Welcome to Zitamar’s daily Mozambique briefing for 13 August, 2018.
- Today: Last day for parties to submit candidates to the National Elections Commission for municipal elections on 10 October
The latest from Zitamar News:
Mozambique military starts new offensive on Cabo Delgado insurgency
The Mozambican military hit an insurgent base deep in the bush in Palma district on Monday – and is planning more such attacks
Photo of the day:
President Filipe Nyusi chairs a panel discussion at the Anadarko-hosted seminar on local opportunities held in Pemba on Friday. Photo: President’s Press Office
The best of the rest:
- Police name leaders of Cabo Delgado insurgency
- Police say unknown local businessmen abducted Andre Hanekom in Palma
- Anadarko earmarks $2.5 billion for local contracts
- Youth org invites Samora Machel Jr. to head their list in Maputo election
- US promises $5.6m for agricultural pest control
- Businessman suspected kidnapped in Manica
Police name leaders of Cabo Delgado insurgency (Notícias)
Mozambican national police commander Bernardino Rafael announced yesterday in Pemba, Cabo Delgado province, that police have identified ten leaders of the armed insurgency in Cabo Delgado. The names, he said, were supplied by civilians living in areas affected by the insurgency. The names are: Abdul Rham Faisal, Abdul Azizi, Ibin Omar, Nuro Abdulreheman Bakar, Anlin Machude, Salumo Kijepel, Abdul Latifo, Fiquir, Saide Bongue, and Buraimo Anssumane.
According to Rafael, Faisal is said to be the leader of the insurgents, but the police commander did not offer any further details on the people named. The names, which may themselves be noms de guerre, offer few clues about the group but could be a useful signal to civilians unsure of the government’s strength in the conflict that the military is making progress.
Police say unknown local businessmen abducted Andre Hanekom in Palma (MediaFax, O País)
In the same address, Rafael said that South African businessman Andre Hanekom, whose abduction on 1 August in Palma in the north of Cabo Delgado province has been the source of much speculation, was not under arrest but had been kidnapped by unknown individuals suspected to be associated with a rival business. Hanekon himself spoke to the media over the weekend, saying that he did not know his assailants and that he was rescued by security forces after his captors left him for dead in the bush.
There are still questions about this story – not the least of which being the identity of the assailants – but Hanekon being caught in a business dispute turned violent is certainly more plausible than the rumors of him funding the Cabo Delgado insurgency and being arrested as a result.
Anadarko earmarks $2.5 billion for local contracts (AIM)
Speaking in Pemba on Friday, Anadarko’s Mozambique country manager Steve Wilson revealed that the American energy company is planning to spend $2.5 billion on local contracts for construction of its natural gas facility on the Afungi peninsula in Cabo Delgado. The contracts, for work that will take place between next year and 2024, will be available to Mozambican companies that have the skills necessary to meet Anadarko’s demands. At the same event, Mozambican president Filipe Nyusi said that the Mozambican state expects to be taking in $2.1 billion per year from Anadarko’s project, starting in 2025.
The key line is that the contracts are available to companies with the skills required – which are few and far between in Mozambique. Any Mozambican company that is able to fulfil Anadarko’s requirements would be at a natural advantage even without local content legislation; they are already incorporated in-country, they have the local knowledge, and Anadarko – like any foreign investor – would be incentivised to use them, to prove that they’re contributing to the local economy. Legal requirements to use national companies risk forcing investors to use expensive and inefficient contractors, often enriching existing elites while doing little to further the cause of inclusive development.
Youth org invites Samora Machel Jr. to head their list in Maputo election (MediaFax, VoA)
Samora Machel Jr., son of former Mozambican president Samora Machel, could run for mayor of Maputo in the October municipal elections on the Youth Development Association of Mozambique (AJUDEM) ticket, following an invitation from AJUDEM. Machel Jr., who lost his bid to head Frelimo’s Maputo list to the popular septuagenarian Eneas Comiche, thanked AJUDEM for the invitation, promising to consider it.
Today is the last day for parties to submit candidates for municipal elections, so if Machel Jr. is going to accept AJUDEM’s invitation he will have to do so quickly. If he does so, it would split the Frelimo vote at least two ways – and with the MDM still to announce their candidate, it could go three ways, increasing the chances of Renamo’s Venâncio Mondlane snatching a win.
US promises $5.6m for agricultural pest control (APA)
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Mozambican government agreed Friday to spend $5.6 million tackling the threat to the agricultural sector by pests and diseases. Half the funds will go to a pest management plan, while the other half will be used for research on and vaccination of vulnerable livestock.
The money will focus in particular on the the fall armyworm, the biggest pestilence threat to Mozambique’s agriculture right now.
Businessman suspected kidnapped in Manica (O País)
In Manica province last Friday night, local businessman Mahomed Iqbal, owner of Mafuia Motors and Mafuia Commercial, disappeared from his home. Police said on Saturday that they suspect kidnapping, but PRM provincial spokeswoman Elsídia Filipe would not make an official declaration. Filipe called the disappearance “an isolated case.”
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