Communist Party of Swaziland
Friday 10 December 2021:- The Communist Party of Swaziland (CPS) commemorates Human Rights Day in the year of the worst atrocities committed by the Mswati autocracy against the people. Human Rights Day is a reminder that the people of Swaziland still languish under a monarchical dictatorship that continues to severely limit their democratic rights.
Since 29 June 2021, Mswati has, through his security forces, killed about 100 people, with hundreds severely injured, including others maimed in a bid to crush democracy protests. The regime’s military has been the most vicious, even engaging in the egregious act of throwing people into fire merely for protesting. The regime has thus far arrested about 700 people for political crimes.
The June atrocities were preceded by the arbitrary stoppage of protests on 24 June and the shutting of the internet by the regime.
This year, the people of Swaziland came out in their numbers to call for the democratisation of the country, marching under the Democracy Now campaign. Particularly since the massacre, an overwhelming majority of the people of Swaziland are now calling for the total overthrow of the monarch, to be replaced by a democratic republic, effectively aligning themselves with the voice of the Communist Party in this regard.
The 2021 protests thus marked a major turning point in the struggle for democracy in Swaziland. The role of opportunism has failed to dampen the people’s spirit for democracy as they keep organising themselves in the communities, waging relentless struggles for democracy.
It was students who mobilised the entire country in May this year to demand the end of police violence. This followed the killing of a university student, Thabani Nkomonye, in early May, the details of which the police had concealed from the public. Students organised under the Swaziland National Union of Students mobilised the forces of democracy into demanding justice for all victims of police violence, and that marked the spark of the 2021 national uprising.
The role played by students, from primary schools to tertiary, in waging the struggle, has thus been crucial. The regime has responded to students’ demands for free quality education with viciousness. Learners as young as seven years old have not been spared from the security forces’ brutality.
While SADC has entered the fray and agreed separately with Mswati to convene a national dialogue forum, the reality is that Mswati is persistent in his commitment to never surrender power to the people. The dictator has stated countless times that he will not ever dialogue with the masses on any issue pertaining to the future of the country.
Mswati’s unwillingness to surrender power has been demonstrated yet again in recent weeks when his police invaded communities, assaulted and arrested community members for exercising their political rights. The people of Mkhitsini are the latest victims of such tactics.
The deepening police violence should thus awaken more people to the reality that their freedom shall come neither from Mswati nor from SADC. The people are the masters of their own destiny.
The CPS thus calls for unity of the oppressed people of Swaziland to wage a relentless struggle against the Mswati autocracy. Communist activists will continue to work on the ground to strengthen the trade union movement, which will be a crucial factor in waging a nationwide insurrection towards total democracy.
Communist activists are also daily involved in building community councils, to defend the people while at the same time building deep-rooted people’s democracy.
The regime has shown its inhumanity by continuing to keep Comrade Amos Mbedzi in jail, despite the fact that he is in urgent need of medical attention. Comrade Mbedzi has been imprisoned since 2008. His continued imprisonment marks gross violation of prisoner rights, and he should thus be released to return home in South Africa to receive better medical treatment.
The CPS extends its solidarity with the Cuban people who are fighting every day to defend their country from imperialist aggression. The CPS also stands with the people of Venezuela and the entire Latin America in defending their countries’ sovereignty and the various nations’ rights to self-determination.
While the world commemorates Human Rights Day, the people of Palestine still languish under a cruel apartheid regime which has stripped them of all their rights, in gross violation of international law. The CPS reiterates its solidarity with the people of Palestine in their struggle for freedom.
The CPS also stands in solidarity with the people of Western Sahara who are still colonised by Morocco. The CPS also conveys its solidarity with the rest of the African peoples who are engaged, in one way or another, in struggles for justice.
The CPS condemns the continued persecution of Julian Assange, a journalist who is now facing real threat of being extradited to the USA to face espionage charges for exposing the US military’s crimes particularly in the Middle East.
ISSUED BY THE COMMUNIST PARTY OF SWAZILAND