Mozambique: Renamo Claims Demobilised Fighter Has Been Murdered

Maputo — Andre Majibire, the general secretary of Mozambique's main opposition party, Renamo, on Wednesday claimed that a recently demobilised member of the Renamo militia, Joao Muthandi, has been murdered.

Addressing a Maputo press conference, Majibire said Renamo had learnt of the murder last Thursday. Muthandi had been living in Panja locality, in Chibabava district, in the central province of Sofala.

He said Muthani had been killed "by armed men", but gave no further details of the crime. Majibire urged the police and administrative authorities to identify the killers and bring them to justice.

He denied a report carried by the weekly paper "Publico" that the former Renamo commander at the now dismantled base of Mangomanhe had died of poisoning. This former commander, whose name Majibire did not give, was in fact alive and living with his family.

Majibire took the opportunity to attack Antonio Bauase, one of the five Renamo members or former members, found guilty on Tuesday, by a court in the central district of Dondo, of attempting to join the "Renamo Military Junta", the violent breakaway from Renamo responsible for ambushes on the roads in Manica and Sofala provinces.

After the verdict, Bauase had told reporters he had only been put on trial "because Renamo has no president". Perhaps, during his months of detention, Bauase "acquired a kind of amnesia", said Majibire, and forgot that a Renamo Congress in January 2019 elected Ossufo Momade as the Party's new President.

Presumably Bauase's cryptic remark was his way of criticising Renamo for supposedly abandoning its members.

Asked whether Bauase remains a member of Renamo, Majibire said the reporters should direct that question to Bauase himself.

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