MBABANE:Eugene Dube, the highly regarded Swati Newsweek editor has warned the United Nations against funding the collapsing King Mswati’s regime, he calls for an interim government of national unity that should pave way for democratic reforms.
Speaking to this Swaziland News on Wednesday, the editor who fled to neighboring South Africa after sustaining injuries in the midst of police raiding for writing critical articles about King Mswati said the United Nation should know that the current government does not embrace transparency and accountability hence the funding will benefit only the royal family and few individuals not the over 700 000 citizens living below the poverty line.
This comes after the King through Prime Minister Ambrose Dlamini appealed to the UN for assistance saying the country was struggling financially with only three months reserves in its coffers. The PM told the United Nations that a large share of the country’s budget was used to fight COVID-19. However this was disputed by Wandile Dludlu, the Secretary General of the People’s United Democratic Movement (PUDEMO) during an interview with this publication who said nothing tangible has been done by the government since the pandemic started.
“COVID - 19 came at a time when the kingdom is continuing with the fight against HIV, malaria and TB. These have caused a big strain on our national budget. As we address the issue of COVID 19, the country has been following all the guidelines of the World Health Organisation” the PM said on behalf of the King.
But the Swati Newsweek editor said any assistance directed to the King’s undemocratic government will undermine the efforts of the citizens to gain freedom from the oppressive regime.
“What is needed now is an interim government of national unity that will pave way for democratic reforms. The United Nations should know that this government does not embrace accountability of resources hence any funding will benefit the King and the royal family not the people” said the editor.
On Tuesday, the respected editor wrote an article suggesting that the country was in need of resources like funding, but he maintained that such assistance should benefit the people not few individuals.
“We need the money as a country,but such money must help the hungry 1, 3 million Swazis.
It must not end up in pockets of the Swazi Royal family members. There will be no peace if one family loots public funds” he said.
King Mswati III