Circular No. 1 causing unrest, says Bennett
NKHUNGWINI - Busine-ssman, Walter Bennett, has called upon Cabinet to immediately revoke Circular No. 1 of 2010 as, he believes, it contributed to the unrest in the country which has manifest itself in the form of strikes and protest actions.
The erstwhile senator said this on Saturday during the Prince Makhosini Awards held at Nkhungwini Umphakatsi under Senator Chief Fipha Dlamini who is a son to the late Prince Makhosini, the country’s first Prime Minister.
Bennett said greed was a major factor in the formulation of the circular and he also said the people who drew it up had a conflict of interests.
The circular issued in September 2010 upgraded the terms and conditions of service for politicians at Cabinet, parliament and Tindvuna tetinkhundla level.
Bennett said the demand for a 4.5 per cent salary increment by teachers and civil servants was genuine if politicians apportioned themselves a lion’s share from the public purse. He wondered why it was difficult for Cabinet to entirely remove the Circular following public outcry.
He decried the silence of the Deputy Prime Minister Themba Masuku on this issue of late when initially he had said it may be reviewed.
"Today there is a culture of greed, conflict of interest and self-centredness in government especially when it comes to money and this is not supposed to happen in a public office. This was not the case during the era of Prince Makhosini as PM. All the complaints stem from Circular No. 1 of 2010 and Swazis have spoken strongly against it as it benefits a few, but Cabinet is reluctant to remove it and we need to ask ourselves the question why," Bennett wondered.
In an interview yesterday afternoon, Government spokesperson, Percy Simelane, said Bennett should approach the relevant government offices for answers on the circular.
"He should contact us for an explanation or clarity regarding Circular No 1 of 2010 than to drive all the way to Nkhungwini from Mbabane to ask about the circular. There are relevant offices he should approach for answers than seeking answers at Nkhungwini because I bet my cow he will never get an answer there. Cabinet are the drivers of the circular so he should contact them for an explanation not Nkhungwini," Simelane said.
Meanwhile, during the event Bennett donated two cows to the Nkhungwini Umphakatsi and he gave the 63 pupils at the awards E10 each.
He also pledged to assist in the rehabilitation of the gravel road leading to the Nkhungwini Umphakatsi.
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