In celebration of their independence, Swaziland will revert to its original name, BBC reports. King Mswati III, the monarch of the country dubbed it “the Kingdom of eSwatini” on Wednesday (Apr. 18) at a celebration of the country’s 50th year since secession from the British Empire.
Like other African nations, Swaziland was a British colony. The small nation was under the empire’s rule for 68 years before gaining sovereignty in 1968. However, the country held on to the name given to them. “African countries on getting independence reverted to their ancient names before they were colonized. So from now on the country will be officially known as the Kingdom of eSwatini,” Mswati announced.
The event was held at a stadium in Manzini, celebrating both liberty and the king’s 50th birthday. He had been referring to Swaziland as eSwatini for years before calling it official earlier this week. However, the citizens of eSwatini are not impressed. In fact, they were angered by the new spectacle.
Nomsa Maseko, the BBC Southern Africa Correspondent, said that the announcement was just that. Residents are more worried about the “nation’s sluggish economy.”
eSwatini (née Swaziland) is Africa’s last monarchy. Political parties are banned and an entry into politics is merely considered after a politician runs independently.