chapter  4
17 Pages

Rival forms of policing and politics in urban Swaziland

WithHelene Maria Kyed

This chapter focuses on community policing in urban Swaziland is not only subject to the different political strategies of others, but is also a space where political dreams and alternative politics develop as its members gain recognition from order-making activities. Citizen involvement in policing became a significant issue again in the late 1980s, due to a crime wave that was caused by rising unemployment and the influx of refugees from warring Mozambique and apartheid South Africa. The criminalisation of the Senator points to the politically ambiguous relationship between state and community police. The contentious legal process and the fights over its origin reflects how community policing as both a policy concept and as the name used by civilian policing actors has become a politically significant matter in Swaziland. The political instrumentalisation of the community police members strengthened the political significance and independence of the community police in Mbhuleni as an emerging authority in its own right.