8 August 2008
AG says multi-partism is no democracy
By Sabelo Mamba
ATTORNEY General Majahenkhaba Dlamini has said multi-partism does not provide a democratic system.
The AG was making his submissions during a full bench case at the High Court where political parties and trade unions are challenging the legitimacy of the Elections and Boundaries Commission (EBC) and its individual members.
He said, as result, political parties did not fit the present system of government.
"At nomination stage, a person nominated has to be supported by 10 people to stand as a candidate," he said.
"Individual members are stakeholders of the Tinkhundla system of governance, but political parties are not to the elections. Multi-partism does not mean there is democracy."
He said in a multi-party state the opposition often does not stage, a reasonable chance of winning.
"Democracy is not based on the political party system," Dlamini said.
“If two people agree, they do not have to form a political party. The party system is not an agreeable concept on the ground. Multi-partism does not provide a democratic system.”
The full bench comprised Justices Stanley Maphalala, Jacobus Annandale and Mbutfo Mamba, who reserved judgement.
The applicants include People's United Democratic Movement, Ngwane National Liberatory Congress, Swaziland Federation of Trade Unions, Swaziland Federation of Labour and the Swaziland National Associations of Teachers.
The respondents are Prime Minister Themba Dlamini, Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister Prince David, Parliament Speaker Prince Guduza and Senate President Gelani Simelane.