The Swazi Government has not given permission for the march in Mbabane today (18 March 2011) to protest against the lack of democracy and the economic meltdown in the kingdom.
Macanjana Motsa, Swazi Government spokesperson, is reported in local media saying the demonstrators need the government’s approval to march.
‘As to why the Swazi people would bother to seek permission from a government that they are removing from power is something which requires explaining from the government spokesperson,’ the Swaziland Solidarity Network (SSN) said in a statement.
Labour unions and students will try to march on the office of the prime minister today to deliver a petition. There are fears that the Swazi state forces will brutally attack the demonstration.
Meanwhile, Wilson Ntshangase, the Minister of Education and Training, told teachers they should not abandon classes and march, ‘because it was illegal’.
The Swazi Observer, the newspaper in effect owned by King Mswati III, sub-Saharan Africa’s last absolute monarch, reported Ntshangase saying the ministry was not informed of the reasons the teachers were abandoning classes today.
‘The minister stated that it would be better if the teachers had at least written a letter just to inform them why they were not going to be in class,’ the newspaper reported.