Mbabane: In its efforts to maintain peace and order government has swiftly banned the proposed march which is supposed to take place in Mbabane on Wednesday.
This comes after Public Sector unions which include SNAT, NASPAWU and SNA have organized the protest march to deliver petitions to the Ministry of Public Service. Worth noting is that the protest march is set to take place on the day of the resumption of the trial for incarcerated prodemocracy MPs. The protest march is set to start from the coronation park.
On Tuesday the Royal Eswatini Police service issued a statement stating that the proposed march is prohibited. “The nation is advised that that the planned protest march is prohibited by the national commissioner in terms of section 9(2), 3(b) and (6) of the public order act 12 of 2017, in the interest of national security, public order, and safety.”
“To this end, there is no march expected to be stated tomorrow by the PPAs and police will be out there to ensure that the prohibition order is enforced,” reads part of the statement.
In their statement, the police stated that the prohibition of the march has been communicated to the convenors of the protest march for their information and compliance, together with constituencies and other allies.
Responding to the police statement Swaziland National Association of Teachers (SNAT) in a tweet stated that its members must not be shaken by the stamen. “The planned legal march for public sector unions shall continue as planned in Mbabane. The meeting point is Coronation Park at 1000hrs.”
This happens even though the Municipality of Mbabane, in a letter signed by the Municipality’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Gideon Mhlongo dated October 18, 2021, directed to SNAT granted permission for the protest march.
“In terms of the powers vested in the Mbabane city council, you are hereby granted a permit to conduct a march from the coronation park to Gwamile street, turning into Msakato street, to Zwide Street to Mahlokohla street turning into Mahlokohla street, turning into Makhosini road, to Sosiza Road and Umlilo road (between Ministry of Agriculture and fire and emergency services) to deliver a petition to the Ministry of Public Service. Furthermore, the return to the procession will be from the ministry of public service, along the same routes to the coronation park”.