Swazi king the first to break sex ban

Mbabane - A Swazi media production company says King Mswati III should be fined a cow for taking a new fiancee and breaching the chastity vows he has imposed on the country's young women.

Three weeks ago he picked 17-year-old Nontsetselelo Magongo as his latest fiancee. He already has one other fiancee and seven wives.

This came shortly after the royal household announced that it was reviving the Umchwasho chastity rite to preserve virginity and combat the spread of Aids.

The custom calls on young women not to have sex for five years and to wear woollen tassels in a "don't touch me" warning to men.

The production company Africa on Screen said on Wednesday that maidens should defy the custom in protest at the king's action. - Sapa

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