Multi Grammy Award winner Superstar Erykah Badu made a surprise appearance at His Majesty King Mswati III’s garden party on Thursday held at the Mavuso Centre in Manzini.
She was brought to the country courtesy of Jacob Arabo, commonly known as Jacob the Jeweller as a gift to His Majesty for his 46th birthday. Badu was first spotted amongst the crowd and was met with excitement as she mingled and even took a trip to the bathroom. People whispered amongst themselves wondering if it was indeed her or a look alike, although her name was listed under the main entertainers of the night on the programme.
After she was introduced to the stage, she expressed how happy she was to be in the country to perform before Their Majesties. She had guests in stitches when she said the first time she was in the country in 2002 there were a number of women who were dancing in a ‘forest’. “I am so happy to be in the country, this is my second time in Swaziland and the last time I was here there were a lot of women dancing in a forest. I love being in Swaziland. I dedicate this first song to sons of Kings,” she said before performing.
Between her performance she also commented on His Majesty’s family, saying it looked like a healthy family and was an inspiration to everyone to maintain good relationships within their families.
Badu also sang happy birthday to His Majesty as he was about to cut the cake. Erykah Badu, born Erykah Abi Wright is an American songwriter, record producer, activist who has won a number of awards and been at the top of music charts. She later joined several guests who went to the Lozitha Royal Palace to present His Majesty King Mswati III with birthday gifts. She presented him with a 100 dollar (US) bill and a special stone which she said would uplift His Majesty’s spirits when he was feeling down.
“Whenever you feel alone this stone will uplift your spirits Your Majesty,” said. Arabo, who brought Badu into the country also presented His Majesty with a custom made watch designed by his company in the United States. He is the founder of Jacob &Co branded Jewellery and his watches are worn by internationally acclaimed celebrities such as American rapper Jay Z.
His Majesty, who was evidently pleased with the gift said he was grateful for the watch that had a tiger on it. “I will be like a tiger,” the King said on a light note.
King asks for copy of Badu’s album
His Majesty King Mswati III requested an album from American artist Erykah Badu after her performance.
This was at Lozitha Palace, where the artist met His Majesty after she had performed at the Mavuso Centre.
After she presented her gifts to His Majesty, he asked her if she had a copy of her album with the songs she had just performed.
She told His Majesty that she was unsure if there was one with her but if she did not have one she would send it from the United States.
Badu was one of the many international entertainers lined up for the event.
Others include a band from Taiwan, Navy Capt Tsao Wei-Chi, an Egyptian group Tanora.
The magician kept the crowd on their toes as he constantly used princes and princesses for demonstration of some of his tricks.
African leaders should learn from King Mswati III – Zulu King
Zulu King Zwelithini says African leaders should learn from King Mswati III’s determination and leadership.
He said His Majesty had shown true leadership skills by standing firm on his decision of the construction of the newly launched airport, King Mswati III International Airport as it was going to benefit many Swazis.
“Earlier on you were speaking of the international airport and how far the construction of it has come. The spirit and determination you showed on that has portrayed true leadership. It is important to stand firm on a decision as a leader if it is a decision that is mean to benefit your country and people. African leaders should be encouraged by such leadership and not only take decisions to please friends,” he said,
The Zulu King also said His Majesty’s birthday was no longer a special celebration was meant to be observed in the country only, but was now a part of the African Heritage. He then proposed a toast to His Majesty.
“I would like to proposed a toast to health and happiness of the Swazi King and all the people of Swaziland. Bayethe,” he said.
Soon after, there was a clinging of glasses as people rose their glasses for the toast.
...Emazinyane bring smiles to King
Emazinyane brought smiles to His Majesty King Mswati III’s face during the evening celebrations of His Majesty’s 46th birthday held at the Mavuso Centre on Thursday.
Princess Sikhanyiso was the first to go on stage with back up dancers and they performed a song titled ‘Hosana’ She then announced that she would be joined by surprise guests, which were her younger siblings. “Could you please join me on stage Malangeni,”she said.
The young princes and princesses started singing together a song titled ‘Hail Your Majesty’ and some of them would jump to different keys in the middle of the song. This was met with great applauses from the crowd and a smile from His Majesty’s face. Princess Sikhanyiso dropped a few punch lines between the song, while the princes and princesses danced in the background. The performance was a colourful one with Sibhaca dancers also taking part.
Princess Sikhanyiso said they were honoured to perform before His Majesty as he celebrated 46 years, as well as the country’s development. She referred to His Majesty as an eloquent man of God who led with wise leadership.
...King showered with gifts
His Majesty King Mswati III was showered with gifts at the Lozitha Palace on Thursday evening.
The presents His Majesty received were indeed fit for a King, and ranged everywhere from grand pianos, cattle, Cuban cigars, exclusive art work to mention a few.
Some of these gifts also include a coffee maker for the Commissioner of His Majesty’s Correctional Services Mzuthini Ntshangase, an exclusive mirror and couch from businessman Victor Gamedze, perfumes from Shan CRCC from China, artwork and couches from 12 chief executive officers in the country, a custom made watch from Jacob the Jeweller, to mention a few.
All representatives of the organisations that were presenting the gifts had a chance to present them to His Majesty and explain them to him.
He thanked each and every one personally, and expressed his appreciation.