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Ensure the safety of pro-democracy police officers and provide compensation.

Friday, 12th August, 2022

The next democratic government must ensure the safety of pro-democracy police officers and give a clear directive regarding their role in the liberation movement.

Police officers were trained to take orders and in the midst of the political crisis, the pro-democracy movement must develop a clear framework stipulating the chain of command regarding the role of pro-democracy police officers during the looming mass protests.

It should be noted that most police officers have no alternative jobs and most of them need assurance about their future.

Political leaders must address this issue because some police officers were misled by their superiors into believing that in the new democratic government, all of them will lose their jobs.

Those who wish to side with the people and push the struggle must be assured of their job security in the new government or, alternatively, compensation for those who resign or get fired by this cruel and oppressive regime.

In this context, a secret official register of pro-democracy officers must be developed and their safety must be prioritised because some of them play a critical role in providing information to the movement.

This publication would not have reached this level of popularity without the assistance of police sources.

As a journalist, I would be failing in my job if I don’t talk about how to keep my sources safe, ensure and advocate for their job security.

Most security officers are frustrated and desire freedom so they can earn better salaries. 

Those who aspire to lead this country must always address this issue and give the officers a picture of their economic freedom in the new Swaziland.

I do not condone the shooting and killing of police officers, but those responsible must come up with solutions to this conflict and tell the officers where they went wrong and what could be done to correct the atrocities.

Police officers are underpaid and some of them are only supporting King Mswati not because they took an oath, they lack alternative sources of income.

I am not saying the self-defense mechanism by the people against officers who killed civilians must stop, self-defense is a human right, and the power to stop this is vested upon the police officers.

They must down their firearms and behave like officers of the law, not Mswati’s henchmen or tinkabi.

Pro-democracy police officers can choose to use the least amount of force against other officers who kill civilians, arrest them to maintain peace, law and order.

This is because officers who keep shooting civilians contribute to a culture of violence that will affect all police officers.

Sources are the pillars of the independent media, and many officers assisted this publication in publishing exclusive and investigative stories that shaped the country’s political landscape.

It is, therefore, my responsibility to strike a balance between the welfare of police officers and the freedom of the citizens who are being oppressed by certain elements within the police force.

As stated earlier, police officers play a significant role in our society, they are not King Mswati’s property and we need to assist them to understand their significant mandate.

We urge officers to side with the people and promote democracy, this will liberate them from the slavery perpetrated by royal supremacy.

On the other hand, we urge those political leaders who aspire to lead this country to always show leadership that will also accommodate police officers since their role in the struggle for liberation is fundamental.

As the situation stands, the police force is headed by King Mswati, a Commander-in-Chief who, throughout his speech during the Police Day, failed to address the issue of low salaries for police officers but encouraged them to be loyal even on an empty stomach.

Indirectly, Mswati owns money-lending companies such as Select Management Services (SMS), he pays police officers low salaries and robs them through these companies.

Furthermore, the King demands a contribution to host a Police Day from these financially struggling officers, it is the government of the day that should be hosting and funding these events. 

How can you deduct monies from police officers through Pay as You Earn(PAYE), rob them through money-lending companies and subsequently demand contributions for a Police Day where a multi-billionaire King would be a Guest Speaker?

The taxes deducted from the salaries of these police officers should be used to host a Police Day and further construct decent houses for these officers of the law.

We hope one day, police officers will recognize the fact that they are saluting or guarding a monster and once they do, they will attain freedom both politically, socially and economically.

Cops have lost their dignity even among the society, some no longer afford to take care and provide for their families because this government ensures that they remain broke so that they can be loyal.

In the midst of these challenges, police officers need to understand that their financial freedom is tied to the political mission to liberate our country.

Ensure the safety of pro-democracy police officers and provide compensation.
King Mswati during the police day.