Swaziland - Rise to power

Prince Makhosetive faced a number of challenges between the time of his selection in 1982 and his installation as King Mswati III in 1986. In the four years prior to his installation, the country was ruled by a number of regents. Queen Dzeliwe, one of Sobhuza's 50 wives, was the first to rule Swaziland after the king's death. After she refused the Liqoqo's request to remove Prince Mabandla Dlamini as prime minister, Queen Dzeliwe was removed as regent in August 1983. A new regent, Queen Ntombi, mother of the soon-to-be king, was chosen, and Prince Makhosetive was then presented to the nation. In 1984, the Liqoqo attempted to purge itself of a number of opponents, including the head of Makhosetive's lineage, Prince Mfanasibili. Queen Ntombi and a number of cabinet ministers repudiated these purges, and the heads of the army and police were dismissed. Mfanasibili, however, was at the center of the struggle for power in the Liqoqo and only when he was arrested was the attempt to maintain the Liqoqo's supremacy thwarted. This move restored governmental power to the prime minister and cabinet, and permitted Prince Makhosetive's coronation on 25 April 1986 at the age of 18.

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