The following is a rallying call to the Swazi people issued by the Swaziland Solidarity Network ahead of protests planned for Tuesday (12 April 2011). The Swaziland Government has banned them and said that state security forces will be on the streets to prevent demonstrations.
NOW OR NEVER!!!
The Swaziland Solidarity Network would like to send out words of support and encouragement to every Swazi citizen alive today.
For 38 eight long years the world has watched as you and your grandfathers were reduced to serfs in the country of your birth, the only place your call home.
Throughout all those years you remained resilient and committed to your demands for a just and democratic society.
You risked your lives, lost so many comrades friends and all other economic necessities that the regime withheld from you.
Perhaps unknown to you, throughout all those sacrifices that you made the regime was slowly cracking. Every single little strike action, mass stay away or ordinary protest, was an important blow to the regime.
This is why we cannot allow people who tell you that you must wait a little longer. That somehow, your struggle is not ready. As if throughout all those 38 years, you have been fooling around.
This struggle was meant for one ultimate purpose, and that is the total uprooting of the Tinkundla regime and creating a democratic society in its place. A struggle that continues indefinitely becomes a circus.
We cannot afford to degenerate into that while the people of Swaziland are dying of HIV/AIDS and poverty, robbed of their basic human rights in broad daylight by one family and its bunch of sycophants.
The Swazi government finds itself today in most unfamiliar territory. The Swazi people have the king’s testicles in their hands. It is entirely up to them to decide what to do with him. He is currently in hiding somewhere, literally sweating in panic.
This is not the time for sectarian tendencies. Whatever differences that you had in the past should not be thrown around in public as if you are unaware of the glorious opportunity in your hands.
All political parties, unions and civic organizations, student movements and all progressive forces to join hands and lead this uprising. When we say every one, we mean EVERYONE.
The only thing that the regime has left is brutal force. They have no credibility, whether within the country or externally. Civil servants were right to formally request the current cabinet to resign and that in itself has dealt it a terrible blow. They should have requested the resignation of the king as well.
That brutal force will be their downfall because it will harden the international community’s stance against them. There are media agencies already camped in the country and if one Swazi as much as gets beaten, all secret diplomatic pressure will change to open isolation.
This they know very well, and that is the reason why they are attempting to intimidate the nation by releasing statements. Dogs bark loudest when they are least likely to bite. Never in the history of this oppressive regime have police trained on roads and public places. You need to ask yourselves why this is currently the case.
To understand just how desperate this government is, they have ordered all police vehicles to be rehabilitated in order to stage more roadblocks. In the process they are overstretching themselves even more.
To put it in football terms, while the population is still warming up, the regime has already scored five own goals. This is your moment.
Swazi people, if you understood the opportune moment you have created for yourselves, you would not even finish reading the rest of this statement but would immediately find a way to get yourselves to the heart of the action.
Coherent action is required from all of you. You have the popular mandate from yourselves, your consciences, mankind, your fellow citizens and generations to come.
Never be made to believe otherwise by regimes that keep your fellow citizens destitute in order to buy their mandate with loaves of bread. Swazi people have never given this failed regime any mandate.
Show the world that you are not the cowards that you are frequently purported to be. The world has been waiting for you to join the free world. Stand up now and let the corridors of power reverberate with your demands for a democratic state.
Issued by the Swaziland Solidarity Network [SSN]