to annexe large parts of South Africa and Mozambique on behalf of the kingdom's autocratic ruler, King Mswati III.

The territory it seeks includes the administrative capital Pretoria.

The Border Determination Special Committee (BDSC) said Friday (24 March 2017) large areas of South Africa belonged to the Swazi nation and had been taken during the time the region was under British rule.

The Observer on Saturday, a newspaper in effect owned by the King, who is sub-Saharan Africa's last absolute ruler, reported the committee, 'revealed that its mandate as directed by the King is to recover all the Swazi land lost during the colonial era, both on the east, west, south and north which goes as far as Pretoria and the Limpopo province.'

The newspaper reported the BDSC told a meeting of editors that the presently landlocked kingdom should stretch to the Indian Ocean and include parts of modern-day Mozambique.

The BDSC is promoting what it calls 'Pan-Swazism', the newspaper reported. This was 'to instil a sense of belonging to all Swazis even outside the current borders of Swaziland'.

It added, 'The Pan-Swazism is of the assertion that it is globally accepted that Swazis have King Mswati III as their king and that this is true even to Swazis that are living in the Republic of South Africa.'

Lutfo Dlamini, a member of the committee, reportedly said the Swazi King was rightly accepted as the leader of all Swazis.

Thabiso Masina, the committee's ex-officio member from the Attorney General's office, said land was lost to the Swazis as a result of concessions to the white settlers around the 1840s. He said no Swazi king had in fact signed the land away.

The Observer reported him saying the Swazis were never defeated in war to warrant for the nation to relinquish any of its land.

The BDSC said there was already a draft agreement between Swaziland and South Africa that they would solve the land dispute amicably.

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