MBABANE: Sjava has withdrawn his highly anticipated performance at the Standard Bank Luju Festival, his Management confirmed to this Swaziland News.
The well-known South African artist pulled out of the Festival in solidarity with the people of eSwatini who are being killed by King Mswati's forces.
Reached for comments, Bonginkosi IB Dlamini, the Convenor of the United Eswatini Diaspora(UED) also confirmed the withdrawal and thanked Sjava for standing in solidarity with the people of eSwatini.
“We have received the confirmation that Sjava is standing with the oppressed people of Swaziland, so he is pulling out of the Luju Festival eSwatini. We would like to thank Sjava and his team and Vusi Leeuw,the President of the Music Association in South Africa. We also thank the Swaziland Solidarity Network(SSN), an organization we collaborated with when lobbying the musicians to pull out”, he said.
Reached for comments, Lucky Lukhele, the Spokesperson of the Swaziland Solidarity Network(SSN) welcomed the solidarity gesture from Sjava for standing with the people of Swaziland.
“Firstly, I would like to thank Sjava for this solidarity gesture without forgetting comrade Mzwakhe Mbuli whom we worked with holding several meetings and lobbying artists to stand in solidarity with the people”, he said.
Mvuselelo Fakudze, the Standard Bank Chief Executive had not responded at the time of compiling this report.
Eswatini is in the midst of a political crisis after King Mswati unleashed soldiers and the police to shoot protesting civilians merely for demanding democratic reforms.
Mswati rules eSwatini as an absolute Monarch, political parties are banned from participating in elections. The King appoints the Prime Minister, Cabinet Ministers, Judges, a majority of Senators and all members of the various Governing Councils.
Politically, the people are only allowed to elect Members of Parliament(MPs) but any MP who challenges Mswati is thrown behind bars.
On another note, Bonginkosi IB Dlamini, the United Eswatini Diaspora Convenor said they lobbied the South African artists to boycott the Festival because the Nation was still mourning the death of civilians who were allegedly killed by Mswati.