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MBABANE – As the Swaziland Liberation Movement (SWALIMO) grapples with an emerging identity crisis, the Ngwane National Liberatory Congress Youth League (NNLC-YL) claims the former ‘stole’ their name.   

NNLC-YL is an established political structure under the Sibongile Mazibuko-led Ngwane National Liberatory Congress. The structure was formed by founding Secretary General Prince Dumisa. In a statement confirmed by NNLC-YL President Bheka Mabuza, the organisation stated that they were named SWALIMO by the then exiled prince. “The leadership of the Youth League of NNLC would like to inform our members and the general public that it is our constitutional right to defend and advance the legacy of our founding leaders with all means possible.


“As we are going to be honouring the role played by our founding leaders on fighting white domination and supremacy during colonisation of the British, it is written down in history of Prince Dumisa that he named the youth league of NNLC (SWALIMO). We would like to advice all political activists to do proper research before implementing an idea and it is by that reason we advice our fellow brothers and sisters to look for another name as they are still organising their legal team. “There is only one ‘SWALIMO’ that exists in the Swazi struggle and it is the Youth League of NNLC,” he said. The NNLC-YL said they were still working on the issue of the newly-established political movement’s name in private, to ensure a positive outcome. Interviewed yesterday, Mabuza said they first raised the issue of the name through the secretariat of the new SWALIMO and they were told that they only discovered after launching it that Prince Dumisa once named the youth league of NNLC ‘SWALIMO’.


“When we questioned them why they kept quiet after discovering that, they then requested that the two parties engage formally to discuss the matter. As the leadership of the Youth League of NNLC, we accepted the idea as they were busy with elections at the time. After the elections a date was set for the meeting which was scheduled to be through Zoom to ensure all leaders of the new SWALIMO were present. It was with great disappointment that the leadership of the new movement decided not to be present at the meeting and informed us very late that they had decided to push the matter to the National Coordination Officer, since they felt the issue was not political but technical and needed legal representation to deal with it,” he said. However, SWALIMO refuted being engaged on the matter and said the NNLC-YL never approached them. They said their legal team had been busy with the copyrights of the name. The communication’s officer of the movement, in a response endorsed by Secretary General Dr Siphetfo Dlamini, said the name was officially registered and protected in law.


“SWALIMO was established and formerly registered in November 2021, after due diligence had been conducted both in Eswatini and in South Africa on the existence of a similar name to an extent that the patent or copyright of the name is currently being protected by our legal team since its establishment. SWALIMO has never received any correspondence disputing its name. Should we in future receive such correspondence, our legal team will be able to address it. “Our major focus at the moment is the liberation of the people and we, therefore, plead with all concerned parties to focus and direct their energies on the common enemy of the people,” said Spokesperson Thandaza Silolo. History reflects that SWALIMO was officially founded in 1985 by Prince Dumisa Dlamini, before that, the group was proscribed by King Sobhuza II.

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