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CANGO loathes Senate seat buying

PRESS STATEMENT

CANGO Secretariat 2018-10-22


In the strongest repugnance, the Eswatini Elections Support Network (EESN) under the auspices of CANGO calls for the investigation and arrest of vote traders in Senate.


The Eswatini electoral college of Members of the House of Assembly elected 10 into Senate from a list of over 60 hopefuls last week. Hogging the headlines, a confirmed vote-buyer threatened to spill the beans after a failed bidding. However, ever since that, it seems the issue has died down. To what end?

This is very disturbing. In election the current election system is premised on a people’s will to elect people individually on merit as seen deserving by electorate after seeing some capacities to serve and influence national development.

It is also disturbing that whilst these allegations continue to be reported by the media, national institutions including the Royal Eswatini Police Service, Election and Boundaries Commission and the Anti-Corruption Commission are missing in action as are not seen leading any investigation into these allegations.

The question remains if our Legislators are up to the task of diligently leading a nation for the next five years when they appear to be using underhanded means to get a seat in honourable August house and some to Cabinet. Really, where are we headed to as a country?

The philosophy of a nation founded on King Somhlolo’s prophecy who warned the nation against the pursuit of money (INDILINGA) but instead choose the scroll (UMCULU) would prove to have been ahead of us. This prophecy became the foundation of the Emaswati way of life. It is regrettable that this great nation has now been trapped in financial quagmire because of pursuing the very thing it was warned against.

The election season, as the nation will recall, was a year blighted by ritual killings suspected to be linked to elections because of greedy individuals all for self-gain.

The country has reached a difficult development trajectory. It is at times like these where men and women of service must be seen taking the upper echelons of leadership in the society including Parliament.

We as an election observer group would like to register our uttermost disappointment at what is happening in our country.

The governance of any country is the most important pillar which determines its success or failure. We therefore urge the law enforcement agents to spring to action and bring those tainted by the scandals including the hopefuls who partook in these alleged revolting deeds to book.

About EESN
EESN is an independent and nonpartisan civil society network set up in 2003 by CANGO to advocate for favorable policy development, transparency and observe elections locally, regionally and internationally with a view on providing an independent opinion on the conduct of elections.

Press Statement by:
Ms Tjengisile Shabangu
EESN Chairperson