Monday, April 13, 2009

Mario Masuku on youtube

See a brief youtube video chip entitled:

Free Mario Masuku

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Over 14 Danish students barred from seeing Mario

Over 14 Danish students barred from seeing Mario
Swazi Times April 09,2009

MBABANE- Over 14 Danish college students who had hoped to visit jailed PUDEMO President Mario Masuku were yesterday denied access to him.

The students came to the country on Monday, but were told by prison officials that they needed to obtain permission from the Correctional Services headquarters and later their embassy in South Africa.

Relating what happened, Mette Madsen said they went to the Matsapha Maximum prison in the morning, but were first told that only three people were allowed to see the jailed PUDEMO President.

They were later told that they needed to have special permission from the headquarters. "We were told that we must not close space (by maximising the number of visitors) for Mario’s wife who normally comes here but we told them that we had already spoken to her and they changed the story to tell us that we needed to get permission from his lawyers. we told them that we had already alerted the lawyers, but we were told to go to the head office," Madsen said yesterday.

The group of students later met officials from the Correctional Services headquarters who told them to seek permission from their embassy.

The students were disappointed that they could not meet Masuku as they will be leaving on Saturday. They are now banking their hopes that their embassy responds before their departure.

The students said they wanted to meet Masuku and talk to him about his stay behind bars as well gather information about the state of human rights in Swaziland. They said they were particularly concerned about the situation in Swaziland because their country had, through the United Nations, funded the making of the Swaziland constitution.

"We want to take the information we get about Swaziland to other human rights organisations as well as media. We also believe that he is innocent until proven guilty and must be treated like that," said Madsen.

Correctional Services Public Relations Officer Nomkhosi Maseko yesterday confirmed that they told the students to get a letter from their embassy. She said this letter must give account of their names and must be addressed to the commissioner. She, however, said such a letter would not be a guarantee that they would see Masuku.