Monday, August 29, 2005

Young rowdies alert!

Report: Swazi princess whipped for loud music:
EZULWINI VALLEY, Swaziland -- The king of Swaziland's daughter was whipped by a palace official at a party of teenage virgins ahead of a festival where more than 50,000 maidens are available to become her father's 13th wife, media said on Sunday.

Princess Sikhanyiso, 17, told the Times of Swaziland a palace official whipped girls, including beauty queen Miss Swaziland, at the party as a punishment after they refused to turn down the music. She was pictured showing her bruises.

Thousands of bare-breasted virgins will dance for Africa's last absolute monarch in Monday's Reed Dance ceremony, which King Mswati III has used to choose new brides.

Critics say the ancient ceremony, meant to celebrate womanhood and virginity, has become little more than a shop window for the 37-year-old king to choose young brides.
Hmmm, shopping!
Thousands of girls, some swathed in drapes bearing the king's image and some in beaded mini skirts, streamed into the royal compound on Sunday singing songs and carrying towering reeds to present to the Queen Mother -- also known as the Great She Elephant.
Now that's a homey touch.
The girls -- who must be virgins and older than 13 -- were flanked by male supervisors dressed in animal-skin loin cloths with traditional porcupine quills in their hair.
That's nice too!
Mswati has courted controversy for his lavish lifestyle while two thirds of his subjects live in abject poverty. Critics say he sets a bad example by encouraging polygamy and teenage sex in a country where 40 percent of adults live with HIV.
No to worry, all of Mswati's brides are rigorously checked before the er, knot is tied.

You can also check out the Times of Swaziland version if you can wait out the the slow link. Aside from semiclothed snaps of the princess, there's:
Princess Sikhanyiso was among the maidens that were given accommodation at Mfumbaneni poultry at Mphisi farm while the rest of the thousands of maidens were housed in tents at Mphisi cattle breeding station, situated about 500 meters away from Mfumbaneni.
Rather apt.
The princess shared a room with selected maidens including other maidens from the royal family.

A few metres away from their room were another group of maidens, most from Ludzidzini royal kraal.

Witnesses told this newspaper that hell broke loose when Dlamini (Ntfonjeni) arrived after having been called by police officers who had become concerned with noise coming from where the Princesses were accommodated.

Ntfonjeni responded promptly and on arrival, he found a lively party going on with some maidens displaying their dancing skills outside the room.

Entry to the party, a witness said, was only assured if a maiden had a mini skirt.

One of the songs of the night was South African Afro-pop groups Nisixoshelani (a song about party poopers), which some of the girls danced to, just before the traditional and uncompromising Dlamini pounced on them.
You know, it's almost like an H. Rider Haggard novel. Except they get a vote at the United Nations.