MANZINI: Police fired teargas and live ammunition at Thabani Nkomonye’s memorial in Manzini, elderly people and Thabani's family members were among those who were injured and rushed to hospital.
Speaking to this Swaziland News in the midst of the chaos, Mduduzi 'Magawugawu' Simelane who was sitting next to Thabani's mother when the police fired the teargas said what happened today where he saw people who are in mourning being persecuted by the police created another person in him adding that those who issued the order wanted the country to burn as they will not keep quiet.
"Firstly, I would like to send condolences to Thabani's mother, what happened today is very painful. I saw an asthmatic child who is related to Thabani being rushed to hospital after inhaling the teargas. This means the Nkomonye family family who were in pain almost lost another child at the hands of the police. But I would like to warn those who issued the order that they literally burning the country because we will not keep quiet, what I saw today crated another person in me but I still believe in peace" he said.
The Siphofaneni MP said police were very strategic to cause the chaos after the MC indicated that he, together with Hosea MP Bacede Mabuza will speak during the memorial.
"They were very strategic to cause the chaos, students were sitting from a distance observing COVID-19 regulations and following the proceedings but the police confronted them just to cause chaos. The police knew that by so doing they will prevent us from addressing the participants during the memorial service after learning that we will deliver speeches that will influence the people. But then, we won't keep quiet, our mouths are the guns and the ammunition is the truth we are carrying about the injustices in this country. We can't have people who are mourning their loved one treated in this manner, this means there is no freedom in this country" said the MP.
A questionnaire was sent to Superintendent Phindile Vilakati, the Police Spokesperson, however, he had not responded at the time of compiling this report.
Reached for comments, Colani Maseko, the President of the Swaziland National Union of Students(SNUS) urged the youth to re-group and demand democracy alongside the ongoing justice for Thabani protests.
“Police fired teargas even at elderly people here at the memorial service and now it’s high time we demand not only justice for Thabani but democracy.The youth must re-group and we continue with the struggle”,he said.
Police fires teargas at Thabani Nkomonye's memorial