Tuesday, October 21, 2008


Swazi Observer

15 October 2008

Mtiti abused powers - Mahlaba

By Sabelo Mamba

UNIVERSITY of Swaziland Lecturer Mahlaba Mamba has taken former Minister of Agriculture and Co-operatives Mtiti Fakudze to High Court for an order disqualifying him as an elected Member of Parliament under Dvokodvweni Constituency.

Mamba, who is a former Cabinet Minister himself, alternatively wants the court to declare the process and results of the secondary national elections conducted on September 19 null and void.

Mamba, in his affidavit, argues that Fakudze’s campaign was based on a combination of abuse of his powers as minister of State and sheer threats against those who considered voting for another candidate.

He says Fakudze assured the community that he would instruct officials in the ministry of public works and transport to rehabilitate the gravel road from Sigcaweni to Dvokodvweni Constituency and that this would be done before the end of the week.

“True to his words, a dozer arrived in the area within a couple of days and rehabilitated the road over a period of about one week,” he alleges.

Mamba further alleges that Fakudze sent a government tanker to supply water in the area.

He also claims that on the voting day at Malindza High School polling station centre, Fakudze brought voters from areas that were outside the boundaries of Dvokodvweni Constituency. “These voters came from Siweni area, which is under Hlane Constituency,” he states.

Mamba says during the primary elections these voters had actually voted at Hlane Constituency, where they belonged.

“I submit that the issues canvassed above are individually serious enough to taint the elections process with illegality and malpractice,” he argues.

Mamba is being represented by Titus Mlangeni while Fakudze is being defended by Bheki Maphalala.

The case is pending at the High Court.

Link http://www.observer.org.sz/main.php?id=47685&section=main


Swazi Observer

14 October 2008


By Njabulo Dlamini

ELECTIONS under Mhlume Inkhundla might have to be held again after two winners threw doubts over their ability to serve as Indvuna Yenkhundla and Bucopho respectively.

The Indvuna Yenkhundla is Victor Mdakane and Bucopho is Pat Mokoena.

The MP, Siphiwe Kunene, who was employed as Section Manager has already assumed her Parliamentary duties and will leave the company.

MPs get approximately E26 000 a month.

Mokoena, who was Personel Officer at the RSSC is entitled to about E13 000 (including salary and all other perks and benefits) whilst Mdakane may get about E10 000, including basic salary and other perks.

If they assume the Indvuna and Bucopho jobs, they stand to get E2 000 and R3 000 respectively - a major departure from what they get at the RSSC.

Mokoena has chosen to remain with the company, whilst the Headman, Victor Mdakane is yet to decide.

They have been asked to either resign from their posts and pursue the new appointments.

The action by the RSSC is viewed by some as akin to unfair dismissal.

The feeling is that they should have been granted leave of absence instead of being asked to resign.

They have also been asked to vacate houses and surrender company property.

Correspondence titled 'Procedure for handling appointments to political office, public office or similar non-RSSC roles', is dated September 18, 2008, a day before secondary elections.

"It is intriguing why the company chose to release the document on the 18th; where were they all along?"some wondered.

The correspondence states: "Any employee who intends to engage or become involved in any external, non-RSSC, business interests is required to declare such interests by written application to the Managing Director as provided in Human Resources Procedure 1.3".

5.1 states that the offer of employment at RSSC is made and accepted on the basis of full-time employment in terms of which employees are expected to dedicate 100% of their time and energy towards meeting the goals and objectives of the corporation.

'Therefore, unless approved by the corporation in accordance with HR Procedure 1.3 (Avoidance of Conflict of Interest) employees shall not undertake any other job or appointment during the tenure of their employment'.

In 5.2 of the regulation is states that to become an MP, Indvuna YeNkhundla or Bucopho beNkhundla is deemed to be a full-time occupation.

'Any serving employee who assumes such appointment, cannot adequately perform the two functions of employee in RSSC and the other external business commitments at the same time'.

5.3 Any employee who elects to take up political office, public appointment or other external engagement will be required to resign his/her employment with the Corporation.

In 7.1.1 it says once the appointments have been made, the manager concerned will brief the employee about company policy as stated in these guidelines.

7.1.2 The employee will consider and should he/she elect to pursue the political/public career he/she will complete form HR 3.12.3 (Notice of Termination) formalising the decision to resign from the employ of the corporation.

The HR procedure is signed by General Manager Joe Shilubane and John Du-Plessis.

MP Kunene confirmed that the company wrote to them about the matter.

Human Resources Manager - Administration Dumsani Dlamini referred inquiries to the MD who was unavailable.

EBC comments

MEANWHILE, the Elections and Boundaries Commission (EBC) Chairman Chief Gija Dlamini said there was nothing much they could do about the developments.

