Those who participate in sham tinkhundla elections are supporters of the tinkhundla system, says TUCOSWA 2nd Deputy Secretary General

Communist Party of Swaziland

Monday 26 December 2022:- Comrade Sikelela Dlamini, the 2nd Deputy Secretary General of the Trade Union Congress of Swaziland (TUCOSWA) on Monday addressed the CPS Summer School held in Mpumalanga, South Africa.

Comrade Sikelela Dlamini made it clear in his address that the workers’ federation has a clear position on the sham tinkhundla elections, such position resolved at the launch of the federation in 2012 and reiterated over the years.

“We will not participate in the sham tinkhundla elections”, said the 2nd DSG.

“One who claims to be against tinkhundla can never participate in the sham elections. Once you participate, it means you are pro-tinkhundla. It is sad that the message in favour of participating in the sham elections is being spearheaded by people we thought were with us. Once you participate in tinkhundla elections, it means the battle lines have been drawn.”

He spoke out against reformism, stating that the progressive movement “must dislodge the system as a whole, not just removing Mswati and hoping that someone else in his position would do better.”

Comrade Sikelela went on to urge the mass democratic movement to not just talk about democracy but come up with a clear political programme which must lead to the complete dismantling of the tinkhundla system.

The 2nd DSG went on to make it clear that any talk about negotiations, particularly without concrete and resolute mass action on the ground can only lead to defeat for the people.

He continued, “We must come up with a programme to build peoples’ power. You do not go to a negotiation process without having gained power on the ground. It is important to build people’s power because the regime utilises all its resources, such as the army, to crush the people. Therefore, we must mobilise for civil disobedience across the country to build people’s power.”

The regime has throughout its life promulgated many oppressive laws to crush workers’ power. One of those is the Public Order Act. The TUCOSWA 2nd DGS showed how this law contains stringent processes before an organisation may hold any protest action.

“This law also gives wide powers to the police to shut down any action if they deem it necessary to do so,” said Comrade Sikelela.

Comrade Sikelela also cautioned delegates about blind loyalty to the “rule of law.”

“Remember comrades, that not all laws are just. We saw this during the apartheid era. Judges applied the law and sentenced many progressives to death, but many of those sentences were unjust,” he stated.

The TUCOSWA leader also called upon his federation and the CPS to work more closely together.

“As TUCOSWA, we want to build closer ties with CPS. We must have bilateral relations and properly cement our relations.”

The CPS Summer School began on 20 December and ends on the 30th.


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