Search This Blog

Loading...

For more coverage follow us also on Twitter and Facebook


Showing posts with label Dlamini Bheki. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dlamini Bheki. Show all posts

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

DEMOCRAT ACQUITTED OF TERRORISM

Youth league President acquitted of terrorist charges in absolute monarchy
Kenworthy News Media 25 February 25, 2014
Bheki Dlamini, President of the Swaziland Youth Congress (SWAYOCO), the youth wing of Swaziland’s largest illegal political party PUDEMO, and former education and mobilizing officer of the Foundation for Socio Economic Justice, has been acquitted of charges of terrorism and released from prison today after a protracted trial that saw him spending over three years in prison, writes Kenworthy News Media.

Speaking to a crowd that had gathered at Sidwashini Prison, waiting for his release, Bheki said “me walking out of prison does not mean freedom. This was a small jail and I’m walking out to a bigger jail until we attain freedom. Comrades let’s go work.”

Whilst happy that Bheki had been released, one of his lawyers, Mary Da Silva, called it a “tragedy that Bheki has been robbed of so many years while he remained imprisoned for a crime he did not commit.” Bheki’s co-accused, Zonke Dlamini, was found guilty and will be sentenced on Friday (28 February 2014).

The state had charged Bheki (and Zonke) under the Swaziland Terrorism Act – an act that defines terrorism in very broad terms – for planting petrol bombs in police officers and MP’s houses between April and June 2010. SWAYOCO and the rest of the democratic movement were convinced of his innocence and had claimed all along that he was being framed.

Bheki was refused bail in 2010 because the state claimed that the trial would be swift, but the trial ended up taking well over three years, not least because of several dubious postponements. He went on a hunger strike in July 2013 to protest the many delays to his case.

Many other political prisoners like Bheki remain either imprisoned awaiting trial, where many of them are tortured, or on seemingly indefinite bail in Swaziland.

Bheki Dlamini for one maintains that he was tortured by the police in order to make him confess. “For over an hour, or even more, I would be suffocated by use of a rubber tube, plastic bag and surgical gloves. I was suffocated to the extent that I soiled myself and I was in no position to deny anything I was told to admit,” he said in 2010. Amnesty International also specifically mentioned Bheki Dlamini’s torture by the police in its 2011 annual report.

But Swaziland’s youth are adamant that they will continue to struggle until they have achieved democracy and socio-economic justice.  “Peace, justice and human dignity is what we seek. As we do so, we are prepared to face the consequences of speaking that we deserve to be in charge of our destiny,” SWAYOCO member Mcolisi Ngcamphalala said, commenting on the acquittal of his President.

Thursday, 14 February 2013

CAMPAIGN TO RELEASE STUDENT LEADER



Swazi youth congress demands release of political prisoners

Kenworthy News Media February 14, 2013


The Swaziland Youth Congress is to launch a campaign for the unconditional release of its President, Bheki Dlamini and other political prisoners on February 16, Kenworthy News Media reports.

Bheki Dlamini is charged under the Suppression of Terrorism Act with planting petrol bombs in police officers and MP’s houses, a charge that he, SWAYOCO and the democratic movement in Swaziland deny. He has been in jail since June 2010.

“We remain convinced that these comrades are innocent, if anything they are guilty of demanding sustainable jobs for the youth, education for all and the unbanning of political parties. Their resistance and refusal to betray the people in the face of continued harassment, intimidation, isolation and incarceration makes us to fight with more vigor and renewed energy for their release,” SWAYOCO said in a National Excecutive meeting statement released Wednesday.

As has been the claim of many other political prisoners in Swaziland, Bheki Dlamini says that he was tortured by the police in order to make him confess. “For over an hour, or even more, I would be suffocated by use of a rubber tube, plastic bag and surgical gloves. One officer carried a jar full of water that he spilt onto my face each time the suffocating tools were momentarily moved. I was suffocated to the extent that I soiled myself and I was in no position to deny anything I was told to admit,” Bheki Dlamini told the Times of Swaziland in 2010.

