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Citizens

What the Constitution says about citizenship

ACQUISITION OF CITIZENSHIP


Citizen of Swaziland.
1.0. A person who, on the commencement of this Constitution, is a citizen of Swaziland shall continue to be such citizen.
Citizenship by descent.
11. A person born, whether before or after the commencement of this Constitution and whether in or outside of Swaziland, is a citizen by descent if by birth that person is a descen-dant.

 

Citizenship by operation of law.
1.2. (1) A person born in or outside Swaziland before the commencement of this Constitu-tion shall be a citizen of Swaziland by operation of law if at the birth of that person one of the parents was a citizen of Swaziland.
(2) In this section ―citizen by operation of law‖ refers to a person who was born be-fore the existence of the status of a citizen of Swaziland and was a member of a class of persons —
(a) generally regarded as Swazi by descent; and
(b) subsequently declared by law to be citizens of Swaziland.
(3) This section shall cease to apply to a person being a citizen of another country who, on being so required by the Board in terms of section 49(1)(d), has failed to renounce that other citizenship —
(a) within one year after that person attains the age of majority (or within such extended period as the Board may allow); or
(b) where that person attained the age of majority before the commencement of this Constitution, within one year after that commencement (or within such extended period as the Board may allow).

 

Citizenship by birth.
1.3. (1) A person born in Swaziland after the commencement of this Constitution is a citizen of Swaziland by birth if at the time of birth the father of that person was a citizen of Swaziland in terms of this Constitution.
(2) A person born outside Swaziland after the commencement of this Constitution is a citizen of Swaziland if at the time of birth the father of that person was a citizen of Swaziland in terms of this Constitution.
(3) A person born outside Swaziland who becomes a citizen by virtue of subsection (2) shall cease to be a citizen if the father of that person was also born outside Swaziland unless, within one year after attaining the age of majority (or within such extended time as the Board may allow) that person notifies the Board in writing of the desire to retain the citizen-ship of Swaziland.
(4) Where a child born outside of marriage is not adopted by its father or claimed by that father in accordance with Swazi law and custom and the mother of that child is a citizen of Swaziland, the child shall be a citizen of Swaziland by birth.
(5) A child adopted, whether before or after the commencement of this Constitution, under the legislation relating to the adoption of children or under customary law, shall, if not already a citizen, be deemed to be a citizen of Swaziland by birth if, at the time of adoption the adoptive parent was a citizen of Swaziland or would have been a citizen if this Constitu-tion were in force.

 

Citizenship by marriage.
1.4. (1) A woman who is not a citizen of Swaziland at the date of her marriage to a person who is a citizen (otherwise than by registration) shall become a citizen by lodging a declara-tion in the prescribed manner with the Minister responsible for citizenship or with any Diplo-matic Mission or Consular Office of Swaziland or at any other prescribed office, either before or at any time during the marriage, accepting Swaziland citizenship.
(2) A woman who lodges a declaration in terms of subsection (1) shall be a citizen from the date of her marriage, where the declaration is lodged before the marriage, or where the declaration is lodged after marriage, from date of lodgement.
(3) This section applies to marriage whether before or after the commencement of this Constitution.

 

Citizenship by registration.
1.5. (1) A person may acquire citizenship by registration where that person satisfies the Board on the conditions set out in subsection (2), (3) or (4).
(2) The conditions for registration of a person are that the person —
(a) has been ordinarily and lawfully resident in Swaziland —
(i) for a continuous period of at least twelve months immediately preceding the date of application for registration; and
(ii) for periods amounting in the aggregate to not less than five years during the seven years preceding the date of application for registra-tion;
(b) is of good character;
(c) has an adequate knowledge of siSwati or English;
(d) intends, in the event of citizenship being granted, to reside in Swaziland;
(e) has adequate means for support whilst in Swaziland; and
(f) has contributed and shall contribute to the development of the country.
(3) A person who is ordinarily resident in Swaziland and has been so resident for a period of at least ten years and whose application is supported by a Chief after consultation with bandlancane or supported by three reputable citizens, may be registered as a citizen.
(4) Citizenship by registration shall not be granted to any person under this section until that person has taken the oath or affirmation of allegiance in the Second Schedule or such other oath or affirmation as may be prescribed.
(5) The person to whom citizenship is granted in terms of this section shall be a citi-zen from the date on which a certificate of registration as a citizen is granted.
(6) In this section, ―bandlancane‖ means a Chief’s council established in accordance with Swazi law and custom.
Posthumous children.
1.6. A child born after the death of the father shall be deemed to be a citizen under this Chapter on the same conditions as if the father were alive when that child was born.
Foundlings.
1.7. A deserted child of not more than seven years found in Swaziland shall, unless the contrary is proved, be deemed to have been born in Swaziland and shall be treated for the purposes of this Chapter as a citizen by birth.
Birth aboard a ship or aircraft.
1.8. (1) A person born aboard a ship or aircraft registered in Swaziland wherever it may be shall be deemed to be born in Swaziland.
(2) A person born aboard an unregistered ship or aircraft of the Goverrnment shall be deemed to be born in Swaziland.

CITIZENSHIP APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS

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