Welcome to Zitamar’s daily Mozambique briefing for 20 August, 2018.
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- Today: Venâncio Mondlane, Renamo’s lead candidate for Maputo’s municipal elections, responds to a charge of defamation at the city prosecutors’
The latest from Zitamar News:
Água Vumba stake sold but listing still years away, say Portuguese investors
A controversial businessman linked to Mozambique’s ruling party has sold a stake to Portuguese investors – who plan ultimately to list the company
Photo of the Day:
Filipe Nyusi addresses the 1st National Meeting of Frelimo’s Social Organisations, in Tete on Saturday.
The best of the rest:
- Police open fire on Pemba Logistics Base protest
- Maputo candidates on ‘Samito’ Machel list denounce Frelimo intimidation
- Nyusi calls for unity in Frelimo
Police open fire on Pemba Logistics Base protest (RFI, O País)
Police in Pemba fired tear gas and live bullets into the air to disperse a protest on Friday against the Pemba Logistics Base project which is encroaching on the protesters’ farmland. The unarmed protesters, mostly women and old people, had erected barricades on the roads – which a police spokesman said proved the protest was not peaceful. The community has been protesting against the project for three years.
The Pemba Logistics Base project has been a disaster ever since the contested and probably corrupt contract award in 2014. The Chinese company contracted to build it has withdrawn, and Orlean Invest – one half of the ENHILS JV developing the project – is said to want to sell its stake. Meanwhile, the chaos surrounding the project could mean Pemba is largely bypassed as a hub for oil and gas developments in the north of Mozambique.
Maputo candidates on ‘Samito’ Machel list denounce Frelimo intimidation (Mediafax, O País)
Candidates on the AJUDEM list for the Maputo municipal assembly, which is headed up by Frelimo rebel Samora Machel Jr., say they have been subject to intimidation from Frelimo. The group’s spokeswoman, Artemisa Magaia, said members have been called to an “interrogation” due to happen today.
On Friday, four members of the list tried to withdraw their candidacies, which could also be due to pressure from Frelimo who fear that Machel Jr. will take votes from the party’s candidate, Eneas Comiche – potentially allowing Renamo’s Venancio Mondlane to win the mayoralty. The election authorities are today considering what to do.
Nyusi calls for unity in Frelimo (AIM)
President Filipe Nyusi addressed a meeting of ruling party Frelimo’s ‘social organisations’ – the Mozambican Women’s Organisation (OMM), the Mozambique Youth Organisation (OJM), and the Association of Veterans of the National Liberation Struggle (ACLLN) – in the first ever meeting of its kind. At the meeting, in Tete, Nyusi said that since mayoral candidates for all the municipalities have now been chosen, all party members should “cultivate the values of unity, cohesion and the spirit of comradeship”.
The meeting looks like a direct response to the three organisations’ support for Samora Machel Jr. in Maputo. Commentators are saying that if Frelimo loses the Maputo municipality, it will call into question whether Nyusi should be the party’s candidate in next year’s presidential election – so there’s a lot at stake for him personally.
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