"The only setback would be if the entire inkhundla team were to step down meaning fresh elections staged.

That would be a financial setback to us but there's nothing we could do to get to that.

"Otherwise each organisation has its own set of rules as seen with government which asked civil servants to either resign or proceed on a five-year leave.

Other organisations may opt to proceed on a different route as seen in this instance. It's beyond the EBC's grasp," Chief Gija said.

Otherwise, he noted, their hope was for an amicable settlement between the two parties.

Link http://www.observer.org.sz/main.php?id=47646&section=main


Times Sunday

12 October 2008

I gave MPs lots of bread—Mr Bread owner


MBABANE— REVEALED: Mister Bread boss Wyne Levendale ‘assisted many’ MPs in their campaign for Parliament elections.

Some of the aspiring MPs were given loads of bread to buy votes, while other sponsorships from Mister Bread came in the form of cash prizes for soccer tournaments hosted by the campaigning nominees.

In return for the favour, they were supposed to elect him to be a senator once they were inside Parliament. But the plot did not go well, as Levendale lost to Tom Mndzebele, who made history by becoming the first visually impaired man to become a senator. Mndzebele got 44 votes while Levendale got 16 after a run off.

On Friday during the selection of senators, Mtsambama MP Bheki ‘No Problem’ Mkhonta nominated Levendale.

MP Mkhonta, a SUB Manager by occupation, yesterday acknowledged that Levendale assisted many MPs during the run down to the elections. He said he was not pleased that his nominee had lost, but was however happy that Mndzebele was eventually successful.

He further explained why he nominated Levendale. He listed several reasons why he wanted Levendale to become a senator.

"The first reason is that he is a Swazi who registered for the elections at Hhukwini area. Electing him would have made us a non-racist country. Our parliament should be balanced along racial lines, as much as we need to have people from the disabled Swazi community represented. I also believe that he has invested a lot of money in Swaziland and is committed to poverty alleviation in that his company employs over 300 people who have dependants.

"I also know for a fact that he assisted a lot of MPs while they were still campaigning for elections. The assistance came in many forms, including prizes for soccer tournaments organised by the MPs. There was free bread provided for the people, which is another way of alleviating poverty," he claimed, adding: "As for soccer, he has sponsored our 1st division league and many other community leagues."

MP Mkhonta said electing Levendale would have encouraged other investors who own businesses in the country. He said Levendale’s election would also be good for his constituency, Mtsambama.

Even though they are rivals in business, Mkhonta says he believes Levendale would have added value to the upper House.

"Nonetheless, I would like to congratulate Mndzebele who was the ultimate winner. I believe he represents a section of our society that has been marginalized over the years," he said.

Levendale said he was not bitter about the loss. "It’s fine, we can only try. At the end of the day, I am happy for the man who eventually won. I have no hard feelings," he said yesterday.

He confirmed that he assisted a lot of MPs when they were still campaigning. He, also, did not disclose any names.

He, however, said donating to impoverished rural areas was his company policy, though the donations were distributed via the then Parliament hopefuls.

He said his interest to become a senator was purely for the development of the country. "The difference between me and some of the people there is that I already have a well paying job, being a senator would have been purely a social responsibility. It was not a way of enriching myself. I wanted to participate in development because I believe Swaziland is a beautiful country that has a lot of potential," he said, adding: "However I believe there are many other people who are there purely for the development of the country, not to enrich themselves."

Chief Gija, the Chairman of the Elections and Boundaries Commission said he had been told that there was a case involving bread that is due to be heard in the high court. He was unsure whether it involved Mr Bread.

He further said donations should not be done with the expectation that there will be a favour returned.

"We have already warned against such donations. Giving is a blessed thing. However, when you give, you should not expect to be given a favour in return," he said. He said people elected into parliament were expected to be honest, and to desist from behaviour that is not in line with the law.

Link http://www.times.co.sz/index.php?news=2142


Weekend Observer

11 October 2008

Only Ngoma, Thandi bounced back

By Fanyana Mabuza

Only two members of the last Senate have bounced back. The Senate members nominated by MPs in the last Parliament who will be returning again are Ngom’yayona Gamedze and Thandi Shongwe, who were also nominated and elected by the current crop of MPs at Parliament yesterday. Gamedze was Deputy President while Shongwe served as Minister for Tourism, Environment and Communications in the last Parliament.