Swaziland ratified the United Nations Convention Against Torture in 2004. Nevertheless, there have been many subsequent reports of torture and mistreatment by Swaziland’s police. Amnesty International reported in 2011, that “severe beatings and suffocation torture” were “persistent forms of ill-treatment” in police custody in Swaziland.

Amnesty also specifically mentioned Bheki Dlamini’s torture by the police in its 2011 annual report. “The court was informed during the hearing that they [Bheki Dlamini and his co-accused  Zonke Dlamini] had been subjected to suffocation torture and other ill-treatment in police custody following their arrests.”

Monday, 8 August 2011

FREE SWAZI POLITICAL PRISONERS

Communist Party Swaziland

Statement

7 August 2011

THE BREAK CHAINS

Campaign for the release of all political prisoners and detainees in Swaziland

Release all political prisoners in Swaziland now!

The Tinkhundla regime of king Mswati III currently holds five political prisoners/detainees. These courageous freedom fighters are imprisoned by the regime simply because they have been part of the struggle for democracy, human rights and social and economic progress for the people of Swaziland. We demand their unconditional release and that this is a step toward the unbanning of all political parties and organisations and safe return of all exiles.

BREAK THE CHAINS demands the release of:

1. Amos Mbedze - A South African, member of the ANC, SACP, Umkhonto Wesizwe) arrested in 2008, denied bail; still on trial since 2010.

2. Bheki Dlamini - SWAYOCO PRESIDENT: arrested in 2010, denied bail, no trial.

3. Zonke Dlamini - SWAYOCO LEADER: arrested in 2010; denied bail, no trial since arrested.

4. Maxwell Dlamini - SNUS PRESIDENT: arrested in 2011; denied bail, no trial since arrest.

5. Musa Ngubeni – FORMER STUDENT LEADER: arrested in April 2011, denied bailed, no trial since arrest.

These activists and leaders have been routinely tortured and denied access to family and friends. Their health is deteriorating each day and they are denied proper medical assistance. They are held on trumped up charges because the regime considers their activism for democracy and freedom a danger to Mswati’s rule. The rule of law protects only the select few in Swaziland. Our comrades held prisoner by the regime have no rights.

The BREAK THE CHAINS campaign calls for the unconditional release of all political prisoners in Swaziland and for concerted action to prevent the incarceration of more detainees as the struggle for democracy and freedom increases.

The Swazi regime denies that it has political prisoners. It also denies that there are Swazi political exiles living outside the country. The regime lies continuously and blatantly in an effort to appear reasonable and fair. But the regime presides over the constant oppression of the Swazi people though enforced poverty and degradation and the denial of democratic, social and economic rights. Those who have campaigned against this vile injustice are persecuted by the Mswati regime.

BREAK THE CHAINS calls on all progressive organisations and individuals in Swaziland and beyond to add their voice to the demand the release of Swaziland’s political prisoners.

This must be a first step to the unbanning of all organizations and parties in Swaziland and firm guarantees on the right of the people to free assembly, and the guaranteed safe return of exiles.

Support BREAK THE CHAINS

We urge you to:

Send demands to the Swazi government and the king calling for the immediate release of Amos Mbedze, Bheki Dlamini, Zonke Dlamini, Maxwell Dlamini and Musa Ngubeni.

Raise awareness on the issue of Swaziland’s political prisoners by spreading news of the campaign for their release.

Raise the issue in your community, trade union branch, Church group, and among your neighbours and friends.

If you are outside Swaziland:

Issue calls to Swazi diplomatic missions for the release of political prisoners.

Demand the boycott of Swaziland by the government of the country in which you reside until all political prisoners are released.

Get your organisation / political party to join the campaign

The BREAK THE CHAINS campaign is being run by the Communist Party of Swaziland as an open campaign forum that all organisations and individuals are invited to join regardless of their political affiliation.

