Swaziland’s king is officially changing the name of the African country to the Kingdom of eSwatini.
King Mswati III announced the news on Thursday during a celebration of the 50th anniversary of Swazi independence. According to Reuters, Mswati said the change is to shed the country’s past and revert back to before British colonization.
“So from now on, the country will be officially be known as the Kingdom of eSwatini,” he told a stadium crowd, according to NPR. The southern African nation gained independence from Britain in 1968, and he said change is all about African countries “getting independence reverted to their ancient names before they were colonized.”
He added that the name “Swaziland” has also caused confusion. “Whenever we go abroad, people refer to us as Switzerland,” he said.
eSwatini means “land of the Swazis.”
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