Times of Swaziland
7 January 2009
MBABANE – Police have told former cabinet minister Mfomfo Nkhambule to watch his mouth.
The gripe of the state police were articles Nkhambule writes in the Times of Swaziland newspaper where he expresses his political opinions.
The articles are published every Monday under the title ‘Mfomfo on Monday.’
Apparently, the former Health and Social Welfare Minister’s articles have been rubbing certain quarters the wrong way and Nkhambule had to be called to order.
Nkhambule, now Chairman of Inhlava Forum (a political party), confirmed the questioning.
‘I was invited by the head of the Intelligence Unit, who identified himself as Magagula, to Matsapha Police Station where he was with two subordinates (a certain Maseko and Sibandze). They questioned me over the articles I have been writing. I was also warned that the articles were now taking a subversive slant and cautioned me that I was now skating on thin ice,’ said the former Mtfongwaneni MP.
He said they impressed upon him that the articles were no longer just a column but were starting to hit on the authorities and could incite people to revolt against the head of state and this was beginning to pose a security threat.
Nkhambule said the officers informed him that as much as the country had a new constitution, there were still laws that could be used against him, which were enacted before independence and they had very serious consequences.
Nkhambule stated though that the police were not violent towards him but spoke in a conciliatory tone.
‘I was amazed that we still have such responsible people in the force. I can safely say that I got the message as they drove their point across without fighting with me,’ said Nkhambule.
The former legislator said his response to the police was that he understood their concerns and thanked them for their warning.
Asked whether he would stop writing the way he normally did after the warning from the police, the former legislator elected to play his cards close to his chest.
‘We shall see in next week’s (Monday) article. My duty is to educate people politically and about democracy. I still believe that power should not be in the hands of one person but in all the citizens of a country,’ said Nkhambule.
Police spokesperson Vusi Masuku confirmed Nkhambule’s meeting with the police. He said the police went there to ‘interview Nkhambule.’