Below is a list of MP elected Senators in the last Parliament:

1. Rowan Howe

2. Ngomuyayona Gamedze

3. Adam Bomber Mtsetfwa

4. Mike Temple

5. Isaac Shabangu

6. Albert Shabangu (Late and replaced by Thandi Nxumalo)

7. Thandi Shongwe

8. Winnie Magagula

9. Nokukhanya Gamedze

10. Mary Magwaza

The new MP elected members of the Senate are:

1. Thandi Shongwe

2. Robert Zwane

3. Ngom’yayona Gamedze

4. Bhutana Dlamini

5. Tom Mndzebele

6. Bon’sile Mngometulu

7. Nozubele Bujela

8. Nelsiwe Shongwe

9 .Ndileka Dlamini

10. Victor Makhosezwe Malambe

Link http://www.observer.org.sz/weekend/main.php?id=47585&section=mainweek


Swazi News

11 October 2008

Prince Guduza Speaker, MP Esther his Deputy

LOBAMBA- Prince Guduza was yesterday re-elected to be the House of Assembly Speaker while Mbabane East MP Esther Dlamini, who is in her second term running in Parliament, was elected his deputy.

This was during the 9th Parliament’s first session where members of the House were sworn in.

The favourite for the Speaker position and former Deputy Speaker MP Trusty Gina from Nkilongo Inkhundla lost.

The election of Prince Guduza, who was neither elected nor appointed for a seat in the House of Assembly, came after a motion that was moved by Sithobelweni MP Patrick Mamba and seconded by MP Henry Dlamini.

The constitution allows nomination of a non-member of the House on condition that this individual once served a term or more in Parliament. Prince Guduza was among appointed MPs in the previous Parliament. Infact he has been in Parliament for more than one term. He was once a Cabinet Minister.

On the other side of the coin another motion to elect MP Gina as Speaker was moved by Lubulini Member of Parliament and gospel singer of note Timothy Myeni and was seconded by MP Sibongile Hlophe.

During the election 63 MPs took part in the voting and Prince Guduza became the eventual winner with 41 votes while MP Gina trailed with 22 votes.

Unlike in the tightly contested Speaker’s position, MP Dlamini’s (Esther) election as deputy to Prince Guduza was a one-horse race. It was the only motion and it was unopposed.

Earlier at exactly 15 minutes before the voting for the Deputy Speaker, Members of Parliament were found in the Parliament corridors deliberating on who should take the Deputy Speaker’s position following MP Gina’s loss to Prince Guduza.

Some advised that she should not stand for election after losing the Speaker’s race and seemingly MP Gina obliged.

"We are still trying to talk to MP Gina not to stand for the Deputy Speaker position because it would greatly affect her if she loses," one of the MPs was overheard saying.

In his remarks Prince Guduza advised parliamentarians to work as a unit while deliberating on laws that would have a positive influence on government policies.

"Everyone working in Parliament should ensure that we work towards curbing corruption," Prince Guduza told the House.

In her remarks Deputy Speaker MP Dlamini (Esther) thanked parliamentarians for having confidence in her.

Link http://www.times.co.sz/index.php?news=2110

Weekend Observer

11 October 2008

Prince Guduza SPEAKER

Stories by Sisho Magagul

Prince Guduza has retained the position of Speaker in the House of Assembly. The motion to elect the prince was moved by MP Magwebetane Patrick Mamba, who was seconded by Ntfonjeni MP Henry Dlamini.

Prince Guduza beat former speaker Trusty Gina to the position. Gina was nominated by Timothy Myeni, and seconded by MP Siphiwe Kunene.

Prince Guduza won the vote with a landslide as he got 41 votes whilst Gina amassed 22 votes.

There were 63 legislators present in the House, with the exception of a representative from Kwaluseni where primary elections will be held today.

Prince Sihlangusemphi did not show up for unknown reasons.

Motivating his motion from the election of Prince Guduza, MP Mamba urged members to vote for the Prince because he apparently had been able to bring the House to order during heated debates.

“Prince Guduza is an educated man who has 15 years experience doing Parliament work. In the last Parliament, some debates became heated and emotions flared and Prince Guduza was able to calm the situation and bring order in the House,” he said.

He said the prince is a diligent man who is over competent to lead the House and maintain its honourable status.

Timothy Myeni, when motivating his motion for the election of Gina into the Speaker position, said Gina is an Iron Lady who has been able to lead the House competently when given the reins during the Speaker’s absence in the last Parliament.

“We have seen her handling debates very well. Her election would also indicate to the world that Swaziland recognises women in the country,’ he said.

However, Gina lost to the Prince after the vote.

Attorney General Majahenkhaba Dlamini led the prince to take the oath at exactly 12:56pm.

Mbabane East MP, Esther Dlamini was elected Deputy Speaker of the House. She was nominated by Nkwene MP Aaron Sotja Dladla.

She was the only candidate. The house unanimously voted her in.

Link http://www.observer.org.sz/weekend/main.php?id=47582&section=mainweek