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MBABANE – Two male aspiring senators found themselves out of the race without their knowledge.

The two sat through the election of their competitors without knowing that some of the legislators had already been informed that the duo should not be elected because when their names were taken to the police station for vetting, it turned out that their past was found wanting.


Other aspiring senators had also gotten wind that some of their competitors had been ‘disqualified’, with some even texting journalists to ask if their disqualification had been announced in the House of Assembly.
Vetting is the process of performing a background check on someone before offering them employment, conferring an award, or doing fact checking prior to making any decision.

It is normally carried out by the police. 


However, the only candidates who were publicly announced inside the House that they had been disqualified, were those who had lost out during the Primary and Secondary Elections race, who included former Lobamba Member of Parliament (MP) Michael Masilela.

To save face, some of the MPs continued to elect the candidates who had not passed the vetting stage, although it was clear from the counting of the votes that they did not stand a chance to win.
The candidates, though known to this publication will not be named for ethical reasons and the fact that they have not been charged by the police for any wrongdoing.

One of the candidates had been pitted as a front-runner during hushed conversations which were held outside the Parliament building.


However, when the MPs held their caucus, which lasted for about five hours on Tuesday, they were informed that there were also concerns from the higher authorities about the calibre of some of the candidates who had been nominated. 

Needless to say, the candidates who allegedly did not perform too well during the vetting process, did not make it into the top five of the eventual winners.
“One cannot say much on the issue, but those who had nominated the candidates were also informed of the latest developments, and perhaps they informed their people before the process started, but it had been made clear that some of the people should be considered to be out of the race,” said one of the MPs.


Meanwhile, Chief Police Information and Communications Officer (PICO)  Superintendent Phindile Vilakati, said as the police they could not divulge any information on the vetting of individuals.

“The process that is undertaken is highly confidential and therefore, for security reasons, one cannot state what happens,” said Vilakati.
She said after conducting the required scrutiny, their findings were forwarded to the relevant office which the candidate was standing for.      

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