Intelligent news from Mozambique

Zitamar Daily Briefing, 31 August 2018

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Welcome to Zitamar’s daily Mozambique briefing for 31 August, 2018.

Agenda

  • Today: Conference on extractive industries in Cabo Delgado, organised by the Universidade Católica de Moçambique, the Centro de Integridade Pública (CIP), and sponsored by the Dutch Embassy
  • Tomorrow until Wednesday, 5 September: President Filipe Nyusi and ministers Maleiane (finance), Pacheco (foreign affairs), Tonela (mining and energy), and Mesquita (transport and communication) in Beijing at the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC)
  • Sunday, 2 September: Mozambique-China investment promotion round table, at the Grand Millennium Hotel, Beijing
  • Sunday, 2 September: Mozambique’s biggest trade fair, FACIM, closes

The latest from Zitamar News:

Renamo slams Frelimo’s ‘abuse’ of security forces in election campaign
Renamo leader says the ruling party is using the police to block Renamo candidates, while with the other hand negotiating a ‘national reconciliation’

Mozambique Politics Live Blog
Keep abreast of the latest developments in the run-up to municipal elections with our Live Blog, on Telegram or on our website

The best of the rest:

  • Cabo Delgado insurgent attack kills one, leaves three in intensive care (Pinnacle News)
  • Frelimo says Renamo’s accusations are wide of the mark (O Pais)
  • Ethiopian Airlines to base Moz operation in Nacala (Notícias)
  • State housing development fund loses $13.9m in India corruption case (@Verdade)
  • Police expel 206 migrants out of Tete (AIM)

Cabo Delgado insurgent attack kills one, leaves three in intensive care (Pinnacle News)
One man is dead and at least three more are receiving intensive treatment this morning in the Chicuendo health centre in Pundanhar, in the Palma district of Cabo Delgado,  following an attack last night attributed to the Ahlu Sunnah Wa-Jamâ insurgency. The three injured survivors are expected to be transferred to the provincial hospital in Pemba today, once their condition has stabilised.
Pundanhar, inland from Palma and close to the Rovuma River that makes the border with Tanzania, has emerged over recent weeks as the centre of the conflict between the military and insurgents – who continue to terrorise the civilian population, as the report of last night’s events makes clear.

Ethiopian Airlines to base Moz operation in Nacala (Notícias)
Ethiopian Airlines will base its Mozambican operation in Nacala, the head of Aeroportos de Moçambique, Emmanuel Chaves, told journalists at the FACIM trade fair yesterday – adding that state airline LAM’s smaller subsidiary, MEX is in talks to follow suit. The move (or moves) could mean Nacala Airport loses its ‘white elephant’ status – particularly if Ethiopian, which will begin domestic flights on 1 October, also uses the airport for international flights.
In a brief call with Zitamar News this morning, Ethiopian’s country manager in Mozambique Daniel Tsige confirmed the 1 October start date and the plan to be based in Nacala – which will be a relief to the airport company, the city of Nacala, and whoever was responsible for the decision to build the Nacala Airport.

Frelimo says Renamo’s accusations are wide of the mark (O Pais)
Frelimo spokesman Caifadine Manisse said yesterday that Renamo’s accusations that Frelimo is using the police force to stop his party competing in the municipal elections on a level playing field, are pointed in the wrong direction. Frelimo is concentrating on its own candidates in the 53 municipalities that will elect assemblies and mayors in October, Manisse said, rather than trying to block Renamo’s.
A predictable response which doesn’t expect to be taken seriously, and won’t be.

State housing development fund loses $13.9m in India corruption case (@Verdade)
The Fundo de Fomento à Habitação (FFH) paid $13.9m to Indian construction company Ultra Home Constructions to build 400 homes in the province of Tete in 2016 – but none of them have been built yet, and when FFH tried to cash the bank guarantee it had been given, it found that the bank – the supposed International Trade Bank Limited of Italy – didn’t exist. An Indian EXIM Bank official told the Indian Express, which uncovered the story, that the case is “a very sensitive matter between two governments”.
Both @Verdade and Zitamar News have tried to interview FFH about this story – but no one will talk about it, presumably out of embarrassment at not having checked if the guaranteeing bank existed or not.

Police expel 206 migrants out of Tete (AIM)
The Mozambican police on Wednesday expelled 206 illegal immigrants from Ethiopia, Malawi and Zimbabwe, who had entered the country through Tete province, according to the spokesperson for the Tete Provincial Police Command, Lurdes Ferreira. The 206 were detained over the weekend after having crossed illegally along porous borders with Malawi, Zimbabwe, and Zambia – and were sent back to Malawi and Zimbabwe.
Tete has become the new entry point into Mozambique for refugees heading to South Africa – taking over from Cabo Delgado, where the deteriorating security situation appears to be discouraging either the refugees or their smugglers.

© 2018, Alexandre Nhampossa. All rights reserved.

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