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Question of the Day
Anti-government protests have mushroomed over the past year amid deepening frustration among impoverished Swazis over a crippling financial crisis under the reign of King Mswati III.
The government obtained a last-minute court order prohibiting a march Wednesday, the first of four days of planned demonstrations.
“Nothing has changed, we are going ahead with tomorrow’s [Thursday’s] protests,” said Vincent Dlamini, secretary-general of the National Public Service and Allied Workers Union.
“Of course, we anticipate that the police will use their underhanded tactics, but we won’t back down.”
The protests commemorate a ban on political parties and suspension of the constitution that have allowed the king to rule by decree since 1973.
Police arrested two activists and set up roadblocks across the capital Mbabane and the commercial hub Manzini in anticipation of the demonstrations.
“We see this as an intimidating tactic meant to frustrate and destabilize tomorrow’s protests,” Mr. Dlamini said.
Body of ex-leader to come home Saturday
BLANTYRE — The body of Malawian President Bingu wa Mutharika will return Saturday from South Africa, where it was taken secretly to be embalmed, a Foreign Ministry official said Wednesday.
His body initially was expected to return Thursday, but the official, who did not want to be identified, said: “I can confirm that it is now Saturday.”
No reasons were given for the postponement.
Supporters will be able to view his body in Blantyre, the capital Lilongwe and the northern town of Mzuzu.
The burial will take place on April 23 in Thyolo district outside Blantyre.
By Michael P. Orsi
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