The Africa Report: 14 May

EWN's Africa correspondent, Jean-Jacques Cornish, reports on the day's top African news

King Mswati III at a SADC meeting in his kingdom in Swaziland.


In a historical move in the Kingdom of Swaziland, King Mswati III has made it illegal for those under the age of 18 to get married.

This decision has not been met with unanimous support says child rights group, Save the Children.

Swazi chiefs are arguing about the suitability of this new law saying that it was appropriate for Western-style marriages, but certainly not for traditional African unions, saying they should be allowed to marry whomever they like.

However, the international world clearly approves as this correlates with international law and will lessen the occurrence of young women being kidnapped and forced into marriage.

According to, Mswati III currently has 27 children from his first 13 wives and wives-to-be.

In 2001, Mswati invoked a chastity rite encouraging all young Swazi women to abstain from sexual relations, banning sexual relations for Swazis under 18 years of age from 9 September 2001 to 19 August 2005.

Two months after imposing the ban, he married a 17-year-old girl (according to tradition, he may only marry after his fiancé has fallen pregnant) who became his 13th wife.



Following a string of bombings in the Libyan city of Benghazi, yet another bomb went off, killing between four to ten civilians.

Officials are unable to provide a definitive death toll due to how bad bodies were blown up.

The car bomb went off outside a busy shopping centre, within the vicinity of Jalaa hospital.

It was clearly designed to do indiscriminate yet maximum damage to civilians.

The Prime Minister, Ali Zeidan, admitted that the government could not possibly do enough to get at militants, who are assumed to have carried out this act as nobody has claimed responsibility.

Benghazi was the cradle of the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi and the violent incidents that occurred there including the September 2012 murder of United States ambassador, Christopher Stevens, and three other diplomats.



In news from the troubled tropical island of Madagascar, their most famous DJ, Andry Rajoelina, has refused to withdraw from the upcoming Presidential elections.

The Southern African Development Community (SADC) had urged Rajoelina to remove himself from the candidacy list in the hope that this would ensure peace and stability.

At the recent World Economic Forum - Africa Summit, SADC advised Rajoelina to step down as his participation would cause trouble to wish Rajoelina declined, asking that the people of Madagascar decide.

Meanwhile, Rajoelina has refused participation of the man he overthrew in a military coup, Marc Ravalomanana, leading SADC to declare that the July elections would not be democratic.

SADC has since asked the United Nations and the African Union to supervise the elections.