Friday, February 10, 2017

New peace talks a trap for Mozambicans

Resultado de imagem para daviz simango moçambiqueMDM president Daviz Simango says the new model of dialogue is a trap for Mozambicans and that the results of it will be a time bomb.“Creating commissions ignoring the essential, which is the revision of the Constitution of the Republic, the reduction of the powers of the Head of State, the election of the governors and the financial political autonomy of the magistrates, merely postpones the problems of Mozambicans and promotes a time bomb which may explode at any moment,” the MDM leader says.Daviz Simango expressed concern over peace negotiations not involving other political forces and civil society organizations, which, he believes will create further impasses in the future. He also reiterates that the ongoing dialogue may well accommodate only the interests of the two parties and not those of the entire nation.The president of the MDM once again stated that telephone agreements between the President of the Republic and the leader of Renamo were insufficient basis for an effective peace.“There must be a written agreement, something proven by mediators, a transparent contact. If this does not happen, we will continue in the same process as yesterday, where agreements were signed but behind the scene the conflicts continued.”Simango also expressed concern that the two parties remain armed and had no concrete plan to resolve this situation.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

RENAMO REACTIVATING POLITICAL ACTIVITY IN MANICA AND SOFALA

Resultado de imagem para Alberto MondlaneResultado de imagem para helena taipo e pereiraThe Mozambican rebel movement Renamo has relaunched its political activity in the central provinces of Sofala and Manica, with formal visits by Renamo delegations, including Renamo parliamentarians, to the provincial governors, Helena Taipo and Alberto Mondlane.Judging by the footage of these meetings shown on Tuesday by the independent television station, STV, they took place in a cordial atmosphere, with the provincial governments guaranteeing that Renamo can undertake peaceful political activity unhindered throughout the provinces.These meetings are the latest fruits of the Renamo truce that took effect on 27 December. Since that date, there have been no further Renamo ambushes on the country’s roads, and no clashes between Renamo gunmen and members of the defence and security forces.
Renamo parliamentary deputy Manuel Pereira, who headed the delegation that met with Helena Taipo, told reporters that his party’s political activities in Sofala will resume this week. He said he had received security guarantees from the Sofala provincial government.
Resultado de imagem para manuel pereira renamoThus local Renamo offices that had shut down during the peak of hostilities will reopen, and Renamo officials who had gone into hiding are being urged to resume their activities.Pereira said his delegation will now relaunch Renamo political work in Dondo and Nhamatanda districts, following this up with a mass rally in the densely populated Beira neighbourhood of Munhava. At these activities, the Renamo Sofala provincial political delegate, Albano Bulaunde, will be presented to the public. Bulaunde has been out of circulation for months: he had gone into hiding for fear of what Renamo calls “death squads”.
Bulande had claimed his name was on a list of people to be eliminated by the “death squads”. So he locked up the Renamo provincial office in Beira, and all the smaller offices in Beira neighbourhoods, and made himself scarce. Pereira said that Bulaunde and the entire Renamo machinery in Sofala are now working again. Taipo told reporters that, since the declaration of the truce, ten schools shut down last year because of Renamo military activities have now reopened, and roads that had been obstructed have been cleared.Provincial government spokesperson Helcio Canda confirmed that the government has given the Renamo Sofala political delegation security guarantees, so that Renamo is free to work in any corner of the province.

The next step in this apparent normalization will be the reappearance in public of Renamo leader Afonso Dhlakama, who is still living in a military base in the Sofala district of Gorongosa. Wednesday’s issue of the independent newssheet “Mediafax” suggests that Renamo wants its leader to reappear as soon as possible, and certainly no later than April. He is regarded as Renamo’s trump card for the municipal elections scheduled for late 2018.Outstanding problems are to be settled by two working groups appointed by President Filipe Nyusi and by Dhlakama on Monday. 
Resultado de imagem para manuel pereira renamo
One group will deal with decentralization, and the other with military issues.“Decentralisation” has become shorthand for Renamo’s demand that it be allowed to govern the six provinces where it claims, untruthfully, to have won the 2014 general elections. Currently, provincial governors are appointed by the President of the Republic. Changing this system, so that the governors are elected, either directly or by the provincial assemblies, would require a constitutional amendment.The key military issue is to dismantle and disarm Renamo’s illicit militia. This will involve incorporating some of the Renamo gunmen into the armed forces (FADM) and the police. Renamo wants constitutional amendments and changes to the legislation concerning provincial governments to be deposited in the country’s parliament, the Assembly of the Republic, in time for them to be debated early in the forthcoming parliamentary sitting, due to begin in late February.

