Maputo — So far only three Mozambican political parties have deposited the nomination papers for their parliamentary candidates with the National Elections Commission (CNE).
CNE spokesperson Paulo Cuinica told a Maputo press conference on Friday that these parties are the National Reconciliation Party (PARENA), the Social Renewal Party (PARESO) and the Patriotic Movement for Democracy (MPD).
None of these stand the slightest chance of winning any seats. In the previous parliamentary elections, in 2014, PARENA and the MPD each won 0.1 per cent of the national vote, while PARESO did slightly better, winning 0.13 per cent.
None of the three major parties - the ruling Frelimo Party, the former rebel movement Renamo, and the Mozambique Democratic Movement (MDM) - have yet delivered the paperwork for their candidates. They have until 1 August to do so.
Cuinica said the CNE has a team on standby at Maputo's main conference centre waiting to receive the paperwork from the parties. Candidates standing for the provincial assemblies may deliver their nomination papers to the provincial elections commissions, but none have yet done so.
Delivery of nomination papers is no guarantee that a candidate can stand. The CNE must check that the papers of each and every candidate are valid. Candidates must present an authenticated copy of their identity card or birth certificate, and proof that they are registered voters with a clean criminal record. For the provincial assembly elections, the candidates must also prove that they live in the province for which they are standing.
All candidates must present a declaration that they are eligible to stand and that they accept nomination.
Each list of candidates for each provincial constituency must include the names of enough people to full all the seats in that constituency, plus at least three supplementary candidates.
Cuinica said that tenders were launched on 10 July to acquire the materials needed for the 15 October general elections. These include additional ballot boxes and polling booths to supplement the ones left over from the last elections.
This is because there will be many more polling stations this year than in 2014, and because some of the existing boxes and booths have been damaged. Likewise more metallic and plastic trunks to contain the voting materials (usually one per polling station) are being acquired.
One tender is for the use of helicopters. Cuinica said the CNE estimates it will need six helicopters to take election material to remote areas in the northern and central provinces.