What did the King of Swaziland do when he caught one of his 15 wives with his best friend? (6 photos)

21 March 2024

In the strange, landlocked African kingdom of Swaziland, subjects must ensure they do not disgrace their monarch. This rule also applies to the 15 wives of the king named Mswati III.

But despite all this, one of the king’s wives violated this rule and was “caught red-handed,” along with his best friend, who is the Minister of Justice of Swaziland.

How did the king himself respond to such humiliation?

Now we will tell you more about this in our new article:

First, let's briefly go over what kind of state this is.

King Sobuz II

At the start of the Second Boer War, Britain placed the small South African state of Swaziland under its direct jurisdiction as a protectorate.

In the late 1960s, the British hoped to create a parliamentary system with a constitutional monarchy in Swaziland. But the local tribal leader Sobuza II was against this idea. He and several of his prominent supporters formed a political party, the Imbokodwo National Movement. On September 6, 1968, Swaziland became independent.

Over the next few years, Sobhuza II proclaimed himself king, created and equipped a private secret army, and then, with the support of his private militia, abolished the constitution and dissolved parliament.

Since then, he had absolute power in Swaziland, which he crushed under himself. He carried out many social reforms, thanks to which he only strengthened his influence in the state. For example, Sobuza II was an ardent supporter of polygamy. And at the height of his reign, he reportedly had no fewer than 70 wives, approximately 210 children, and over 1,000 grandchildren.

After Sobuza's death in 1986, his 18-year-old son Mswati III became the new king, who still rules Swaziland (now Eswatini) as an absolute monarch. The last of its kind in Africa.

Mswati III has gained a terrible reputation among the people

King Mswati III

Since this king was never elected by the people, never worked anywhere, but inherited absolute power, and later declared that he owns Eswatini and everything in the country, many citizens do not like him.

Moreover, Mswati created the so-called national welfare fund, where every resident of the state had to donate money, and which was personally managed by King Mswati.

And of course, Mswati followed the tradition of his father and actively promoted polygamy, pointing out that the women in his kingdom also “belonged to him,” for which he was often criticized and accused of kidnappings.

Wives and children of King Mswati

Today the 50-year-old king has 15 wives and 23 children. But a few years ago, a real scandal happened with his 12th wife, 23-year-old Inkhosikati LaDube.

The South African Eswatini press quoted a palace source:

“For many months, the inkhosikati (queen) secretly dressed up in army uniform whenever the king was not around.

Dressed in an officer's uniform, Queen LaDubé approached the gate, where a government car was already waiting for her, which picked her up and took her to the luxurious RoyalVilla hotel, 10 km west of the palace.

The man with whom the 12th queen had a secret affair turned out to be none other than Eswatini's Minister of Justice and childhood friend of the king, Ndumiso Mamba, who had held this post since 2008.

After the king learned about what had happened, his friend was arrested during a police operation at the hotel, during another meeting with the queen.

What happened after?

(Left in photo) Eswatini's Minister of Justice and close friend of the King, Ndumiso Mamba. (Right in photo) 12th wife of the King and former model LaDube

The Queen went to international media with stories of being kicked out of the palace, but was later let back in by the King and kept her locked up for several years with several guards.

Some time later, the king's 12th wife died under unexplained circumstances and was buried on the mountain according to royal funeral rites.

Ndumiso Mamba was much luckier. Initially, the king and his bodyguards took the minister to prison, where he was beaten for a long timeand they deprived him of his teeth. Then the king demanded from his government the death penalty for the minister for entering the king’s private property (the RoyalVilla hotel belonged to the king). For such a violation in Swaziland (Eswatini) there really is such a severe punishment.

But due to pressure from Great Britain and some other European countries, this punishment had to be canceled. Although the state of Eswatini (formerly Swaziland) is a de facto independent state, it is very much oriented towards the “wishes of its friends” from abroad. King Mswati III himself was even the guest of honor at the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton.

Mswati with his wife at the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton

If Mamba had been charged, convicted and executed, the king would have suffered too much political damage, given his unpopularity among the people and frequent attempts at rebellion. Therefore, after a few months of imprisonment, Ndumiso Mamba was fired from his post and deprived of all his money.

Some journalists wrote that currently the former Minister of Justice of Eswatini lives in poverty and is among the 70% of the population of this state living below the poverty line.

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