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Saturday, 30 July 2011

CALLS TO PROBE SWAZI KING’S WEALTH

There are growing calls in Swaziland to open to public scrutiny a secretive royal fund worth several billion rands and for it to be used to help counter the kingdom’s worsening financial crisis, the Mail and Guardian newspaper in South Africa reports.


Tibiyo Taka Ngwane is an investment fund with extensive shares in a number of businesses, industries, property developments and tourism facilities in Swaziland.

It was set up ‘in trust’ for the people of Swaziland by its first monarch, King Sobhuza II,
but it remains under the control of his son, King Mswati III, who has been accused of abusing it for personal gain.

Tibiyo is kept totally separate from government accounts and does not appear in the national budget or any of the economic reports now being used by the country to solicit financial bailouts.

Vincent Ncongwane, secretary general of the Swaziland Federation of Labour and member of the Swaziland Democracy Campaign, said, ‘If this is indeed a national trust for the people of Swaziland then we should have the right to call on it in times of need -- and we are saying this is a time of need more than ever before.’

To read the full report, click here.

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