See also

MAXWELL DLAMINI ‘SUFFERS STROKE’

http://swazimedia.blogspot.com/2011/07/maxwell-dlamini-suffers-stroke.html

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

POLICE HARASS ACTIVIST GIRLFRIEND

Statement from the Swaziland Democracy Campaign

17 May 2011

BLOODY UNBELIEVABLE!!

At 2015hrs, this evening, Mary Pais Da Silva (Swaziland Democracy Campaign-Swaziland Chapter) received a phone call from a close friend of Bheki Dlamini (President of SWAYOCO currently incarcerated in jail on charges under the Suppression of Terrorism Act) informing her of the following:

The police have been harassing and intimidating the Bheki’s girlfriend.

She is now under threat of arrest for supposingly having knowledge of where Bheki has or had stashed the “bombs” that he used during the alleged bombing spree that he engaged in last year (2010) prior to his arrest.

As this statement is being prepared, there are reports that the police are on their way to her home to arrest her.

The only crime committed this young lady is being romantically involved with the President of a “proscribed entity”. Does this mean that pro-democracy activists are now not allowed to live a normal life? Does the Tinkhundla regime now want to dictate how we conduct our personal lives having failed to quell our fighting spirit in the struggle for democracy?

The SDC condemns this act of the police in the harshest terms and calls for the police to desist from the continued harassment of pro-democracy activists and their friends and family. We challenge to stop trying to use their divide and rule strategies: if they come for any one of our own, then they should come for all of us. We are ready to be housed in Mswati’s jail and fill them to the rafters.

Saturday, 14 May 2011

PICKET AGAINST SWAZI DETENTIONS



Statement from the Swaziland Democracy Campaign

13 May 2011

SOURCE

SDC Picket Protests Detentions and Puts Swazi Consul on the Spot! Actions Speak Louder than Words

On May 12th representatives of fifteen organisations gathered outside the Swazi Consular Office in Braamfontein Johannesburg to protest a number of burning issues face to face with Mr Magongo and Mr Tsabedze, the Consul and Deputy Consul respectively.

Three issues were raised directly with the representative of the Swazi Government. Firstly the chronic over-reaction of the Swazi Regime to the protests that took place in April, and in particular the unnecessary and brutal repression that was unleashed against legitimate peaceful protesters. The fact that the ILO and other world organisations have condemned the Swazi regime for their repressive actions has been further compounded by the behaviour of the Government in April. This has not served to undermine the democracy movement, but has strengthened the resolve of all those who want to see a democratic Swaziland.

Secondly, the illegal detention of young and courageous activists Comrades Maxwell Dlamini and Musa Ngubeni who were arrested during the April protests and who are being held on the flimsiest of evidence and denied bail. They face trumped up charges under the notorious Suppression of Terrorism Act, legislation that can only be described as draconian. Notice was also given of the detentions of other comrades in similar circumstances, namely Comrades Bheki and Zonke Dlamini. The SDC demanded the immediate dropping of all charges and the release of all those comrades detained.

Thirdly, that even though the Swazi Government had announced that they could not pay the May salaries of public sector workers they were still prepared to squander millions on sending a delegation of 50 to the UK Royal Wedding, and a delegation of 30 to a recent SACU meeting when most other governments sent three or four people. This underlies the absence of any rational prioritisation in economic matters, and has exposed the culture of wastage and personal wealth accumulation that typifies the regime.

Speakers from the African Diaspora, Global Zimbabwe Forum, PUDEMO , and COSATU also made similar and powerful points before the Consul replied that he would report these issues back to his superiors. Finally the Consul was informed that there would be very many more protests of this type and that the democracy movement was growing and that there would be no respite until Swaziland was a democracy.

We would like to thank all of those organisations who came and participated in the picket. Putting our words into practice and mobilising for democracy in Swaziland is one of the best ways that we can support our comrades in Swaziland. Passing resolutions, issuing press statements, circulating material on blogs and forums is all very well and important, but being prepared to actually do something speaks volumes. We urge all those who want to put their words into action to contact SDC for more information on future planned activities.