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Swaziland Communists want republic not name change

SWAZILAND’S Communist Party have condemned a move by King Mswati III to rename the country as “populist nationalism” designed to detract from growing criticism of the squandering of public funds.

The name change — from Swaziland to eSwatini — was announced by Mswati during last week’s celebrations marking the 50th anniversary of the country’s independence from Britain.

However, the Communist Party of Swaziland said it was designed by Mswati and the royal elite to distract from the “massive squandering” of public money used to pay for the king’s birthday celebrations and the country’s national day.

General secretary Kenneth Kunene said: “By appealing to some atavistic quasi-nationalist sentiment in the name of upholding Swaziland’s true pre-colonial identity, Mswati is simply hoping to boost his popularity.”

He added: “The only name change that would have any meaning for Swazi communists, progressives and all the oppressed people of Swaziland is one that would have the words ‘democratic republic’ in it. And that day is fast approaching.”

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