Swazi princess beaten by government official for wild party

Saturday, September 3, 2005

Ntfonjeni Dlamini, the government's official overseer of traditional affairs, beat one of the princesses of Swaziland.

A daughter of HM King Mswati III, 17-year-old Princess Sikhanyiso was throwing a party with loud music and alcohol. The party was to celebrate the end of the chastity decree.

"It was within the traditional overseer's right to discipline anyone — including princesses — who wanted to spoil the important [Reed Dance] ceremony," claimed Jim Gama, governor of the queen mother's residence. The Reed Dance ceremony is an annual ritual in the culture.

Princess Sikhanyiso had already caused ire around Swaziland, as she broke traditions by wearing Western-style short skirts and jeans.