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I am keenly and closely following the current unrest and clash of egos playing itself out between the incumbent government and students in most tertiary institutions around the country. I am no prophet of doom but something is not right.

Signs of long-held in check anger are manifesting themselves out and are intensely churning themselves out from beneath the surface.
There seems to be pent-up anger, barely held in check, directed at the disdainful and lackadaisical manner our government treats and seems to put priority on matters of national importance.

For too long our government has held the tiger by the tail and it is now turning ferociously and biting.
For too long the docile nature of Swazis has been taken advantage of by unscrupulous leaders in past and present governments. Inasmuch as, biblically, God warns us to respect governing authorities, it is a universally known fact of life that respect is earned.

Sadly this is a fact our government chooses to ignore and refuses or arrogantly brushes aside any advice, let alone constructive criticism coming from concerned citizens. The exploding issue of student unrest is, in my opinion, a culmination of long-held frustrations at the lackadaisical and arrogant manner our government handles priorities.

Let us learn from past history around the world. Campuses are breeding grounds for radicalism.
Let us not play around with emotions of our youth. During our time we barely knew or were allowed to exercise our basic and fundamental human rights; today the situation has vastly changed.

Students know their rights and will demand them. More often than not they use whatever means at their disposal to achieve the end. Sadly violence is invariably the end result of confrontational stances. By using the dialogue of force and confrontations to have its own way, government has alienated itself from its people. We also have the looming clash over teacher salary negotiations.

Arrogance breeds discontent; discontent breeds confrontation and the end result is too fearful to contemplate. I fervently pray for our government to wake up from its slumber and I implore it to heed the ominous signs gathering in the horizon before it is too late. Closing the stable door long after the horse has bolted is folly.

Alex Lucky Nxumalo

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