Times of Swaziland
18 September 2008
Cabinet to be dissolved after elections - Percy
By WELCOME DLAMINI
MBABANE – Cabinet will not be dissolved until after the parliamentary elections, when a new government has been formed.
Government spokesperson Percy Simelane said the present team of ministers had the full backing of the constitution hence their stay in office was legal.
Simelane said cabinet cannot be dissolved without a new team in place because there were lot of pressing issues that needed to be attended to.
"Even yesterday (Tuesday), the ministers were meeting to look at matters that the country is going through which could have been left unattended had cabinet been dissolved," Simelane said.
Attorney General Majahenkhaba Dlamini said even though there was no specific law that stipulated the period for cabinet’s dissolution, the most sensible thing to do is to dissolve the team of ministers when a new one is in place.
"You cannot run a country without a cabinet and what must be done is to dissolve when it is convenient to do so," the AG said.
Dlamini said there were many factors to consider when dissolving cabinet, like the many court cases that are a result of the elections.
"If the court cases drag, then that would mean a delay in forming a new government thus there would be no one running the country during that period," Dlamini wondered.
Dlamini said in any case the final decision lied with His Majesty King Mswati III who has the powers to effect the dissolution.
"This is a policy issue and as the attorney general I have no jurisdiction over it," Dlamini stated.
Dlamini said the issue was complex and other legal practitioners should be contacted to interpret the law and get their opinion on what should really transpire.
He also mentioned the need to look at how other countries treat such matters and then compare with the local situation.
The trend has been such that cabinet is dissolved before an election and a council of ministers put in place which is also dismissed together with the prime minister in favour of a one man committee as it happened with former king’s private secretary Paul Shabangu.
The one man works closely with the king.