The next government of Eswatini (formerly Swaziland) must bring an end to the long record of human rights violations that have blighted the country for more than four decades, Amnesty International said today, as people in Africa’s last absolute monarchy head to the polls.
The Southern African kingdom – which is under the near total control of King Mswati – has a longstanding record of human rights violations, including the routine suppression of the rights to freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly, as well as widespread forced evictions. Swazis will today elect new members of parliament that will form the new government for the next five years.
“This election represents a golden opportunity for an incoming government to comprehensively address longstanding human rights issues,” said Deprose Muchena, Amnesty International’s Regional Director for Southern Africa.
On 8 August 2017, King Mswati approved the Public Order Act, imposing far-reaching restrictions on organizers of public gatherings.