9 October 2018

Mozambique: Largely Peaceful Campaign Comes to a Close, With Isolated Incidents

Photo: Pixabay
Mozambique flag.

The campaign ends today, Sunday, with two days for reflection before the vote on Wednesday. In most municipalities it was been orderly and calm, although there have been a handful of violent incidents.

In Beira, the Sofala provincial police commander, Alfredo Mussa, told a press conference Friday 5 October that the campaign had been peaceful with no electoral crimes, and he praised the parties for their civility. In Beira four parties are standing, MDM which is the present local government, Frelimo Renamo, and the coalition E-POVO.

In Mueda, Cabo Delgado, there was no violence between Frelimo, MDM and Renamo.

In Malema, Nampula, the mood of the campaign was orderly with just one incident, when a Renamo member of a motorbike knocked down an MDM member in a march, and police had to intervene.

Tete had a turbulent start with the shooting of a Renamo member by a policeman who is also a Frelimo official, but after that the campaign has been peaceful. Again, just the three main parties are standing. All credentials for observers and party delegates have now been issued. ,

Stoning a Frelimo Machine

Renamo supporters parading through Chimoio on 5 October passed road works in Herois Mocambicanos neighbourhood and noted that the road grader was owned by the Frelimo head of list, Joao Ferreira, so the began to stone the machine. Renamo officials intervened to stop the rock throwing. (See photo in attached pdf.)

+ In Mandimba, Niassa, Frelimo supporters went singing and chanting through the streets of the town on Friday morning, and threw bottles (some with alcohol) and insults at Renamo and MDM supporters. Police did not intervene. Frelimo has overwhelming support in the town.

+ In Monapo, Renamo supporters attacked four Frelimo members they accused of collecting voters cards. They interrogated and beat the group on 5 October in Nova Cuamba neighbourhood.

Outras Noticias

+ Catandica, Manica, has suffered frequent electricity cuts in the past two weeks, raising questions about whether there will be light for the count on Wednesday.

+ The mayor of Manhica and Frelimo candidate for re-election, Luis Munguambe, had been using municipal vehicles in his campaign, but when confronted he promised Friday to stop. But our correspondent noted municipal cars in the Frelimo campaign on Saturday.

+ Journalists of Televisao Miramar were stopped from covering the campaign of the Liberal Party for Sustainable Development (Partido Liberal para o Desenvolvimento Sustentavel, PLDS) on 4 October in Nampula. List head Ali Alberto, accused TV Miramar of giving much more time to Frelimo than PLDS. He ordered that . TV Miramar could not attend the launch of the party manifesto.

Other reports

Votar Mocambique has its own daily campaign summary, on http://www.mobilize.org.mz/ and has an interesting report (in Portuguese only) on five cases of conflict resolution in Chokwe, Gurue and Mocimboa da Praia - not yet posted on their website but available on ours: http://bit.ly/ResCon5Out

The Peace Room (Sala da Paz) in its report yesterday (in Portuguese only) concluded: "Overall, the Peace Room is satisfied with the way the election campaign has been run so far and hopes that this trend will continue until the end of 7 October. Despite the incidents recorded, we believe that the campaign was peaceful and that it took place in a climate of peace and mutual respect between the different competing groups." The report is available on our website.

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