By ALEC LUSHABA Editor | 2019-11-12
A senior King’s advisor has stated that the noise around the fleet of cars which were recently delivered for royal use could have been managed better with communication.
Speaking in his personal capacity as Eswatini National Council Standing Committee member, Prince Nhlonipho has stated that there was nothing wrong with the replacement of the royal fleet, but blamed the lack of experience within government to handle the issue.
He said the hullabaloo caused by the delivery of the new fleet which comprises BMWs was as a result of a total breakdown in communication.
Prince Nhlonipho said had this been explained or handled in such a manner that reasons behind the decision were given, the country wouldn’t be in the state of apathy, amidst the whole list of other pressing issues, which presents a dim view of the country’s leadership.
He challenged government to come out clear on the recent purchase of the fleet, including those delivered for the King’s use so that people can appreciate who paid for them and whether public funds were ever involved or not.
The prince said it shouldn’t just be easier to explain the royal escorts and leave out the rest.
“The new fleet of BMWs was indeed purchased as replacement by government. They are used by the army and Royal Eswatini Police Service as royal escorts,” he said.
The prince said the lack of explanation created into people’s minds the notion that the country’s leadership does as it pleases and does not care about Emaswati.
“We live in a kingdom where the King and Ingwenyama exist in those two roles. We need government to understand that. We cannot have a situation where it is the King or Ingwenyama operating in variances with each other. Having said so, we also expect government to understand the dual function of the Head of State’s office.
“They cannot choose to answer for one action and completely be quiet on another. Such a situation creates confusion within the populace and people can end up making their own conclusions, because they are not guided with the proper facts,” the prince said.
The longest serving ENCSC member said he has no doubt about the King and Ingwenyama’s vision for the country.
“His Majesty the King has since installation in 1986, for which I have spent most of my years with him, has never hidden his desire and vision for the country. He has in fact led from the front and engineered a number of projects that are destined to take the country forward. I somehow fail to understand why to date we still struggle to understand his perspective,” Prince Nhlonipho said.
He said of the King, “As a leader, he has some veto powers and some decisions are treated with such respect, especially when he sees that would improve the well-being and welfare of his people. We can point to many such decisions and he has been proven right. We do need to allow him to enjoy those powers as well. We need government to understand that and explain his vision and actions succinctly to the people.”
The price said he is also alive to the Strategic Roadmap which has brought about the new fuel levies, which has resulted in commodity prices going up.
“I am also aware of the need for government to pay public servants the Cost of Living Adjustment (CoLA). But what I am saying with deep pain is that much of what is being talked about could be explained and for people to understand the King’s vision,” he said.
The prince did caution about corruption, which he said whilst the King shows the way, there seems to be people who take advantage of his directives and start to abuse public resources.
He said such elements need to be weeded out as they compromise and taint the King’s good name.
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