MBABANE:Taxpayers are expected to dig deeper in their pockets as more King Mswati’s daughters fall pregnant and the costs of raising their children are highly expected to come from government.
The daughters include Her Royal Highness Princess Tebukhosi,Tiyandza, Skhanyiso, the Communications Minister whose alleged controversial pregnancy sparked series of public debates after she took a ‘special leave’ from her Cabinet duties.
Reached for comments, Lusendvo Fakudze, the Ludzidzini Palace Governor said it has always been a norm that whenever a Princess fell pregnant before marriage, the child would be raised by the royal family, unless the father decides to pay the fine for impregnating the King’s daughter.
“Normally, the two families are supposed to meet and discuss the issue of the child and if the father of the child is vulnerable, then the royal family takes responsibility and maintain the kid. It becomes a different case if the father decides to pay the fines and take his child” said the Governor.
A questionnaire was sent to Minister Princess Skhanyiso, however, she did not respond at the time of compiling this report. The Communication Minster who is currently on ‘special leave’ was asked to explain if her alleged pregnancy does not mean taxpayers will have to fork out more money to maintain her child. She was also asked to explain what legal instrument was used to approve her leave and whether Parliament was involved or formally informed regarding her absence on public duties. But the Minister, through series of text messages, recently threatened this journalist warning him against publishing stories that touch on her and the royal family.
This publication could not ascertain the name of the man who allegedly impregnated Princess Skhanyiso, however more intimate pictures of her and a member of Umbutfo Eswatini Defense Force(UEDF) has been leaked to this publication.
But royal intelligence sources alleged that public resources were used to evict her ex-lover Mzwakhe Phiri after the King ordered that the relationship be terminated. On or around 17 September 2017, News 24, a South African Online publication reported that at the time, Phiri was trying to raise 50 cows that were to be presented to the King as a customary practice to marry the Princess.
But this publication can reveal that the basketball player’s dream of marrying the Princess allegedly ended after King’s security agents were ordered to make sure the relationship was terminated. An investigation by this publication revealed that, following the royal order, Phiri, who was accommodated at Fontein in Mbabane within rented flats owned by Princess Skhanyiso was subsequently evicted by the group of security agents.
“We were ordered by the King to remove Phiri at Skhanyiso’s flats, he was very angry. After that order, we used a truck from Correctional Services and drove straight to Fontein where we told him to load all his belongings, we later dumped him at his home in Hhohho. We were then ordered to conduct surveillance on Skhanyiso and make sure she does not visit Phiri” said the intelligence source.
Lucky Lukhele, the Spokesperson of the Swaziland Solidarity Network(SSN) said it was very unfortunate that royal family matters are directly linked to issues of governance because they are funded by taxpayers. He said with indications that the royal budget might continue going-up to feed even grandchildren of the King, workers must escalate their demand for a Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA).
“This thing of King’s children being maintained by the taxpayers must be stopped and we demand that civil servants must be given their COLA” said the SSN Spokesperson.
Princess Sikhanyiso whose child will maintained by taxpayers