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    World Affairs
  • Published
    17th Dec, 2020


  • Swaziland had changed its name to Eswatini, which is culturally significant.

Why it had changed its name?

  • In April 2018, Swaziland was renamed the country as ‘the Kingdom of eSwatini’.
  • The announcement for the name change occurred during celebrations for 50 years of Swazi independence from British rule.
  • Eswatini means ‘land of the Swazis’ in Swazi language and was an extant name given how King Mswati III had always referred to the country by this name.
  • The most prominent use of this name occured when the King referred to the country as ‘Eswatini’ during his address at the UN General Assembly in 2017 and earlier in 2014, during the state opening of the parliament in the country.

Why does country want to change its name?

  • Political factors
  • desire to shed the traces of its brutal colonial past
  • to foster a sense of national pride and identity

The other African countries which got their names changed?

  • Nyasaland in central Africa was renamed Malawi
  • Bechuanaland became the Republic of Botswana in 1966
  • The Republic of Upper Volta was renamed Burkina Faso
  • Gold Coast became Ghana 

About Eswatini

  • It is Africa’s last remaining absolute monarchy. 
  • It is a landlocked country in Southern Africa.
  • It is bordered by Mozambique to its northeast and South Africa to its north, west, and south.
  • Eswatini has the world’s highest prevalence rate for HIV/Aids with low life expectancy for both men and women.
  • There are severe curbs on political parties and freedom of speech and issues such as discrimination towards girls and women is widespread.

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