PUDEMO Media Release, 5 May 2010
Killed for wearing his PUDEMO T-shirt
The royal security agents in Swaziland have done it again
We report with great grief to all our comrades both at home and internationally that Comrade Sipho Jele has died, as usual in the hands of the police. Cde Sipho was detained on Workers Day for wearing a PUDEMO t-shirt in Manzini. Subsequently, the police took him to his home in Ncabaneni looking for his membership card and returned with him to custody. On the following day, Tuesday morning the police officers returned to report to his grandmother that he has died by coomiting suicide while in custody. We know this is incorrect. A lot of people in Swaziland have died in the hands of the police and fictitious stories fabricated. And the police were ordering the old woman to bury the comrade on the same day, Tuesday.
Next they will bribe the poor family to fabricate a story on Sipho's death which shall be in favour of the regime and its killer security agents. If they fail, they shall threaten the old lady with a lot of fearful things including being evicted from her home area.
The Swaziland royal regime has always been giving the international community the wrong information that political dissenters are not imprisoned, harrassed and killed. And that Swaziland is a peaceful country. But here is a political activist getting killed for attending Workers Day and wearing a PUDEMO t-shirt. These are the same tactics that were used during apartheid South Africa to silence political activists. It is high time the international community, especially SADC genuinely take up the issue of Swaziland. How many innocent people must die before the regional leadership comes out openly to condemn the Swaziland regime and demand for democratization? Do we need to experience massive deaths like it is happening in other countries to get the international community to act?
Cde Sipho is a former worker at Usuthu Pulp. He was currently among the 2006 awaiting treason trialists. He was also in the process of furthering himself academically. PUDEMO and its Youth League have lost a hard working and committed comrade in Sipho. May his soul rest in peace! He has not died in vain, but for the freedom and liberation of our oppressed masses under the arrogant tinkhundla royal regime.
Head of Publicity
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