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Friday, 10 September 2010

SWAZI STATE TERROR CONDEMNED

The following is a media statement from the People’s United Democratic Movement (PUDEMO) about the mass protest march that took place in Manzini, Swaziland, on Wednesday (8 September 2010).


PUDEMO CONDEMNS STATE ARROGANCE AND TERROR ON INNOCENT PROTESTORS

8 September 2010

The protest action that was in Mbabane did not accomplish its intended objective of presenting petitions to the government. Once again the oppressive and repressive nature of the state was witnessed by the protestors.

In the first instance, the Minister of Labour did not come out to receive the petition, a trend that has been going in the country for many years when petitions had to be presented to government. The government wanted to send a junior office to receive the petition. This shows the disgusting attitude the government of the country has towards its people.

The second factor causing the protestors not to present the petition was the arrogant, provocative and repressive behaviour of the state police. The police wanted to forcefully remove Wandile Dludlu from the protestors because he was deemed not to be part of those who should protest against the state. And police were acting on an instruction by the state which has given itself the right to dictate who should protest against it! In the process, the police assaulted and manhandled several protestors in the skirmish that ensured resulting to two workers getting forcefully and brutally thrown and held inside a police caspir that was on standby.

Earlier in the day the President of PUDEMO Mario Masuku was visited by state police acting on government instruction to take and keep him at the Police Headquarters in Mbabane on the pretext that he was not supposed to attend the protest action. Later on he was escorted home where he was placed under house arrest for the duration of the protest action.

This is the hallmark of the Tinkhundla regime. It sustains it power over the people through force, intimidation, harassment, fear and repression while it tells the world the direct opposite of existing concrete conditions.

This dictatorial and arrogant behaviour and tendencies of the state in Swaziland deserves the strongest and unreserved condemnation by the civilized and democratic world. PUDEMO condemns this undemocratic and disrespectful behaviour by the state. We have always expressed clearly over the years the arrogance of the state and all we got for telling the truth was to be labelled unSwazi, disrespectful and most of all terrorists.

However, this arrogance and terror orchestrated by the state will not deter us and the struggling masses of our country until the constitutional multiparty democracy is achieved.

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