Eswatini: Trade unions global day of action

photo: TUCOSWA

Trade unions around the world are holding a global day of action to back the people of Eswatini in their demand for a democratic government.

On 6 August, letters will be sent to the Eswatini government supporting the protesters’ demands and to foreign governments explaining those demands and calling for urgent pressure on the Eswatini government. The letters can be downloaded here.

ITUC General Secretary, Sharan Burrow, said: “Firstly, the violence must stop, it must be properly investigated and the government must listen to the people and begin the journey to a democratic Eswatini.

“The pro-democracy campaign in Eswatini is not new, and sadly neither is the violent response. But this pattern will continue until the government formally commits to negotiating with the Eswatini trade unions, civil society and political parties to agree a roadmap to democracy. They must do this now, this demand for democracy by the people will not go away.”

The ITUC backs the demands of the Eswatini trade union movement:

  • An end to the ongoing intimidation, threats of arrest, raids, and brutal beatings of pro-democracy campaigners by all agents of the government.
  • The release of all protestors detained by the army and the police.
  • An independent, UN-supervised investigation into the violence, murders and detentions.
  • The unbanning of political parties as a first step to a negotiated, political settlement.
  • A signed formal commitment by the government to a negotiated political reform process with Eswatini trade unions, civil society and political parties.

The appalling state of human and trade union rights in Eswatini is set out in the ITUC Global Rights Index and in a report drafted to support a Commonwealth Trade Union Group campaign to suspend Eswatini from the Commonwealth.