Tuesday, August 30, 2005

King for a Day (or More..)

The King of Swaziland, King Mswati III (the last absolute monarch in the world), held the annual ceremony yesterday to chose his next wife - he has married eleven so far, has 27 children and also has three women in line for marriage. So his next wife will be his 15th. Some 50,000 topless teenage and young women danced for him trying to catch his eye.

His father, King Sobhuza II, had more than seventy wives when he died in 1982.

I cant help but think that this is a lot of mother in laws. The way the marriage arrangement goes now, that's a lot of stagettes, stag nights, showers and room rentals too. They must do things differently in Africa.

There is a bit of a fuss about all of this. The King lives in luxury, each of his Queens has been given a Royal Palace and a decent BMW and is kept well. Meanwhile, the country is poverty stricken - 40% unemployment and 70% live on less than $1US a day.

Worse, at least according to some commentators, the King has forsworn democracy - rejecting a constitution which would have made him a constitutional monarch rather than an absolute ruler - as well as ejecting the speaker from the Parliament.

The King was educated in Britain, I guess he learned all about this when he studied the British civil war, Cromwell and all of that.

It is interesting that we continue to have a feudal society in the twenty first century. Where is the UN when you need them ?

1 comment:

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