Did Swaziland’s King Order Men To Marry Two or More Wives?
Swaziland Government’s spokesperson has denied that the King has made such statements.
Swaziland Government’s spokesperson has denied that the King has made such statements.(Photo: The Quint)

Did Swaziland’s King Order Men To Marry Two or More Wives?

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CLAIM

A newspaper clipping has gone viral on social media which claims that “स्वाजीलैंड के राजा मस्वाती तृतीय ने मबाबाने स्वाजीलैंड में घोषणा की है कि पुरुषों को जून 2019 से कम से कम दो या अधिक पत्नियों से शादी करनी पड़ेगी। ऐसा नहीं करने वाले को जेल में डाल दिया जाएगा।

(Translation: “King Mswati III of Swaziland has announced in Mababa, Swaziland that men will have to marry at least two or more wives from June 2019. The person who does not do this will be put in jail.”)

The news was reported by a daily newspaper circulated in central India, People’s Samachar and is available on their online website as well.

The clipping was shared extensively on Twitter and Facebook.

TRUE OR FALSE?

The claim made in the news clipping is false. Swaziland Government’s spokesperson has denied that the King has made such statements and called them “malicious.”

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WHAT WE FOUND OUT

People’s Samachar have stated in their article that it is based on a report made by the Zambian Observer. A keyword search of “Swaziland king” on Google led us to an article by the Zambian Observer which now states that Swaziland King Mswati has denied ordering men to marry more wives.

Updated version of the story.
Updated version of the story.
(Photo: Screenshot of Zambian Observer’s website)

However, this is an updated version of the story. The cached version of the site, from 14 May, 2019 shows their original story, which alleges that “king Mswati called for all men in the country to marry at least five wives and the government assured the men that it would pay for the marriage ceremonies and buy houses for them.” The article also states that the reason behind the order is the fact that the country has more women than men.

Original version of the story.&nbsp;
Original version of the story. 
(Photo: Screenshot of Zambian Observer’s website)

The Swaziland government’s spokesperson, Percy Simelane, called the reports “malicious” and “poisonous.” He denied that the king had made any such announcement and also appealed for “morality and responsible behavior by the journalists.”

He further order the newspaper to “retract this insult.”

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