Local News: THE DIE IS CAST!


“I’ll take my chances and cling on to the idea of the Executive Monarchy, or avoid the so called dialogue altogether”, these according to an insider who spoke to ‘The Bridge’ on condition of anonymity, are the words of an emboldened King Mswati who, according to our insider, “continues to surprise us with his unpredictability and lack of prudence and judiciousness”.

When asked as to what could be the source of the king’s confidence especially at the face of unprecedented and sustained activism in the country, the careful royal insider responds:

"The best thing to happen for the king, well which was clearly the worst thing for every other Swazi including the royalty by the way- was for him to be absolved when he refused to be measured in his tone and pronouncement and thought as cowards and sell outs of those from the royal family who exhibited signs of panic.” 

 But how something is good for the king is bad for the rest of the royalty at the same time, we probe our insider to which she responds: “well, if the institution is done way with, gone too will be our perks which for most of us is the primary source of income. To the king, it is just unthinkable that there could ever be country called eSwatini without him at the helm.

She adds: “there were moments when a lot thought the king really meant what he said when he gave commitments and undertaking to (SA President) Cyril Ramaphosa about any form of round table discussions, but his recent posture says we were all bluffed. I believe Ramaphosa himself fell for the bluff.

So what does the king make of the recent preparations for dialogue by the country’s progressive? It is said the king is very quick to refer to anyone who dares asks that questions to the constitution which makes provision of Sibaya and adds that ‘lofuna kulwa, emasi abekwe elangeni’ (the die is cast). Interestingly, it is said the king is always aware of disharmony within the progressives’ camp which he seems to think handicaps them from forming and presenting a much needed united front.

Quite surprisingly, the monarch views and considers the internal dynamics within the royal family to be of a more serious and formidable threat to his throne. He is of the view that some reformists within the royal family are sponsoring the idea that as part of their concessions, both the government and the royal family must give in to the demand of a constitutional monarch and further sweeten it by saying that as part of the deal, he – King Mswati—be removed as king and be replaced by someone to be chosen by hitherto nonexistent ‘Council of Royal Affairs’. 

Continues our insider, "…he says there are a lot of Judas Iscariots in the form of his brothers and the names of (princes) Lonkhokhela, David and Gcina (who is ambassador in the United Arab Emirates). The king suspects that the latter is being used as a proxy by some senior Princes. Other than that, the king is oozing confidence…”

The other tell-tale sign in the king’s mind that he is successfully consolidating was the attendance of Incwala, which even though far from mirroring the legions of regiments of past times, it was still good picture given the contemporary challenges. Of course he was emboldened by the briefing of the existence of ‘patriotic formations’ like Mangololo. 

The briefing he has is that Mangololo was an initiative of ordinary citizens without the mobilization and influence of prominent people in society and the royal family. This, at least according to the king, is not surprising considering the many beneficiaries of the Tinkhundla system in the judiciary, parastatals and business community. 

The king also attributes his ability to consolidate to a ‘relatively’ successful Incwala. Asked about the king’s view and attitude on the much talked about dialogue, our insider indicated that to her best reading of the current conjecture, the king is adamant that the only rightful platform is Sibaya.

Then there are the different interests from the role of the international society in the developments. When the office of the US embassy enquired from the leaders of the pro democracy movement during a recent visit to the embassy about the progressives’ plan if they come to power, it was analysed as an indication of how some foreign intelligence agencies view the state of the progressives in the country and their lack of coherence. This could easily explain the lackadaisical interest shown by international players with good repute. The king is obviously a recipient of such briefings.

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