African Dictator Propped Up By Coke (As In Coca-Cola)

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Some African dictators maintain power by force. Others by benevolent rule.

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King Mswati III, on the other hand, holds on to power with Coca-Cola, Newser reports. The King, who has 13 wives and a personal fortune of $100 million, is accused of suppressing democracy and using the nation’s treasury as his own personal bank account.

The article quotes the Lucky Lukhele, coordinator of the Swaziland Democracy Campaign, as saying:

“Coca-Cola must know they’re doing business with the wrong people,” she said. “At the end of the day it doesn’t benefit the economy in any way. Their profits don’t help the average Swazi, while the king is getting richer by the day.”

But Coca-Cola seems to brush off any calls to discontinue what is for them a very profitable partnership.

(Coca-Cola) Spokesmen say the company is not responsible for how taxes Coke pays to the government are spent. Coca-Cola adheres to the “highest ethical standards,” and aims to be “an outstanding corporate citizen in every community we serve,” said a company statement.

Do we really think that Coca-Cola cares about impoverished Africans being ruled (or lack thereof) by the continent’s last monarch? Check out the rest of the story here.

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