Boksburg post office robbery

Image via: Pexels

Criminal’s delight: Swaziland cops forced to “hitchhike or walk” to crimes scenes

While the country of Swaziland might have a new name, it doesn’t seem to have a new way of fighting crime and tracking down criminals.

Boksburg post office robbery

Image via: Pexels

Back in April, King Msawiti officially renamed Swaziland to “the kingdom of eSwatini” or eSwatini for short. Since then, things have not gone from “strength to strength”. Bordered by Mpumalanga, KwaZulu Natal and Mozambique, Swaziland is Africa’s last traditional Kingdom, with King Mswati III as the monarch.

Swazliand: eSwatini’s police facing nightmare

Police officers in eSwatini are forced to walk or hitchhike to accident scenes and even crime scenes, according to media reports from within the country. Why? We hear you ask? Well, government has reportedly not paid for petrol or for the vehicles to be repaired. As the vehicles got older, things got worse and worse.

Read: Over 100 visa-free travel destinations are now available to South Africans

A report from the Swazi Observer on Thursday claimed that criminals are living it up in some parts of the country (specifically in Siteki) as the biggest police station in the region currently had no working motor vehicles.

“Criminals are having a field day, especially in Siteki, as police at the biggest police station in the region have no motor vehicles to attend to reported crime scenes on time. Traffic officers are said to be currently using their personal vehicles to mount roadblocks,” the Observer writes.

With the financial crisis currently hampering government operations, police vehicles have been taken off of the road due to a fuel shortage on top of the vehicle issues.

There are currently only two vehicles available for use at Siteki. One is used for general patrol one by the Crime Investigation Department while the other is used by the traffic department.

The reports of a fuels shortage date as far back as July as the department and other emergency services were forced to halt.

Richard Rodney from Swazimedia reported on just how much the Swazi government owes.

“Swaziland is broke and as of June 30 owed a total of €12.9 billion, the equivalent of 20.8% of the kingdom’s GDP. Of that nearly €3 billion is owed to suppliers of goods and services.”

”On August 1 the Swazi government announced it had frozen all job hiring, promotions and creation of new posts because it was broke,” he added.

Can you imagine the scenes if South African criminals ever had free reign like that?