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GOVT PRO FIRES BACK AT US SENATORS

By SIBONISO NKAMBULE | 2023-05-03

Government has hit back at the United States of America (USA) Senator Christopher Coons, accusing him of running a targeted campaign of retaliation against the kingdom’s government.

Government Spokesperson, Alpheous Nxumalo, said Coons could and must not succeed in becoming political conduits for the ‘mass democratic movement,’ which seeks to overthrow the obtaining political system of the kingdom through the use of violence, destruction, intimidation, revolution, and of late, as proposed by Coons in the resolution, the use of illegal sections as a political weapon against individual citizens of Eswatini.

“Neither should senators or members of Parliament of the calibre of Senator Coons, be allowed to succeed in running a targeted campaign of retaliation against the government of the Kingdom of Eswatini by the government of the United States of America,” Nxumalo said.

Tabled
This comes after Coons, who is the chairperson of the USA Congress on Foreign Relations together with Senators, James Risch and Cory Booker tabled a resolution 174 on Eswatini human rights violation.

The senators called upon Eswatini government to expeditiously initiate pre-dialogue preparations and announce a firm date for a credible and inclusive dialogue which will begin prior to the scheduled September elections.

The resolutions were referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations for debate before a decision is taken.

Nxumalo said the diplomatic relations that happily exist between Eswatini and the USA had endured many political storms in the past and now reached a matured stage where it had no room for agitation or sabotage of each other’s interests within the international system through illegal sanctions.

He stated that every opportunity, challenge or misunderstanding had room for consistent friendly engagement and diplomatic negotiations.

“Senators and or members of Parliament around the globe, whose political consciousness and sense of right and proper political judgment has been auctioned to the highest bidder of those who are peddling conspiracies and winter or summer resolutions against our country, should stop mimicking the political vocabulary, terminology and language of the so-called pro-democracy or democratic mass movement in the country,” said the government mouthpiece.

Arguments
He said to begin with, genuine and highly reputable political internationalists should base their arguments or resolutions on political facts and realities, not on political fictions or theories or even perceptions emanating from singular or biased political lobbying.

Nxumalo warned that if this trend of blindly buying into political revolutionaries in the name of calling genuine political reforms would continue unabated it would destroy the moral political fibre and the world wide positive influence wielded by the USA Congress.

 “First and foremost, government finds it difficult and almost impossible to logically respond to the resolution of Senator Coons because it is all based on wrong statement of facts. It is not possible to comment on falsehood. Secondly, the principles of natural justice, which demands or warrants that one be given an audience before judgment, has been completely overlooked and ignored in this situation.

And we all know that this is not only un-American but also a traverse of justice. These are the political fault lines that are destroying the body politics of Washington DC,” Nxumalo stated. 

 Having said that, he maintained that the Eswatini Government exercised an open mind and door policy of engagement, urging those who may have interest about the kingdom’s affairs and statecraft, to feel free in approaching government directly or via the respective diplomatic mission stations around the globe for information and assistance.

He reiterated government’s good standing and warm diplomatic relations with the US Government.

Nxumalo assured the nation that resolutions taken by other nation-States about the kingdom, remained non-binding and applicable in the country because Eswatini laws were not enacted in other countries but only within the country itself.

“Application of such laws or any other investigative processesare also not driven from other country’s various capitals but only from within the Kingdom of Eswatini,” he stated.

In the resolution, the senators accused the country’s authorities of defying the Southern African Development Community (SADC) by not participating in a political dialogue while maintaining crackdowns on differing political views.

They expressed concerns about reports of allegedly continued human rights violations against the people and the harassment of advocates for human rights and constitutionalism in the country.

Further, they alleged that following a visit to Eswatini by SADC delegates in November 2021, the country undertook to organise a national dialogue to address civil unrest structured in the format of Sibaya, which they described as a royally convened and controlled traditional civic consultative forum.

Demands
They accused the country of ignoring widespread demands of pleas of citizens, opposition politicians, civil society and the regional and international community for a genuine consultative forum inclusive of diverse political views.

“Whereas, in October 2021, United National Secretary General Antonio Guterres called on Eswatini to ensure that the people of Eswatini are able to exercise their civil and political rights peacefully.

“Whereas reports indicate that the Government of Eswatini has contracted with international security companies to respond to violence in the country, resulting in increased intimidation against dissenting voices,” read the resolution in part.       

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