Few register for Swazi poll

2012-08-13 20:43
King Mswati III

King Mswati III

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Mbabane - Swaziland has extended the deadline for voters to register for local polls after only about 27 000 people signed up - less than a tenth of 350 000 in previous polls - a government minister said on Monday.

The registration deadline was on Sunday, but the banned opposition and labour unions have urged Swazis to boycott the election which they deride as a sham in the tightly controlled absolute monarchy.

Housing minister Lindiwe Dlamini said the deadline has been extended to 20 August after only 27 188 registered. For the last parliamentary elections in 2008, more than 350 000 registered in the nation of about one million people.

"The decision to extend the registration period was mainly because the registration did not meet the targeted figures," the minister said, without revealing what the target was.

Individuals screened

The Trade Union Congress of Swaziland as well as the opposition People's United Democratic Movement (Pudemo) - both banned organisations - have urged Swazis to boycott the elections in protest at King Mswati III's rule.

"We won't legitimise the system by attending any election organised under the prevailing undemocratic system," said Vincent Dlamini, the union's national organising secretary.

Political parties are banned under Swaziland's royal Tinkhundla system of government, in which candidates are chosen by local chiefs, seen as tightly controlled by the king.

People in effect then vote for individuals who have already been screened by the chiefs.

"Our stand is clear, we have never participated in Tinkhundla elections, we shall never do so even this year and next year," Pudemo spokesperson Zakhele Mabuza said.

Protests have grown since last year in the traditionally peaceful kingdom, which is bordered on three sides by South Africa.

The country's problems are partly blamed on Mswati's extravagant lifestyle, supporting his 13 wives each in her own palace and high-flying international shopping trips, all paid for by state funds.

Read more on:    king mswati iii  |  swaziland  |  southern africa
NEXT ON NEWS24X

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
3 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24

 
/News
 

US biker deaths down: What's the secret?

Motorcycle deaths are on track to decline for a second year in the US thanks to a so far - on bikes - little-used road safety accessory.

 

Stay safe

US biker deaths down: What's the secret?
Pro's and con's of accredited driver-training
Juvenile pillion riders? Play safe...
Need a family ride? SA's top Mommy Cars
Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

The right brain is emphasised today and it is easy for you to fly into the world of imagination and fantasy with ease. You may...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.