Mozambique: Observers Find Most Nacala and Quelimane Registration Posts Have Problems, but Beira Improved


The opposition provinces of Nampula and Zambézia continue to suffer a registration crisis. Observers from the Mais Integridade civil society observation consortium found 89% of registration posts visited in Quelimane in the week of 19-25 May had problems, a sharp increase from the 68% the week before. In Nacala Porto 75% had problems, and in Nampula city 50%, both higher than in the previous week.

There is also a major maldistribution of registration brigades, with a shortfall of registration brigades in opposition areas. Gaza has 140 extra brigades, almost double the number it needs. But Nampula needs 103 more brigades and Sofala 67. (see table below)

The big improvement was in Beira, where the STAE head had been caught on a WhatsApp group calling for a slow-down in registering opposition voters. Registration posts with problems dropped from 43% in the week 12-18 May to 25% in the most recent week 19-25 May.

But one-quarter of registration posts with problems remains very high. And these levels continue in southern cities, where technical assistance should be available and rapid - but clearly is not. In Maputo city 26% of registration posts visited had problems, up from 19% the week before; in Matola it was 18%. But in the Frelimo stronghold Gaza, only 11% of posts had problems.

At a national levels, 29% of registration posts visited by observers in the last two weeks had problems. This is exactly the same level as in the first two weeks of registration. Thus it is clear that the CNE and STAE never set up an adequate technical response, repair and servicing system.

But the second issue is that since the start, there have been more than double to number of problems in areas which have historically voted for the opposition, compared to those areas when had voted for Frelimo.

It is also clear that some registration posts in opposition areas have been well run with low levels of problems, which shows the problems are not all technical. This also raises questions about possible political bias by registration brigades and supervisors, and in the assignment of registration brigades.

Mais Integraidade teams visit several registration posts a day and the following tables are based on their reports for the past two week. The %age shows the proportion of posts visited with problems (see more details below). Thus in past week, only 11% of registration posts in Quelimane were operating normally and 89% had problems.

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