Source: 2019 General Elections – Mozambique Political Process Bulletin
Frelimo hijacks 25 September ceremonies
In many places across the country today, Frelimo turned ceremonies for 25 September into party rallies. Today (25 September) is the anniversary of the first shot of the independence war in Chai, Cabo Delgado, in 1964, and is Armed Forces Day.
In Nampula city, Frelimo supporters flocked to Heroes’ Square dressed in party t-shirts and capulanas. However, MDM supporters with posters and T-shirts from their party were banned from attending the event during a speech by Provincial Governor Victor Borges. He spoke only to Frelimo members and supporters, our correspondents report. Only after the speech were MDM supporters allowed to attend the ceremony.
But Frelimo did not dominate everywhere. In Manhica district, Maputo province, Frelimo and MDM supporters both showed up at the official ceremonies on September 25 with t-shirts from their parties. SISE (security service) district director in Manhica, Helder Guilambe, appealed to MDM’s campaign director not to campaign at the site. But MDM refused and both parties remained during the ceremony.
In many other places, government officials turned the 25 September ceremonies into Frelimo rallies. In Ibo, Cabo Delgado, people were told to vote for Frelimo during the ceremonies. Several state officials were present wearing Frelimo T-shirts, our correspondents report.
The same scenario was repeated in the Nacarôa and Mecuburi districts, Nampula. Frelimo supporters went to the main square dressed in Frelimo t-shirts, and no other party was present at the ceremonies today.
In Maputo city, Frelimo militants and supporters in party shirts, caps and capulanas participated in the commemoration of 25 of September in Combatants Square next to the Xikhelene market, our correspondents reported.
In Mabalane, Gaza, most of the people who came to the square for the 25th ceremonies were also dressed in Frelimo T-shirts and capulanas. The same was true in the Homoine, Inhambane, where Frelimo supporters participated in the Armed Forces Day march with flags from their party.
In Inhassunge district, Zambezia, the first secretary of the Frelimo district committee appealed to local people to vote for Frelimo and Filipe Nyusi during the 25th of September celebrations.
‘We will not surrender power’
Frelimo will continue to govern the country at all cost, said Gondola, Manica, District Administrator Moguen Candieiro. “We will not surrender power”, he told the population during the Armed Forces Day ceremony. Candieiro mocked the opposition parties and called on people to vote for Frelimo.
Neighbourhood head arrested for collecting voter card numbers
The head of neighbourhood 9 in central Xai-Xai, Gaza, was arrested yesterday afternoon for making a list of voters card numbers of residents of neighbourhoods 8 and 9. During Renamo’s door-to-door campaign in neighbourhood 9, Renamo supporters met 39-year-old Francisco Fabiao Maphosse noting voter card numbers, voter names and contact details, and the names of polling centres where each voter must vote.
Renamo supporters accused neighbourhood head Maphosse of preparing election fraud for Frelimo. Realizing the imminence of a physical assault, the police accompanying the Renamo caravan arrested Maphosse and took him to the 1st police station. Asked by police the reasons for collecting card numbers, the defendant stated that he did not know the purpose of the data collection and that it only fulfilled higher orders, apparently using a pre-defined form provided by the district secretary, Bernardo Johane.
“I work as a private security guard and was on duty when the district secretary showed up at my house. He handed the documents to my wife and said I should list the people who were registered in the 9th district, I don’t know where he will hand them in.”
After about an hour and a half, the neighbourhood head was released and police said they would refer the case to the Gaza Provincial Prosecutor.
Party funding: $1.7 mn to 3 big parties, $1.2 mn to 24 others
The disbursement was delayed, but more than $1.4 mn has now been given to 27 political parties and coalitions. Distribution details remain secret, but it is possible to calculate the amounts, shown in the table in the attached pdf version of this bulletin. Of the election budget of $105 mn (6,500 mn MT) the government has allocated $2.9 mn for the political parties for their election campaigns. So far the first half of the $2.9 mn has been distributed.
