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Swaziland Old History

 

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 agriculture.

  • AbbreviationFinder.org: 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 Swaziland.

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.

Old History of Swaziland

2013

December

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 opinion.

November

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.

October

New Prime Minister

King Mswati III reappointed relative Barnabas Sibusiso Dlamini as prime minister.

September

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.

August

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 candidates.

June

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.

May

Foreign exchange reserves are shrinking

The central bank warns that the country's foreign exchange reserves are now critically small.

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.

April

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 Pudemo.

 
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