PRESS STATEMENT 07 SEPTEMEBR 2012 – FORWARD TO A PEOPLE’S GOVERNMENT
The Swaziland Diaspora Platform would like to congratulate the people of Swaziland as led by the Swaziland United Democratic Front and Swaziland Democracy Campaign in clearly defining what they want for themselves and future generations as captured in the People's Charter.
As a blueprint of a future that can only be achieved through a people-centric democratic system, the People's Charter is both an important and urgent milestone, and the Swaziland Diaspora Platform reiterates its support of the pro-democracy movement.
It could not have come at a better time as the World Economic Forum released it's 2012 - 2013 Global Competitiveness Report on 6th September 2012 as well; which placed Swaziland at 136th out of 144 countries, eight places from the bottom. The report paints a grim picture of Swaziland, the picture is one of a country in regression that will soon be classified as a failed state if the people do not take ownership. The People's Charter is a clear declaration of what the people of Swaziland want, how they will achieve it and importantly, that they will own it.
Although categorised as a Middle-Income economy, the inequality is so skewed that 63% of Swazis are categorised as poor, an anomaly created by poor government policies. The current government policies ensure that 10% of the population own 60% of the economy whilst neglecting delivery on health and education. Swaziland's competitiveness on higher education is ranked at 125th out of 144 countries and 135th out of 144 countries for health and primary education.
Only a People's Government can change things around and ensure that the middle-income classification of Swaziland reflects equal distribution of resources to all 1.2 million Swazis.
We would like to challenge all Swazis to stand up and fight for democracy in Swaziland. People of the world have shown that they are willing to support us not just in words but in action too. The demonstrations held in Togo, Senegal, Congo, Germany, South Africa and the UK in solidarity with the Swazi struggle show that our voices are being heard all over the world and it does not do our cause any good if we keep bickering and fighting over turfs while our people are dying in this silent genocide.
As the Diaspora community we have left our comforts, we no longer lament about the situation back at home or at worse Facebook our frustrations, instead we have taken the road less travelled and are acting for change. We continue to see ourselves as a neutral platform that will relentlessly fight for unity amongst all those fighting for democracy in Swaziland.
However, we are under no illusion that such unity shall be built mechanically, instead it shall be a product of our collective will to fight together in the trenches. We therefore would like to welcome the People's Charter as a new dawn, a uniting glue that must rally all society for democratic change.
The SDP remains committed to working with all forces for change in Swaziland regardless of race, sex, religious and political affiliations. As the SDP we shall wave high the flag of the People's Charter, champion it wherever we go as well as defend it as it now a pact through which we shall hold any future government accountable. No more shall we sign a blank cheque to any government without concrete deliverables.
Forward to a People's Charter!!!
Forward to the voices of the oppressed!!!
Forward to the voices of the rural women and ex miners!!!
Forward to the implementation of the concerns of the disabled and minority groups!!!
A new Swaziland lurks in the horizon.
The Swaziland Diaspora Platform