Maxwell Dlamini, one of the main organisers behind national protests due to begin tomorrow is missing. So are 3 other youth leaders – while another is on the run, fearing for his life.
Dlamini, who is president of the Swaziland National Union of Students (that’s him above addressing the crowd on March 18th calling for the Prime Minister’s resignation) was on his way back from the border last night. He had gone to South Africa to help plan the demonstrations since organisers did not feel safe doing so in Swaziland.
He was last seen at a police roadblock very near our place in Mbabane last night. Amongst the others who have gone missing are the deputy president of the banned PUDEMO youth organisation, SWAYOCO – Sifiso Mabuza, (who told me in March being arrested is part of his job and he is used to it. He said, “We are saying to people of Swaziland they must get ready. They can’t keep getting crushed by police then they go home and keep quiet”.
Mcolisi Ngcamphalana, SWAYOCO’s national organiser believes he is public enemy number one. Maybe his is paranoid – you would be too if you’d been held and tortured as he says he was for 24 hours last week – but he says police believe his is the one behind the “faceless” national uprising. He says he is not, he simply supports it. He has been on the run since last week but his little brother was picked up in a case of mistaken identity.