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ACTIVISTS CHALLENGE PM TO THROTTLE THEM

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image Ncongwane (L) and Gumedze at one of the civic organisations’ sessions. (Courtesy Pics)

MBABANE – Trade unionist Vincent Ncongwane and Human Rights Lawyer Sipho Gumedze have challenged Prime Minister Sibusiso Dlamini to throttle them.


 On Wednesday the premier informed Members of Parliament (MPs) that they should strangulate workers union leaders who went to Washington under the pretext of going to salvage AGOA.
Gumedze said a particular trade unionist yesterday, at the summit, was worried about their return back to the country following the Executive leader’s remarks. “They are saying we must not return to Swaziland; however, we have told them that whatever happens upon our return the world will know who was responsible because he said it in public,” Gumedze said.


He further emphasised that they were returning home. “We are coming back home and if he (PM) wants to strangle us, let it be so,” he emphasised. He highlighted that he was inspired when Human Rights Lawyer Thulani Maseko, his spouse Tenele, The Nation Magazine Editor, Bheki Makhubu and his wife Fikile said: “It is well with our souls.”
The human rights activist said they were saying the same. “It is well with our souls.”


Gumedze is in Washington DC where he was attending the US-Africa Leaders Summit which ended yesterday. He is travelling with Ncongwane, Secretary General of the Trade Union Congress of Swaziland (TUCOSWA). He responded to the PM’s statement by stating that they did not report to the premier.


“Anyway we did not have to report to him or government that we were leaving. We report to our constituencies,” Gumedze noted.


He further stated that he would be very concerned if the workers were the ones propagating the allegations that they had sneaked out of the country.
“If they (workers) were the ones making the comments that we sneaked out without their knowledge, then we would be concerned but for this to come from the Minister of Police, when his charges are very active both at the borders and elsewhere in gathering information, it is embarrassing,” he further said.


Furthermore, Gumedze said it seemed as if the throttling was the standard threat from the leadership. He also said he believed that they (government) could do better than that.
The duo participated in a number of events while still attending the two-day summit. The events they attended included two protests over freedom of expression in the country. On the first day of the summit, Gumedze relayed the news that they had secured the services of Hogan and Lovells, an internationally acclaimed law firm that operates in six continents to forward Makhubu and Maseko’s case to the United Nations.


He said the law firm was approached by the International Commission of Jurists and the American Bar Association following appeals by Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR) Swaziland. He further said LHR(S)  had made appeals to international partners on behalf of Maseko and Makhubu.


The duo of Maseko and Makhubu is currently languishing in prison following a two-year sentence without a fine that was imposed by Justice Mpendulo Simelane. “LHR(S) had been mandated to handle all aspects related to things legal, the reason we now have this law firm working on the matter,” Gumedze said.
 He also said the law firm would be filing a formal complaint with the UN.

Comments (7 posted):

Samuel Magagula on 08/08/2014 09:34:38
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Then make Joy feels the PM must be defended against any attack yet those the PM feels should be dealt with violently have no one to defend them. The PM wont get away with all this.
Vandal - Isotja Lomphando on 08/08/2014 10:16:15
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We only hope for the best. The duo should return home with news bearing hope for the voiceless and powerless. Many Swazi's fear to speak because they think they will be tormented like we have seen with our Boys - Makhubu & Maseko. However, you are not alive until you start counting what you will lose after you make a certain action. I also feel the Honourable Prime Minister owes the country an apology, for if the travelling of the Unionist to USA was an illegal act, proper channels should have been followed, not to humiliate the "PEACEFUL" nation by his utterances.
Sikelela on 08/08/2014 11:28:38
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Shocking, sesiyesaba Mr PM but continue do what you do best intimidating people any how instead of cleaning closet as government. go ahead 'bakhame sibone kutsi utasekhama sonkhe yini'
Ntobeko Maseko on 08/08/2014 11:30:43
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I LIKE YOUR SPIRIT MY CDE, OFCOURSE, IT IS WELL WITH OUR SOUL'. THE GOVERNMENT IS CONTINUED TO SHOWED ITS BLINDNESS BY LETING PM TO RELEASE SUCH A BLIND STATEMENT. THEIR SCARING AND SILENTING STRATEGY IS WRONG AND WILL NOT HELP THEM. THE POWER OF PEOPLE WILL LEAD. AMANDLAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA.
colleen matsebula on 08/08/2014 19:02:10
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When elderly men like Prime Minister Sibusiso talk the way he talks we lnow that Swaziland is in trouble. The more he talks the more we know wisdom has left him. At a time like this dialoguevis good . Diatribe is not. The P M should perhaps listen and talk less. This is the problem with this P M. The nation dont need this type of behaviour from him. Yest all he csn do is pound the tyrany drum. This is the politics of old and has no place here. If we continue in this way we shall crash and that crash will not be pretty. Why is he always fighting national interest? These people should speak forvthe interest of the people and country since nobody does. So what is wrong with that.
Mayibongwe Malcom on 09/08/2014 09:01:14
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nangabe kusakhanywana it means we are 400 yrs behind first world. How I wsh the pm umkhaya wami would be seeing the effect of loosing AGOA.
Ntokozo Simelane on 09/08/2014 09:27:57
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Thumbs up comrades.
Asekhame yena lolofuna kukhanywe labanye.Asikho epulazini lakhe phela lana.Angitsi the MPs are afraid of him,uma abagezela ngeke asigezele noma asifutsele sonkhe

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