Mbabane: Prime Minister Cleopas Sipho Dlamini has sent a strong warning to the perpetrators of the ongoing unrest which is now happening in schools.
Speaking in a press briefing at the cabinet offices on Thursday afternoon the premier warned on the ongoing unrest and urged emaSwati to refrain from such activities and drawback to what they are known for which is mutual respect and tolerance for each other, adding that peaceful settlement of disputes is the known way of doing things for emaSwati.
The premier emphasized that security will be tightened. “Going forward, the Security Forces will tighten their patrol during curfew hours. Any inconvenience to the public is regretted but worth it in the interest of security for all of us.”
With regards to the schools’ unrest, Dlamini noted that there were some reports that some teachers are involved in this schools’ unrest in the name of their union. The premier said the government has not heard any contradicting report or statement from the union if these allegations were true. He said the responsible Ministry will have to revisit the recognition agreement.
In the past days, the country has seen unrest in a few schools, particularly in the Southern region where children boycotted classes and protested.
The premier highlighted that the children were missing an opportunity they will never recover. He said examination dates were shifted to mitigate the lost time during COVID-19. Dlamini appealed to parents to help safeguard their kinds not to be part of such practices.
Dlamini appealed to Chiefs and School Committees to assist schools to keep order and calm in order to allow children the opportunity to learn. He said appropriate measures will be taken to discipline those involved.
Dlamini highlighted that in any society there will always be those who do not see things in a positive light and those who do not like progress as pursued by others. “Countries undergo change all the time but they don’t destroy what they have in favour of what they aspire for.”
Dlamini said the country was on an upward recovery path before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. He noted that considerable progress had been achieved in roads infrastructure, agricultural infrastructure and the level of employment was improving although by no means satisfactory.
The premier added that government was concerned and worried about the recent events of burning down Tinkhundla centres. He said it should be of major concern to the Chiefs and communities as well. “We all know that these centres serve as an agency for development. Important community records are kept at Tinkhundla centres, including records of payments of elderly grants. One expects that the community would know these perpetrators.”