MBABANE: Wandile Dludlu, the Secretary General of the People’s United Democratic Movement(PUDEMO) says his organization supports the freedom of the media to enhance the ideals of a free and democratic society.
PUDEMO is eSwatini’s largest and main opposition party that has been advocating for democracy for the past thirty-eight years(38), like former South African Nelson Mandela, its founding President, the late Mario Masuku and others spent years in prison in the journey to a free and democratic society.
Speaking to this Swaziland News online radio on Wednesday, Dludlu said the media played an important role in promoting human rights including the freedom of speech to enable the people to hold those in power accountable.
“As PUDEMO, it is part of our founding principles to advocate for a free media and that the media must receive all the necessary support to operate in a free environment. The role of the media in the democratic society we are fighting for is fundamental to promote issues of development. It further educates, and inform, this forms part of the core mandate of the media. This will then help us as a Nation to fully exercise our rights as citizens of the country”, said the PUDEMO Secretary General.
Under King Mswati’s regime, the independent media has been under attack in eSwatini, journalists who are critical of the King and the government are persecuted and thrown behind bars.