Of the entire $2.9 mn, Frelimo, Renamo and MDM will each receive $559,000 and AMUSI will receive $317,00. Of the parties not standing for President, the two largest amounts of money will go to PARENA ($102,000) and PARESO ($94,000). The smallest amount goes to UDM ($8,500).
There are three elections, for President of Mozambique, for national parliament (Assembleia da Republica, AR) and for provincial assemblies. The money is divided in three steps.
- The first division of the money is to allocate $972,000 for each of the three elections.
- Second, the electoral law specifies that money is allocated according to the number of candidates, so each block of $972,000 is divided among the parties in proportion to their number of candidates. There are four presidential candidates, 5,232 candidates contesting 250 seats in the national parliament (AR), and 2,863 candidates contesting 794 seats in provincial assemblies.
- Third, the money is dispersed in three tranches – the first 50% up front and then two blocks of 25%, each dispersed only when the party accounts for the previous tranche are approved by the CNE. All parties have received the first tranche and some the second.
Money can only be spent on campaign material, travel and bank charges. It cannot be spent on salaries, food, or buying, renting or rehabilitating offices or vehicles.
The largest amounts of money go to the three big parties that are standing for president, all AR seats, and all AP seats. Frelimo, Renamo, and MDM each receive $559,000. Next comes AMUSI, standing for President, most AR seats, and some AP seats, with $317,00. Two small parties standing for most AR seats and some AP seats, PARENA and PARESO, receive $102,000 and $94,000.
All but one party (PAHUMO) is contesting some seats in the national parliament (AR), but only 4 are standing for president and only 7 are contesting seats in the provincial assemblies, which means less money is available for AR candidates. Parties wise enough to stand in more AP provinces have received more money.
CNE secrecy promotes fake news
The National Elections Commission (CNE) has become less transparent. It hardly uses Facebook and does not use its website. Few details have been released about party finance, except to tell parties that Deliberacao nº 58/CNE/2014, de 9 de Julho is being followed.
This has created space for fake news, attributed to a senior figure in the CNE, that a change was made to the distribution of money. The change was said to be that after the money was divided in thirds for the three elections, the money for AP and AR elections was divided next by constituencies (11 provinces plus Africa plus Europe for AR, 10 provinces for AP). It was claimed that only then was it divided by candidates. The system would have shared the same amount of money to parties in small constituencies such as Africa, with only one seat in the AR, as to Nampula with 45. This would have violated the law saying there should be equalities in money for candidates. It also would have given $14,000 more to each of the three biggest parties, while taking $12,000 from PARESO and other amounts from some of the smaller parties.
We asked CNE for clarification, but none was forthcoming. So we asked parties how much money they had been given in the first tranche, and calculated backwards to see which method was used. And we found that the CNE has distributed the money correctly and followed the law. The other report was wrong – fake news. But the CNE would not help us refute fake news that was falsely reporting CNE actions. Instead, we had to do the calculation to show that the CNE did the right thing.
Correction: six deaths in Cuamba not caused by mine explosion
“An explosion at an artisanal mine in the Joao neighbourhood of Cuamba killed six people at the same time as Frelimo presidential candidate Filipe Nyusi was holding a rally in the same city,” we said in Bulletin 54 of 18 September. However, that information was wrong. The six deaths were caused by lynching rather than a mine explosion. Sometimes we, too, are victims of fake news.
Editor: Joseph Hanlon | Publisher: Edson Cortez | News Editor: Borges Nhamire
Reporters: Aldemiro Bande, Magda Mendonça, Sheila Nhancale, Graciano Claudio, João Machassel
Published by CIP, Centro de Integridade Pública (Public Integrity Centre),
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There are two archives of historic elections data, at IESE on http://www.iese.ac.mz/eleicoes-resultado/ and at London School of Economics on http://bit.ly/MozElDaa. The LSE archive now has detailed 2013 and 2014 results, by polling station.
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