Maputo — The incoming Central Committee of Mozambique's ruling Frelimo Party on Sunday afternoon elected Roque Silva Samuel as the Party's new general secretary, replacing Eliseu Machava.
This was the first item of business for the new Central Committee elected earlier in the day at the Frelimo 11th Congress, in the southern city of Matola.
Roque Silva was the only candidate for the position. 195 members of the Central Committee cast votes in the secret ballot election. 188 of them were for Silva, while the other seven were spoilt or blank ballots.
Roque Silva is currently the Deputy Minister for State Administration and for the Public Service. Before taking up this government position in 215 he had been Frelimo first party secretary in the southern province of Gaza.
The Central Committee also elected Raimundo Diomba as the secretary of the Verification Commission, the Frelimo disciplinary body, replacing Agriculture Minister Jose Pacheco who had held this post since the previous congress in 2012.
Diomba is currently governor of Maputo province, and previously governed the provinces of Gaza and Manica.
He received 194 votes from Central Committee members, and one blank ballot was cast.
The Central Committee moved on to elect the Political Commission, which is effectively the most powerful body in Frelimo. This election is heavily contested, and counting the votes is likely to continue into Monday morning.