Maputo — Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi, speaking in Maputo in his capacity as president of the ruling Frelimo Party, declared that the extraordinary meeting of the Party's Central Committee, which began on Friday morning, is “the highest form of strengthening internal cohesion and consolidating the Party's gains”.
He urged “openness, frankness and understanding” in the debates that will take place during the two day meeting. This was an opportunity for Central Committee members to align their thoughts prior to the Party's 11th Congress, scheduled for September. Hence “there will be many different ideas during the debates and they are welcome”, declared Nyusi.
“This is the moment to discuss the best form of renewal and continuity of the internal bodies of Frelimo”, he continued. “We didn't come here to discuss what we've heard others say, or to anticipate what we think might go wrong in the coming stage. We came to think, and to build a modus operandi for the new and future challenges facing the Party”.
Nyusi stressed the importance of acting collectively. “One of us is not as intelligent as all of us”, he said. “We have to centre the debates around the interests of Frelimo and of the Mozambican people”.
During the debates, he added, “we have to understand the moment in which Frelimo is governing Mozambique, and the longings and priorities felt by Mozambicans”.
In a clear reference to his phone contacts with Afonso Dhlakama, leader of the rebel movement Renamo, Nyusi said “we have been tirelessly seeking the right formula for the differences between Mozambicans without resorting to violence”. The meeting was an opportune moment to discuss the major issues facing the Mozambican people - notably the search for peace and the cost of living.
After Nyusi's brief speech, the meeting continued behind closed doors. This Central Committee meeting is “restricted” - that is, the only people who may attend are Committee members, and there are no guests at all.
Normal practice has been to invite other senior party and government figures to attend the proceedings. But this time nobody other than Central Committee members is present. This is intended to allow all members of the Central Committee to speak their minds freely, without any inhibitions.
Currently there are 211 full members of the Central Committee and 11 candidate members. 201 of the full members are in attendance.