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MBABANE – Outgoing Senator Mkhululi Dlamini says, in terms of the law, he qualifies to participate in the general elections.

Dlamini insisted that he was a resident of Maphilingo under Siphofaneni Inkhundla. In his response to the Elections and Boundaries Commission (EBC), Dlamini stated that he was a resident of the area, having built a house there in June 2022. He told the EBC that he acquired the land on which he built his house in February of the same year.

Regarding the nomination objection by voters, Dlamini explained that his registration was not objected to. “It was one man who felt that my election would hinder the success of his preferred candidate. That stopped my nomination, even though I was legitimate on the voters roll. I understand that Babe M**** has a right to vote for whoever he wishes.  I, however, plead with the EBC to also allow me to benefit from my right to vote or be voted for,” Dlamini said.


The outgoing senator was also accused of having homesteads in various places and not being a resident of Maphilingo, where he has registered to vote. His explanation was that it was true that he had residences under Khubuta, Ludzeludze, Hhukwini and Siphofaneni constituencies. “But I don’t believe that such should be grounds for not allowing me to participate in any of these tinkhundla centres,” he said.

Dlamini mentioned that he resided on a farm at Maphilingo Umphakatsi. He alleged that he was involved in a number of activities in the umphakatsi, among them being assisting the disadvantaged, supporting sporting activities and youth businesses. He alleged that he met on Babe Shongwe, who allegedly agreed that he should have a structure on the farm ‘and he is now my mphatsi sigodzi’. He said it was true that he qualifies to be registered under Hhukwini Inkhundla. However, he said according to the Elections Act of 2023 he qualifies to be registered under Khubuta, Ludzeludze and Siphofaneni tinkhundla.

“I am a bona fide member of all these communities. I kindly request that the EBC allow me to exercise my democratic right to participate in the 2023 General Elections under the inkhudla that I believe I would assist in the best way. I qualify in all the areas that I mentioned above, but I believe that because of my background, both educational and professional, working with the people of Siphofaneni makes more sense. “I pledge my full cooperation with the EBC, but my humble request remains that the EBC allows me to benefit from my right to participate in the 2023 General Elections as authorised by the Constitution,” said Dlamini.

The EBC removed Dlamini from the voters roll of Maphilingo. His removal came after an objection to his nomination under Maphilingo Umphakatsi.
In a letter the commission wrote to the outgoing senator, he was informed that the commission received an objection to the inclusion of his name in the voters register under Siphofaneni Inkhundla in terms of Section 18 of the Voters Registration Act No.8 of 2013. The objection, according to the EBC, was on the basis that Dlamini was not a resident of the area at which he registered. He was informed that, in line with Section 18(3) of the Act, the commission was empowered to review registration objection from voters.   


In the letter dated July 22, 2023, the EBC stated that on receipt of the objection, it made a fact-finding from Dlamini and other sources and it discovered that he had homes in various other places as mentioned by him. “We also gathered that you were not formally introduced to the Maphilingo Umphakatsi. To reach the determination of the matter, the commission considered whether you qualify in terms of the Voters Registration Act, which clearly  outlines the ultimate qualification (s) for registration of a voter in that inkhundla or polling division,” reads part of the two-page letter. The EBC then determined that Dlamini qualified to be registered under LaMgabhi Etiyeni Umphakatsi, under Hhukwini Inkhundla. He was informed that, consequently, his name would be removed from Othandweni Primary School Polling Station, Maphilingo Umphakatsi, under Siphofaneni Inkundla.