Maputo — The Central Committee of Mozambique's ruling Frelimo Party will debate the party's defeat in the mayoral by-election in the northern city of Nampula at a three day meeting that begins on Friday.
Addressing a Maputo press conference on Wednesday, the Central Committee secretary for mobilisation and Propaganda, Caifudine Manasse, said the meeting, in the southern city of Matola, “will make an assessment of what happened in Nampula, in order to see what Frelimo is going to do in the forthcoming elections”.
He was referring to the nationwide municipal elections scheduled for 10 October this year and the 2019 presidential, parliamentary and provincial elections.
The Nampula defeat casts a shadow, although it should not have been unexpected. The last time Frelimo won in Nampula city was in the 2009 general elections. In the 2013 municipal election the city fell to the second opposition party, the Mozambique Democratic Movement (MDM), and in the 2014 general elections Renamo won the majority of votes in Nampula.
But the main item on the Central Committees's agenda is not the elections. Manasse said the meeting will discuss how Frelimo is running the government.
“The government will present the Central Committee with its vision of what has been done so far, with an eye on the manifesto to be launched for the municipal elections”, he said. The meeting will also look at Frelimo's record in managing municipal governance - there are Frelimo mayors, and Frelimo majorities in the municipal assemblies, in 49 out of the country's 53 municipalities.
Manasse said the meeting will also complete the composition of the Central Committee secretariat. At the last meeting, held immediately after the Frelimo 11th Congress in September, not all the places on the Secretariat were filled.