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MBABANE – The Swaziland Liberation Movement (SWALIMO) Manzini District Chairperson Brian Sihlongonyane has resigned.

Sihlongonyane confirmed his resignation during an interview with this publication. According to Sihlongonyane, he broke the news of his resignation on his Facebook page, something that got a number of people talking, while some thought the account had been hacked.“The account was not hacked but the post was deliberately written by me,” Sihlongonyane boldly stated. He said he had resigned as district chairperson and also as a member of the newly-established party. According to Sihlongonyane, his resignation was due to not seeing eye-to-eye with some of the members of the leadership.
He said as someone in leadership, he was supposed to make key decisions within the organisation but his ideas were not considered. According to Sihlongonyane, the last push happened when the organisation deliberately disregarded respecting him as a person and the office he held.

This, he said, happened after the president tasked them to form a youth league. He said they formed a task team as per the request but while forming it, two senior officials went ahead of them to form a youth league committee. He said the committee was further launched without their consent or input, yet the process of forming it had to be all inclusive.Sihlongonyane said, the issue resulted in factions within the organisation as others embraced the newly-formed youth league by the two senior officials, while others were against it.


“I was also totally against the appointment in the committee,” said Sihlongonyane.He said while they were fighting the way the current Tinkhundla System of Government operated, their leadership was seemingly acting in a similar fashion, appointing people into positions without any transparency. Sihlongonyane said they did not know where the appointed committee members came from and whether they were competent enough for the position and could execute their duties.

“What happened is that the two senior officials placed their friends into the positions and we took them to task,” he alleged. Sihlongonyane said the two were summoned to a meeting and they failed to honour it and continued to recognise the committee they had put in place. He further said as they tried hard to address the issue in the midst of a gathering to launch the Manzini District, the senior officials frustrated the processes. “They did this because I questioned them on the appointment of the youth league committee,” he added.

Sihlongonyane stated that he reported this to the other leaders that he could not work as he was being frustrated by some people in the leadership. He mentioned that they also engaged the national executive committee (NEC) on the issue but they sided with the officials who also sat in the same structure. He said he felt that he was deliberately being frustrated, adding that the NEC then gave powers to the district secretary. He said he was undermined by the secretary, who had an upper hand with the support from NEC that directly communicated with him, rendering his services redundant. This, he said, he discussed with the Manzini District secretary he was leading and failed to get redress. “I then decided to resign after failing to get redress from all the structures within the organisation.”

Sihlongonyane said he would continue to be part of the struggle. Furthermore, he alleged that the NEC did not want to be questioned, despite that they were in a democratic platform where robust ideas needed to be debated. He appreciated the opportunity to serve under SWALIMO, which he described as an honour, further appreciating members of the organisation who were supportive as he led them.Sihlongonyane said the movement gave him a platform to lead and showcase his leadership skills politically. He stated that he felt it was not where he belonged but in a place where he would be democratic and able to execute his responsibilities transparently. When called for comment on the allegations made by the district chairperson, one of the officials did not respond. A whatsapp message was also sent to him to clarify the issue but he did not respond, although he appeared to be online.

Meanwhile, the Swaziland Liberation Movement (SWALIMO) has suspended the Manzini District Chairperson, Brian Sihlongonyane. His suspension was communicated through an internal memo, which was sent to all leaders and structures. The memo was signed by the National Chairperson, Busie Mayisela. Mayisela was addressing and responding to circulating social media issues on the resignation of Sihlongonyane.She stated that the leadership of the organisation had not received any official resignation from Sihlongonyane as the Manzini District chairperson or member.
Part of the memo read; “The office of the chairperson wishes to clarify that Cde Sihlongonyane was only suspended as the Manzini District Chairperson resulting from valid concerns from the district executive committee he is leading, other internal and external stakeholders, issues that were putting the organisation in disrespute.”

Mayisela noted that notwithstanding that a series of engagements were held and on occasions with Sihlongonyane, with the district leadership, they reached a decision to suspend him. This, she said, was to enable corrective actions and to allow time for resolving the emanating issues amicably.
However, Sihlongonyane stated that he was shocked and frustrated by the memo which was sent following his posts on social media. He said he questioned how he could be suspended yet he had resigned and they told him that he needed to write a formal resignation letter to them. Sihlongonyane said the resignation was written to the leadership structures and submitted on Wednesday night but they had not responded to it.

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