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EXPOSED:PUDEMO senior members run to petition Mswati’s Finance Minister Neal Rijikernberg linked to a plot to assassinate President Mlungisi Makhanya.

Tuesday, 18th April, 2023

MBABANE:Finance Minister Neal Rijikernberg who allegedly hired mercenaries on behalf of Mswati has been,once again,linked to another assassination plot following the death of human rights lawyer Thulani Maseko, this time the target is the President of the People’s United Democratic Movement (PUDEMO) Mlungisi Makhanya.

As a result, senior members of the political organization petitioned the Minister on Tuesday,notifying him that he will be held personally accountable for all the violations of human rights in the Kingdom of eSwatini.

Even though the issue of the assassination was not specifically included in the petition, the action comes after weeks of an intensive investigation following the leak of electronic evidence where one Brian Nyembe was speaking to alleged South African killers(Tinkabi) hired to assassinate the PUDEMO President.

Nyembe, an employee of Pigg’s Peak plantation was arrested a few weeks ago for allegedly housing members of the pro-democracy Swaziland International Solidarity Forces (SISF) and subsequently released allegedly, with conditions that he will assist the State in assassinating Makhanya.

A questionnaire was sent to Superintendent Phindile Vilakati, the police Spokesperson, however, she had not responded at the time of compiling this report.

It has been disclosed that after being released from jail, Brain Nyembe was given twenty thousand Rands (R20,000.00) by State agents linked to the Finance Minister, and he sent the money to his son Mbongseni Nyembe who was a member of the Swaziland International Solidarity Forces.

It has been uncovered that Mbongseni and one ‘Putin’ Vilakati (both being members of the Solidarity Forces) fled after the killing of Mlandvo Khumalo by Mswati’s soldiers and the subsequent arrest of other members of the Underground Forces. 

Mbongseni fled to KwaZulu Natal(KZN),while ‘Putin’ was hiding in Mpumalanga province in the Republic of South Africa.

An independent investigation conducted by this Swaziland News further uncovered that soon thereafter, Senior Superintendent Clement Sihlongonyane secretly released Brian Nyembe from jail and convinced him to continue being a member of the Underground Forces while monitoring Makhanya with an intention yo assassinate him.

It is alleged that the top cop further informed the two ‘on-the-run’ members of the Solidarity Forces that they won’t be arrested if they agreed to participate in the killing of Makhanya.

According to intelligence information in our possession, the assassination of Makhanya by members of the Underground Forces would then be used to justify and spread State propaganda information suggesting that even Thulani Maseko was killed by Solidarity Forces as per a narrative pushed by the eSwatini government.

But one of the alleged killers(Inkabi) based in KwaZulu Natal (KZN), decided to leak the electronic conversation to this investigative journalist, saying the ‘project’ was not implementable because the target was a high profile person fighting for the rights of the people in Kingdom of eSwatini.

Reached for comments, Brian Nyembe denied that he was involved in the plot to assassinate Makhanya but confirmed that a few weeks ago, his son who was a member of the Solidarity Forces was in KwaZulu Natal.

"It's true that I was arrested and later released by the police.But my release was not on the condition that I facilitate the assassination of Mlungisi Makhanya. The police discovered that I did nothing except ton provide accommodation to the Solidarity Forces when they conducted their operations," he said.

When asked about his son Mbongeni Nyembe who went to KwaZulu Natal to engage killers(Tinkabi) and hand over the R20,000.00 that was referred to as ‘airtime’ money, Brian Nyembe confirmed that his son was in KZN.

“I can confirm that my son Mbongseni is in KZN, but these days I am struggling to get hold of him,” he said.

Worth-nothing, Brian Nyembe who was released by the police sent an audio message to the alleged killers(Tinkabi),other State agents facilitating the assassination and asked them to try and locate Mbongseni as the money was with him.

In the audio and/or electronic evidence, Brian Nyembe clarified that the ‘project’ was not in any way funded by King Mswati’ but by a businessman,Nyembe had earlier denied any involvement or links with a businessman over the assassination plot.

But a separate investigation by this Swaziland News later confirmed that the businessman was allegedly Neal Rijikernberg, who had previously assisted King Mswati, an absolute Monarch,with the hiring of mercenaries.

Brian Nyembe allegedly sent the audio after the State agents and or killers (Tinkabi) questioned him about payments as Mbongseni was not available.

"Ngikhashane langikhona-khona, nemali ngayitfumela ku-Mbongseni yefika futsi washo naye kutsi ifikile. Angisati kutsi yini lekufuneka ngiyente mine uyabona, because mine angikabaleki ekugcineni kutsi kumbe sengiyabaleka kutsi sosebentile wena mine sengiyabaleka, angikaze ngabaleka.I thought you were busy there working,yet you are doing nothing; you are playing hide and seek.And let me correct you: lentfo lena akusiyo kutsi kumbe yeNkhosi; ngatsi mine nguSomabhizimisi longuyena acele kutsi sente lomsebenti lona; hhayi kutsi kwaMswati. Akusiko kwaMswati uyabo, nguSomabhizimisi," said Brian Nyembe in the audio who was allegedly turned into a State agent to kill the PUDEMO President.

But when this investigative journalist questioned Brian Nyembe further about the audio he allegedly sent to the killers (Tinkabi), he denied it and went on to request that it must be sent to him so he can comment after listening to the evidence.

But soon after the audio was sent to him, Nyembe disappeared without providing further comments.

Reached for comments, Mlungisi Makhanya, the President of the People’s United Democratic Movement (PUDEMO), confirmed the plot to assassinate him and that Neal Rijikernberg, the Finance Minister with alleged strong links to Mswati’s mercenaries, was allegedly involved.

"I have known for some time that the desperate Swazi State has decided to enlist me as their enemy number one.They wanted to link me to all sorts of things that they are allegedly accusing me of being involved in.But amongst them, I have also been aware that they have made attempts to buy certain people in Swaziland and South Africa for my assassination, and central to this is the involvement of prominent businesspeople, particularly Neal and his companies under the directive of the King,”said the PUDEMO President.

A questionnaire was sent to Finance Minister Neal Rijikernberg; however, he had not responded at the time of compiling this report.

It is alleged that on or around 21st January 2023, King Mswati’s mercenaries with alleged links to the Finance Minister assassinated human rights lawyer Thulani Maseko.

Maseko was killed a few hours after the King threatened those calling for democracy that his mercenaries will deal with them.

After the assassination of the lawyer who was the Chairperson of the pro-democracy MultiStakeholder Forum (MSF), the government later claimed he was killed amid infighting within the pro-democracy movement.

On another note, PUDEMO Deputy President Wandile Dludlu, in a petition addressed and delivered on Tuesday to the Finance Minister on behalf of the political organization, alleged that Rijikernberg was housing and recruiting what he described as a group of mercenaries.

"We as a Swazi Nation note your criminal activities as follows: housing, hosting, and recruiting a group of mercenaries, mostly from your home country, South Africa. Training of Swazi police, soldiers, and warders on sniper skills by your apartheid-trained mercenaries," reads the petition in part.

EXPOSED:PUDEMO senior members run to petition Mswati’s Finance Minister Neal Rijikernberg linked to a plot to assassinate President Mlungisi Makhanya.
PUDEMO Deputy Deputy President Wandile Dludlu during the delivery of the petition.