Photo by RODGER BOSCH / AFP via Getty Images

Mokgweetsi Eric Keabetswe Masisi (L), President of Botswana, listens as Mandulo Ambrose Dlamini (R), Prime Minister of Eswatini, speaks at a plenary session of African Leaders at the World Economic Forum (WEF) Africa meeting at the Cape Town International Convention Centre on September 5, 2019, in Cape Town.

eSwatini Prime Minister Ambrose Mandvulo Dlamini Dies

eSwatini Prime Minister Ambrose Mandvulo Dlamini has reportedly passed away after contracting COVID-19 four weeks ago.

eSwatini Prime Minister Ambrose Dlamini has reportedly died following a month long battle with COVID-19, this according to Al Jazeera. eSwatini government released a statement on Sunday confirming Dlamini's death who reportedly died in a South African hospital. Dlamini had been under medical care after he was diagnosed with COVID-19 on the 16th of November. eSwatini Deputy Prime Minister Themba Masuku called his death "untimely" in a public statement released this past Sunday evening.

Read: The The Twelfth Wife of King Mswati III of eSwatini has Died

According to News24, Dlamini was moved to South Africa for medical care on the 1st of December. Dlamini was reportedly undergoing treatment and responding well. Times of Swaziland reports that 52-year-old Dlamini was transferred to South Africa for better medical care after spending a week in ICU at Mbabane Government Hospital. Masuku was hopeful that the transfer would assist Dlamini's recovery. Dlamini had developed water in his lungs at the time of his death and passed away although the water was surgically drained. The official cause of death has not been released though some news outlets claim COVID-19 complications.

Additionally Yahoo, SABC and Al Jazeera caused controversy around Dlamini's death after publishing a photograph of Botswana's President Mokgweetsi Masisi and misidentified him as Dlamini. Al Jazeera later rectified the error after receiving backlash.

Dlamini was selected Prime Minister of eSswatini in October 2018 by King Mswati III. He was an economist with a masters degree from the USA and was CEO of telecoms giant eSwatini MTN. According to Times of Swaziland, he earned more as CEO at eSwatini MTN than the kingdom's prime minister. He was set to head Botswana MTN before King Mswati III recruited him.

eSwatini's economy and public health sector are admittedly lacking resources; almost half the population lives in poverty. Dlamini had drastic fiscal plans for government including government cabinet members flying economy class. His death brings an abrupt end to the economic plans for the last remaining monarch in Africa. eSwatini is infamous for the royal family's lavish living despite governing a very poor population. Conversely, government officials have limited power because of the monarchy's rule.

Formerly known as Swaziland, eSwatini has a reported population of just 1.2 million people. According to BBC news, 6768 coronavirus cases have been reported with 127 deaths. Dlamini was asymptomatic and feeling relatively well when he announced his COVID-19 diagnosis.


A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

We talk to the Nigerian stars about the hardest lessons they've learned, best advice they've ever been given and what Nigeria means to them.

Olamide and Fireboy DML have been working together for three years, but the first time they sit down to do an interview together is hours after they arrive in New York City on a promo tour.

It's Fireboy's first time in the Big Apple — and in the US — and the rain that's pouring outside his hotel doesn't hinder his gratitude. "It's such a relief to be here, it's long overdue," he tells OkayAfrica. "I was supposed to be here last year, but Covid stopped that. This is a time to reflect and refresh. It's a reset button for me."

Olamide looks on, smiling assuredly. Since signing Fireboy to his YBNL Nation label in 2018, he's watched the soulful young singer rise to become one of Nigeria's most talked-about artists — from his breakout single, "Jealous," to his debut album Laughter, Tears & Goosebumps, hit collabs with D.Smoke and Cuppy, and his sophomore release, Apollo, last year.

Even while he shares his own latest record, UY Scuti, with the world, Olamide nurtures Fireboy's career with as much care and attention as he does his own, oscillating between his two roles of artist and label exec seamlessly. His 2020 album Carpe Diem is the most streamed album ever by an African rap artist, according to Audiomack, hitting over 140 million streams. When Olamide signed a joint venture with US-based record label and distribution company, Empire, in February last year he did so through his label, bringing Fireboy and any other artist he decides to sign along for the ride, and establishing one of the most noteworthy deals on the continent.

Below, Olamide & Fireboy DML speak to OkayAfrica about their mutual admiration for each other, what makes them get up in the morning and how they switch off.

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