The area where Swaziland is today has
probably been inhabited for almost a hundred thousand
years. The first place was probably the people san and
khoikhoi. In the 15th century, the Bantu people migrated
to Swazi and eventually formed a kingdom. Three
centuries later, the current royal family Dlamini
established himself on the kingdom's throne. In the 19th
century, British and Boers from South Africa took
control of the area, although the king was allowed to
remain on the throne.
San and khoikhoi are usually described as gatherers
and hunters, but archaeological finds indicate that they
also devoted themselves to livestock management and
Comprehensive guide to and popular abbreviations of Swaziland, covering history, economy, and social conditions.
The Swazis, who today constitute a large majority of
the population, began to search for the area during the
1400s. According to legend, they came across the Limpopo
River and first settled in the current Mozambique. The
royal dynasty of Dlamini dates back to that time. In the
mid-18th century, King Ngwane III must have led his
people across the Lebombo Mountains to the present
In the 19th century, European colonizers from the
surrounding colonies, mainly Boers and British, began to
seize land belonging to the Kingdom to get pasture land
for their livestock. Gradually, Transvaal farmers in
present-day South Africa gained actual power, even
though the royal house existed.
In the early 1900s, the British took over the area
from the Boers. They also let the king sit. When the new
colonizers began demanding tax from the indigenous
population, many Swazi men were forced to work in the
South African mines to pay the tax.
The King gets approved in an opinion poll
An opinion poll shows that 77 percent of Swazis are happy with the king and
have confidence in him. The survey was conducted within the framework of an
independent research project, Afrobarometer, which measures the social,
political and economic situation in Africa's countries. Despite the high
popularity figures, the government dismisses the survey and calls it
unscientific. The reason for the regime's dissatisfaction is assumed to be that
Prime Minister Dlamini was only approved by just over 40 percent of those polled
and that the King, who usually claims that all Swazis support him, has now been
black-and-white that nearly a quarter of his subjects are of a different
Divorce ban for MPs
The leader of the House of Parliament (Senate) announces
that parliamentarians can no longer divorce, as this can embarrass the King, who
earlier in the year has said that a marriage can only be dissolved through
death. Members of Parliament who have already started a divorce procedure are
invited to put it on ice until the term of office expires.
New Prime Minister
King Mswati III reappointed relative Barnabas Sibusiso Dlamini as prime
The spread of HIV is decreasing
The MSF announces that the spread of the HIV virus has slowed down somewhat,
thanks to increased resources, better treatment methods and increased
international assistance (see Social conditions).
International meeting dissolved
The South African trade union organization Cosatu reports that the Swaziland
authorities have dissolved an international union meeting and once again
arrested Pudemo's leader Mario Masuko.
Reform friend elected to the National Assembly
After the second round of elections, it is clear that a reform friend has
been elected to the National Assembly. It is Jan Sithole who chairs the
Swaziland Democratic Party (Swadepa). Sithole promises to change the political
system from within.
Elections to the National Assembly
The first round of elections to the National Assembly is held. Since parties
are not allowed to participate (see Political system), the choice is between a
number of individual candidates who are loyal to King Mswati III. A new feature
is that a handful of people who are referred to as reform friends may be
Kisses can provide fines
The already stringent laws for conduct in the public environment screw up a
snap. In the past, it has been illegal to urinate in public places, debris and
engage in street sales. Now the city of Siteki also forbids intimate kisses. A
slight kiss on a child child is accepted to greet the authorities, but more
challenging kisses between adults may end with the amorous couple having to pay
a fine of the equivalent of 12 US dollars.
Foreign exchange reserves are shrinking
The central bank warns that the country's foreign exchange reserves are now
Child marriage is prohibited
King Mswati III prohibits people under the age of 18 from getting married to
reduce the number of forced marriages. According to Save the Children,
traditional leaders demand that the ban should only apply to "Western marriage".
The opposition calls for election boycotts
The registration of voters begins before the election to the National
Assembly in September. The opposition again urges democracy activists not to
stand in the elections. The boycott takes place in protest of the party ban and
with the motivation that all power is nevertheless gathered with the king.
South Africa requires democracy
The South African ruling party ANC in an official statement demands that
democratic reforms be implemented in Swaziland. The ANC also calls for the
release of political prisoners and the return of exiled Swaziland people.
Protests border the celebration of the monarchy
On April 12, the royal house celebrates the 40th anniversary of Swaziland's
transition to absolute monarchy. The opposition is trying to carry out protest
actions and spread flyers with regime criticism. The same thing happens on the
King's birthday on April 19. Many people are arrested and at least four people
are charged with rioting in connection with the protests. Among the defendants
is the union leader Wonder Mkhonza, who also holds a high position within