Maxwell Dlamini, the Secretary General of the Swaziland Youth Congress (SWAYOCO), appeared at Mbabane magistrates court today (24 April 2013) and was remanded in custody until 2 May.
Dlamini is accused of participating in an ‘unlawful activity’, but, it is thought he might later be charged with sedition.
SWAYOCO, is a banned organisation in Swaziland. SWAYOCO was prevented by police from holding a public election rally at Msunduza Township, Mbabane, on 19 April, the day of King Mswati III’s 45th birthday.
Dlamini was arrested following the rally, along with Sonkhe Dube the international secretary of SWAYOCO. Dube was held by police for 17 hours and then released.
Dlamini has officially been charged with a crime of organising and participation in an illegal activity on 19 April in Mbabane, according to the Swaziland United Democratic Front.
When Dlamini was arrested on a previous occasion he reported that he was tortured by Swazi police.
This was when he put on trial for possession of explosives, a case that has been postponed several times. Dlamini is out on bail for that charge.
SWAYOCO reported that the arrest of the two SWAYOCO leaders followed the police clamp down on the rally that was part of the organisation’s campaign for an election boycott.
There have also been several recent arrests of other activists in Swaziland, including Wonder Mkhonza, Mfanawnkosi ‘Boer’ Mntshaliand and Derrick Nkambule, the latter two who were allegedly tortured.
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