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Stand up for students in Swaziland

Wednesday 10 December 2008 Global Justice

NUS and ACTSA need your support for the people of Swaziland. We are calling on the British Government, the Commonwealth and the European Commission to publicly condemn the lack of democracy in Swaziland.

The land-locked Kingdom of Swaziland has a population of just 1.1 million. This small country is often overlooked despite having Africa’s longest running state of emergency of 35 years.

Take Action Now! - Write to the Swaziland High Commission to show your concern over the continued harassment of student activists and the closure of institutions of tertiary education in Swaziland.

Swaziland is sub-Saharan Africa's only absolute monarchy, King Mswati III rules over the population of just more than one million people by authoritarian means; political parties are banned, political and civic activists are imprisoned and brutalised, the judiciary, media and other authoritative bodies are controlled by the monarchy. The King has a personal fortune of over US $200 million while 69% of the people live below the poverty line of US $1 per day. Swaziland also has the highest HIV/AIDS prevalence rate in the world, currently 26.1%.

Susan Nash, Vice President (Society and Citizenship) says:  

"NUS represents the interests of over seven million students in further and higher education in the UK. NUS has a long and proud history of campaigning in solidarity with students across the globe. We stand in solidarity with the Swaziland National Union of Students as they bravely campaign for democracy and the right to a decent education. We welcome the launch of the Swaziland Democracy Campaign and wish it well as it draws the world's attention to the victimisation of students, trade unionists and others as they campaign for democracy and rights for the people of Swaziland.”

Find out more about Swaziland.