Lawyer stands up to Swazi court

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IOL pic may14 justice scales file Independent Newspapers .

Mbabane - By calling for the prosecution of Swaziland’s Chief Justice Michael Ramodibedi from the witness box of his contempt of court trial this week, human rights lawyer Thulani Maseko may have given King Mswati’s government cause to level the charge of treason against him.

“I am neither a fan nor supporter of the constitution which itself is inconsistent with the Rule of Law, and is not a true reflection of the genuine aspirations of the people of Swaziland. It was forcefully imposed,” Maseko said in a statement he read in court on Wednesday, entitled, “The failure of leadership in Swaziland; the people are treated with contempt”.

Chief Justice Ramodibedi stopped the hearing on Wednesday because of Maseko’s statement. When the trial resumed on Thursday morning, Director of Public Prosecutions Nkhosinati Maseko submitted an application for the removal of Maseko’s statement from the trial record.

However, Maseko, clad in traditional Zulu warrior headgear, had already managed to read the part of his statement in which he accused Swaziland’s courts of committing treason by following the dictates of the country’s king. – Independent Foreign Service

The Mercury

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