STRIKE ACTION LEGITIMATE MR DPM, IT’S YOUR GOVERNMENT THAT IS NOT!
The Swaziland Diaspora Platform has read with utter dismay reports that the Deputy Prime Minister Themba Masuku has called the ongoing public service strike illegal and therefore advised that it be called off. The Swaziland Diaspora Platform would like to reiterate its unconditional support and solidarity with the striking civil servants of Swaziland.
The strike started by the Swaziland National Association of Teachers over two weeks ago and recently joined by the National Public Service and Allied Workers Union and the Swaziland Democratic Nurses Union illustrates a people at odds with their government, a people who want a democratic, representative, accountable and responsive government. This strike action is a declaration that Swaziland is run by an illegitimate system, and the people want change.
The government of Swaziland should see this as a vote of no confidence. Workers who were unhappy with how government was managed and the policies adopted toppled governments in Romania, Greece and Egypt, just to count a few. A government that fails to manage its resources and plan effectively is a failed government and ought to step down.
The lack of empathy in the manner that government is handling the stand-off with civil service unions is indicative of the attitude government has to the Swazi people in general. On Wednesday July 11, whilst government employees protested for a 4.5% salary increment, the Prime Minister arrogantly reaffirmed his statement publicly that there will be no salary increment for civil servants for three years.
Government is purposefully not prioritizing the delivery of quality health and education to the people of Swaziland and instead focusing on projects that will benefit cronies of the Monarch. And to ensure that the Monarch continues to use Swaziland as its personal piggy bank and farmstead, the government sanctions Swaziland becoming a police state where the few remaining civil liberties are being infringed upon on a daily basis.
To facilitate Swaziland becoming a police state, Prime Minister Barnabas Dlamini is able to allocate R22million to give to the Royal Swaziland Police for the hiring of more police, for purchasing of armory, and the promotion of some police officers to higher ranks. This is to ensure that police act as violently as they have been these past few weeks as civil servants embark on legal strikes.
The recent reappointment of a very unpopular Chief Justice, who is known to overlook the Constitution in passing judgements that favour the Monarch and its government, ensures that the judicial machinery is also instrumental in suppressing the rights of Swazis and further entrenches a very illegitimate government.
The Swaziland Diaspora Platform joins the calls for a democratic Swaziland to ensure that Swaziland is governed by people who care for all Swazis all of the time…Waya Waya!!!
The Swaziland Diaspora Platform
Spokesperson – Ms Ntombenhle Khathwane