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Swaziland

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First US-Africa summit short on press freedom, other human rights

CPJ board member Clarence Page, right, speaks  at a panel Wednesday organized by the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights in partnership with CPJ in Washington, D.C. (CPJ/Rachael Levy)

Top African and U.S. leaders are meeting next week in Washington in a first-of-its-kind summit focused on African development. But critics argue the summit is flawed in design, overlooking human rights such as freedom of expression and barring civil society actors from bilateral discussions.

Blog   |   Swaziland

Bheki Makhubu raises freedom flag in Swaziland

After high school, Bhekitemba Makhubu's father wanted him to study for a law degree. He refused, insisting on following in his father's footsteps as a journalist. Now, aged 43, he doesn't regret his choice, but besides his job as editor of the privately owned monthly magazine, The Nation, he is also studying for a law degree. On April 17, the Swaziland high court sentenced Bheki Makhubu, to two years imprisonment or a fine of US$20,000 for comments published in The Nation about the head of the country's supreme court. On a recent visit to Cape Town he spoke to CPJ about Swaziland's media environment, what motivates him, and the upcoming election. The interview has been edited for length.

May 31, 2013 10:30 AM ET

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Blog   |   Swaziland

In Swaziland, local press subdues royal sex scandal coverage

Local papers shied away from explaining the nature of the scandal around the minister.

An alleged sex scandal involving one of the wives of Africa's last absolute monarch, King Mswati III of Swaziland, has made worldwide headlines. Yet, in the southern African mountain kingdom, media coverage has been subdued, shying away from questioning the silence of the monarchy over the reports.

So, while City Press, a newspaper in neighboring South Africa, went as far as publishing an exclusive photo showing the alleged moment when married Swazi Justice and Constitutional Affairs Minister Ndumiso Mamba was caught in a hotel room with the Inkhosikati LaDube, King Mswati's 12th wife, both the government daily and leading independent newspaper Times of Swaziland barely reported that the minister was forced to resign following unspecified "allegations" about him. 

August 11, 2010 4:00 PM ET

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Blog   |   Swaziland

Swazi columnist criticizes king, gets fined ... in cows

About two weeks ago, traditional authorities in the mountain kingdom of Swaziland slapped the nation's most outspoken political columnist, Mfomfo Nkambule, with a fine--to be paid in cows--for criticism of the administration of King Mswati III, Africa's last absolute ruler. 

March 11, 2009 6:12 PM ET

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Blog   |   Swaziland

Swazi reporter gets apology amid allegations of sexism

This week in the mountain Kingdom of Swaziland, the state-owned daily Swazi Observer reported that an official has apologized for summarily dismissing a female reporter from Parliament nearly two weeks ago. It was the latest in a controversy sparked by allegations of gender discrimination against Mantoe Phakathi, an award-winning journalist with the private monthly The Nation.

February 19, 2009 4:10 PM ET

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