Intelligent news from Mozambique

Zitamar Daily Briefing, 21 June 2018

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Welcome to Zitamar’s daily Mozambique briefing for 21 June, 2018.

Agenda

  • Today: Final day of President Nyusi’s official visit to Zambezia province
  • Today: MDM registers for municipal elections, at the national elections commission in Maputo

The latest from Zitamar News:

Up to 3,000 people displaced by Cabo Delgado attacks – HRW
HRW researcher says her organisation’s official figures downplay the scale of the crisis

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The best of the rest:

  • More deaths in another attack by Cabo Delgado insurgents
  • Parliament postpones special session on constitutional reforms
  • Four men fight it out for Frelimo Maputo nomination
  • UK-based Globeleq takes lead role in Temane gas-fired power project

More deaths in another attack by Cabo Delgado insurgents (MediaFax, Lusa)
More people were killed and about 40 houses burned in an attack on Tuesday night in the village of Litandakua, in Macomia district, believed to have been carried out by the same insurgents who have been terrorizing Cabo Delgado since last October, and Macomia in particular since mid-May. Of those who were killed, some were decapitated and one child died when the house they were sleeping in was burned down.
The number of people killed in the attack is not yet clear. Notícias puts the death toll at three, while Lusa and CanalMoz report four and MediaFax reports five. Zitamar’s conflict tracker update today will list four deaths, and will be updated based on further reporting.

Frelimo disagreements postpone parliamentary approval of constitutional reforms (MediaFax, O País, CIP/Hanlon)
Late in the afternoon yesterday, the Mozambican parliament’s standing committee abruptly delayed the special session of parliament that had been called for today and tomorrow. The session was to allow parliament to pass bills that would implement as policy decentralizing amendments recently made to Mozambique’s constitution. The decentralization plan is a key part of a nascent peace deal between the government and Renamo.
In their newsletter, Joseph Hanlon and CIP identified the reason for the delay as disagreement within Frelimo on the specifics of local elections, including questions of whether the head of a party’s municipal list must reside in that municipality. “Rumours continue”, Hanlon wrote, “over more substantial disagreements within Frelimo on the draft law”, hinting at ongoing tension within Frelimo about whether the peace deal itself is worthwhile.

Four men fight it out for Frelimo Maputo nomination (MediaFax)
Frelimo’s party organization in Maputo City held a meeting yesterday to determine its options to head the list in October municipal elections. According to MediaFax, Samora Machel Júnior, a businessman and son of Mozambique’s first president, has both the most public support and the most behind-the-scenes backing. Other candidates include the actor and entrepreneur Gilberto Mendes, the lawyer Isálcio Mahanjane, and Frelimo’s current First Secretary for Maputo, Francisco Mabjaia.
Mabjaia probably has the most support among the party’s members in Maputo City, but – as evidenced by a poorly attended march he organised in Maputo on 2 June – he will struggle to mobilise support among non-members. Gilberto Mendes is the most popular candidate among the population at large, but will Frelimo be prepared to give him this plum role? Final consideration – if Venancio Mondlane does run for Renamo, as we now expect, it will mean a serious challenge to whoever is the Frelimo candidate.

UK-based Globeleq takes lead role in Temane gas-fired power project (ESI Africa)
UK-based emerging markets power plant developer Globeleq has formally taken an operating stake in the planned 400 MW Temane gas-fired independent power plant (IPP) project being developed by EDM and Sasol. Globeleq now has a 30.4% stake in the project, while EDM has 20.6%, and Sasol 49%.
Globeleq and its partner Eleqtra’s entry into the project was revealed by Zitamar News in April this year. The project’s viability depends on building transmission lines connecting the plant with Maputo – which arguably makes less economic sense than bringing the gas to Maputo to be converted into power close to the capital – but EDM is determined to pursue the project in Temane.

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