The Swaziland Coalition of Concerned Civic Organisations (SCCCO) has hit out at the greed of Barnabas Dlamini, the kingdom’s illegally-appointed Prime Minister, his deputy, four members of the Swazi Royal Family, at least nine cabinet ministers (past and present) and a gaggle of petty council officials, who are embroiled in a controversy over the purchase of Swazi nation land in Mbabane.
SCCCO says the million emalengeni they have saved themselves in the land purchase could have saved 500 of the jobs of civil servants that have to be cut in an attempt to gain International Monetary Fund (IMF) support for a loan after the Swazi economy went into meltdown after years of mismanagement by governments appointed by King Mswati III, sub-Saharan Africa’s last absolute monarch.
The comments come in an end of year message delivered by Bishop Meshack Mabuza, the SCCCO chair.
The following is how the Times of Swaziland, the kingdom’s only independent daily newspaper, reported the statement. LINK
23 December 2010
‘E1million land discounts could have saved 500 jobs’
MBABANE – The Swaziland Coalition of Concerned Civic Organisations (SCCCO) has expressed discontent over the land purchase discounts received by ministers saying that money could have gone towards job saving.
In an end of year statement released yesterday touching on wide ranging issues, the SCCCO, through its Chairperson Bishop Meshack Mabuza, expressed concern in the manner in which the matter, which is now under parliament investigation, was handled.
"Look at the Circular No 1 which gives our politicians undeserved and unaffordable pay increases while at the same time they are calling for 7 000 of the lowly paid to become unemployed.
"Look at how they allocate themselves E1 million discounts on land, how many jobs does that equate to? For those on the grade of a lowly office cleaner who earns E2 000 per month, that is 500 jobs that could have been saved, and 5 000 lives spared starvation, desperation and humiliation," he says.
The SCCCO also expresses concern over the issue of human rights.
"We stand beside our brothers and sisters whose pain was so openly and tragically expressed at our people’s parliament this month.
We will not let their stories be forgotten or their suffering ignored. If civil society is about one thing only, it is about calling those in power to account. The courts are an important way to stand up for our rights but they are not the only ones.
"We must recognise that we have to stand up for ourselves each and every day as well; we must retain our dignity in our homesteads, our families, our clans and our communities," it states.
Mabuza says as a Coalition they will continue to campaign for the ability for the people to claim their rights and human dignity.