Photos
Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

In Photos: Swaziland's First Ever Pride March

This is what Swaziland's first ever pride march looked like.

Last week Saturday, the LGBTIQ+ community of The Kingdom of Eswatini (formerly The Kingdom of Swaziland) held their first ever pride march and celebration event.


The march, which was organized by the LGBTIQ+ organization Rock of Hope, commenced at the Prince of Wales Stadium in the country's capital city, Mbabane. It saw reputable names such as socialite Franky Dlamini, rapper C4, US Ambassador in Swaziland Lisa Peterson, among others, participating in the event's goings on.

At the stadium, there were food stalls and performances by artists from Swaziland, Mozambique and South Africa.

Even though, some Swazis, including the human rights group SWAGAA (Swaziland Action Group Against Abuse), weren't so happy with the march, it was still a success.

"It was such a success," said Melusi Simelane, a member of Rock of Hope, during the event, in an interview with OkayAfrica. "For the first time in Swaziland, holding pride, and for it to be such a success. We had important people marching with us, and the numbers were so amazing. We were still waiting for three more buses, but the police told us to start marching because of the city's rules."

But, knowing that the LGBTIQ+ community in the country still faces a lot of criticism and hatred, he knows this is only the beginning.

"I'm emotional," he said. "I'm filled with such anxiety because people are here having fun, but what's gonna happen to them afterwards? Are they gonna get home safe and when they wake up tomorrow, what's the world going to be like for them? Because they came here to show they support and opened up to the world, saying, 'here we are, we are human.' So I'm thinking after the success of this event, what happens next? Which says to me, 'more work to be done.'"

Below, are some photos from the event.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.


Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.


Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.


Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

All photography by Sabelo Mkhabela. He's lit on Instagram: @sabzamk

popular
Swiss. Photo by Sabelo Mkhabela.

Meet Swiss, The eSwatini Rapper You Need To Be Listening To

Get to know one of the most promising rappers from eSwatini (Swaziland).

In November of 2018, one of eSwatini's most notable rappers, 80 Script, was just being his usual confident and outspoken self when he tweeted about his long awaited debut album, That of Greatness. "I can't think of any rappers from my country that can top this album ... At least not for 5 years. I think this might be the greatest rap album from Eswatini," he wrote.

Swiss, a rapper not many fans knew about tweeted, "challenge accepted," in response to 80 Script's tweet. He promised he would hit the studio and respond to 80's claim the best way he knew—by rapping. Just a bit over 24 hours later, Swiss delivered a potent track titled "Leave it to the Fans" which took many fans by surprise. He came out pumping his chest with lines like, "Boy, you dried up like burnt toast, you ain't close to the god that I am/ Above you, I play host, I'm the ghost, I'm your G.O.A.T, I'm your idol/ How you tryna flex when you know that's my title?/ Took a couple of years doing dishes in the kitchen/ Now you tryna flex on a nigga with a vision."

"Leave it to Fans" may not be as scathing as great diss tracks usually are, but it revealed a rapper who's comfortable on the mic and who sounds like he means every word utters.

It was on.

Keep reading... Show less
popular

The Twelfth Wife of King Mswati III of eSwatini has Died

Nothando Dube, formally known as Inkhosikati LaDube, lost her battle with skin cancer.

The Kingdom of eSwatini (formerly known as Swaziland) is in mourning after the passing of King Mswati III's twelfth wife, Nothando Dube. Her death follows the tragic suicide of King Mswati III's eighth wife, Senteni Masango, last year.

Keep reading... Show less
News Brief
Photo by Seyllou/AFP via Getty Images

France Returns a 19th Century Sword Back to Senegal

The sword belonged to a Senegalese anti-colonial struggle fighter Omar Saidou Tall.

France has returned a 19th century sword back to Senegal. The sword belonged to Senegalese Islamic scholar and anti-colonial struggle fighter Omar Saidou Tall. The French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe recently handed over the sword to Senegal's President Macky Sall in a ceremony held in Dakar this past Sunday. The sword is now in the Museum of Black Civilizations of Dakar. The move comes after the Senegalese government's request for France to return more than 100 artifacts housed in French museums and France's President Emmanuel Macron subsequently commissioned a report entitled "The Restitution of African Cultural Heritage: Toward a New Relational Ethics".

Keep reading... Show less
popular
Photo by Dave Hogan/Getty Images

South Africa's Iconic Group Bongo Maffin is Set to Release a New Album

It will be the group's first album in well over a decade.

Last year, the iconic South African kwaito group Bongo Maffin, reunited after several years. They then went on to release the single "Harare" much to the delight of their numerous fans. Of course, the single was just an appetizer for everything else still to come. Thandiswa "King Tha" Mazwai, one of the members of the diverse quartet, recently confirmed that Bongo Maffin will be releasing an album on November 29th—the group's first album in well over a decade.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

news.

popular.