Swaziland to ban anti-Mswati tweets

2012-03-23 19:48

Mbabane - Swaziland plans to crack down on criticism of King Mswati III by making it illegal to bad-mouth Africa's last absolute monarch on Facebook and Twitter, the justice minister said on Friday.

"We will be tough on those who write bad things about the king on Twitter and Facebook. We want to set an example," Justice Minister Mgwagwa Gamedze told the senate.

The minister said government was finalising a law that will make it illegal to speak badly of the king on social media networks and that it would soon come to the tiny mountain kingdom's parliament, which rubber stamps legislation.

Mswati has faced growing criticism and unprecedented public protests over the last year due to a financial crisis that has pushed the kingdom to the brink of bankruptcy.

Gamedze was responding to Senator Thuli Msane, who on Thursday said people continuously wrote terrible things about the nation and its authorities on social media.

"It's like the moment Swazi people cross the border to neighbouring countries they begin to go on a campaign to disrespect their own country and king," said Msane.

"Surely there is something that must be done with them. There must be a law that can take them to task."

The minister said he too had noted that the reputation of the country and that of the king was being tarnished, hence the law.

The announcement came as students and labour unions are planning a series of protests in the coming weeks, beginning with a student protest on Monday against the collapse of higher education.

  • garethchrp - 2012-03-23 20:03

    Maybe they wouldn't leave if the King served the people before himself and his family? Freedom of speech anyone? Maybe focus your energy on basic human rights before going after people for speaking their minds?

      Hermann - 2012-03-24 06:50

      Mswati and his kleptomaniacs are now also stealing the peoples' freedom of speech.

  • Oscar - 2012-03-23 20:17

    He is an arrogant fat shyte that is not even good enough to operate a spade at the municipality, FU Mswati are you now going to pull a Mugabe on your people? The arrogance of these mentally retarded African leaders is really not amusing any more.

  • Brad.Kopping - 2012-03-23 20:20

    Nothing like taking away peoples freedom of speech to show how much of a man you are and how much critisism you can really handle....

  • jookco - 2012-03-23 20:36

    Mali president’s whereabouts unknown after coup

  • Mark - 2012-03-23 20:50

    "The minister said he too had noted that the reputation of the country and that of the king was being tarnished..." Aw, don't be modest, semi-beloved King - you did this all by yourself.

  • Gregory - 2012-03-23 21:13

    Self centered d!ckhead . Obviously deserves the critsism . He just opened a can of worms.

  • Faizie - 2012-03-23 21:32

    Whats happened about our homo hating king. Seems to be all quiet on the HRC investigation. Sounds like a bummer to me

  • Bless Boswell - 2012-03-23 22:08

    He should not behave in a way that attracts criticism. He's greedy and arrogant.

      Bless Boswell - 2012-03-23 22:10

      Maybe he should set an example to his people. Right now he's an embarrassment.

  • ian.d.samson - 2012-03-23 22:51

    Aw shame! Is the pressure of his corruption getting to him now? Shame? Poor King! Don't take any notice of his rantings and ravings, it's probably all intimidatory rhetoric anyway!

  • Africa21stcentury - 2012-03-24 03:11

    I am not a CASATU and even less a ANCYL supporter, but these are the only organisations , who have spoken out cearly against this pathetic tyrant in the making. This corrupt guy, who got this country as a birthday present, should be removed from power. The deavening silence from the SA government, and from the AU, is highly disturbing. Let him get himself a proper job, to maintain his playboy lifestyle with his, 18 wives and untold girlfriends. But for the population, in one of the poorst countries in Afica, to pay for this BS, is INSANE!!!!!!

      Stephen - 2012-04-11 16:16

      CASATU, should be marching in support of these people, its far more important than toll roads

  • Africa21stcentury - 2012-03-24 03:24

    @Editor, Again, here is a clear example, that to access your comment site via fb, is highly undesirable. This is not suitable for Africa !!!! For certain nationals, to make certain political statements, can be highly dangerous. It can lead to ones arrest, being beaten up, tortured, and even death. This methode of access is VERY IRRESPONSIBLE from Please reconsider. Your original claim, that fb access would lead to more responsible comments, with less hatred and racism, has proven to be a lot of nonsense!!!!!!!

      Stephen - 2012-04-11 16:19

      Your suggesting that comments be sensored, by who? then you dont have freedom of speach, everyone has a right to offended each other.

  • Evelyn - 2012-03-24 07:24

    swaziland r they going to have a link with twitter & facebook?

  • KCorsar - 2012-03-24 12:35

    Clearly a sign of despot and a legion of minions supporting him, as its the only way they can survive. The last Absolute Monarchy maybe to suffer the same fate as Africa's Last King of Scotland.

  • KCorsar - 2012-03-24 12:40

    Just exactly how do they intend to do this, punish anyone who dares make a comment against the Monarchy, or are they aiming to attack Swazi's only? I am not a Swazi national so how they will pin a Swazi law on citizens from other countries remains to be seen and is an absolute waste of the pitiful resources they have left with which to run the country - do the right thing and look after the people of Swaziland, not just one little 'rich kid'. If I am in future banned from travelling to Swaziland, no great loss to me, they will just lose valuable tourist spend and some vital foreign exchange and airport taxes. Been there and there isnt much more to see anyway.................

  • Mzala Kay Cousin - 2012-03-24 18:35

    Only a govt led by intellectually shallow sycophants and grovellers of a dictator will take its time to monitor social networks. Instead Of Him Workin On Means To Upgrade Our Crisis Engalfed Economy Ucabanga Kutsatsa Imali Ayodlala Ngayo.... How Pathetic n Selfish...!!!!

  • Michael McN - 2012-03-24 22:38

    A dog is barking madly across the street. It is clear from this story that that mad dog has more sense than the Swazi king and all his bootlickers. For mercy's sake the dog must be put down. For Swaziland's sake must the king meet the same fate as the mad dog? Please repost, retweet, share and publicize. We can Hound this king out of office if we try.

  • lynnethbs - 2012-04-12 13:33

    Sue me am going to insult him just now am still thinking of what to say

  • ogodiseng.seonya - 2012-05-06 15:56


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