Members of working groups

Resultado de imagem para governo e renamoMozambican President Filipe Nyusi and the leader of the Renamo rebels, Afonso Dhlakama, have appointed the eight members of the two working groups which they agreed to set up last week. According to a Monday release from Nyusi’s office, he has appointed two academics and jurists, Albano Macie and Eduardo Chiziane, to the working group on decentralization. Macie is best known as the author of books on administrative law and parliamentary procedure.
Renamo’s appointees to this group are Saimone Macuiana and Maria Joaquina, who are both former members of the National Elections Commission (CNE). Macuiana headed the Renamo side in the negotiations that produced the September 2014 agreement on a cessation of hostilities, an agreement that Renamo refused to implement.For the working group on military questions, Nyusi appointed two retired army officers, and veterans of the independence war, Gen Armando Panguene and Col Ismael Mangueira. Panguene is also one of the country’s top diplomats who has served as Mozambican ambassador to Lisbon, London and Washington.The Renamo members of this group are parliamentary deputy Andre Magibire and Leovilgildo Buanancasso, who is currently a member of the Council of State, a body that advises the President of the Republic.Last Friday, Nyusi and Dhlakama announced separately that the next stage in the dialogue between the government and Renamo will take place within these small working groups, without any foreign mediation.The international mediating team returned to their home countries in mid-December, with little to show for their work. Nyusi and Dhlakama have agreed to dispense with their services, at least for the time being, but have left open the possibility of recalling the mediators, if necessary.The country is calm, since the truce declared by Renamo, which took effect on 27 December, is holding. No further Renamo ambushes, or clashes between government forces and Renamo gunmen have been reported.The truce, and the agreement on the working groups, were arranged in phone conversations between Nyusi and Dhlakama, who is still living in a military camp in the central district of Gorongosa. No dates have yet been announced for the first meetings of the two working groups.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

“AT AN ADVANCED STAGE”

Mozambique’s Central Office for the Fight Against Corruption (GCCC) on Tuesday announced that it has requested from Brazil the documents concerning the bribe paid by the Brazilian aircraft manufacturer Embraer in 2009 to Mozambican officials to secure the purchase of Embraer aircraft by Mozambique Airlines (LAM).
Resultado de imagem para Eduardo Sumana
Imagem relacionadaThe spokesperson for the GCCC, Eduardo Sumana, told reporters “we should mention that the facts in question occurred in four countries, Right now we are at an advanced stage and the countries have responded positively to our requests”.The four countries concerned must be Brazil and the United States, where Embraer confessed to paying bribes and was fined 225 million US dollars, Sao Tome and Principe, where a shell company was set up to handle the bribe, and Portugal where this company had an account where the money was paid.According to the documents from the Brazilian Federal Prosecutor’s office, the bribe was demanded by the then chairperson of the LAM board, Jose Viegas, and Mateus Zimba, then the Mozambique representative of the South African petrochemical company Sasol, was the intermediary who set up the shell company, named Xihevele and registered in Sao Tome, that handled the 800,000 dollar bribe. Xihevele sent Embraer two invoices for 400,000 dollars each, and the money was paid into the Xihevele account in Portugal. From Embraer’s viewpoint the bribe appeared successful, since it resulted in LAM acquiring two Embraer-190 planes, for 32 million dollars each.Sumana said the GCCC is now investigating all the staff employed by LAM in 2008-2009, and third parties involved in the acquisition of the Embraer aircraft. 
This goes beyond the 800,000 dollar bribe paid by Embraer. Sumana said there are suspicions of criminal mismanagement of the payments made by LAM in the expansion of its fleet of aircraft. 
Resultado de imagem para odebrecht aeroporto de nacalaAs for the second scandal involving a Brazilian company, Sumana said the GCCC expects to obtain from the Brazilian authorities the names of the Mozambican officials who took a bribe of 900,000 dollars from the construction company Odebrecht. “We believe that by May we will have the identities of the people involved”, he said. As in the Embraer case, it was the US authorities who first investigated Odebrecht, establishing that the company had paid bribes to guarantee contracts for over 100 projects in a dozen countries (Mozambique, Angola, Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico, Panama, Peru and Venezuela).
Resultado de imagem para odebrecht  guebuza
The 900,000 dollar bribe paid to as yet unnamed Mozambicans, during the period of the government of President Armando Guebuza, appears to have been connected with the construction of an international airport at Nacala, on the northern coast. The conversion of the old Nacala air base into an international airport cost 200 million dollars – and appears to have been a spectacular waste, since the only airline flying to Nacala is LAM. It was hoped that Nacala would be a hub, linking southern Africa and the Middle East, but to date no international airlines have shown any interest in Nacala.The bribery scandal could break Odebrecht. The company must pay fines of at least 2.6 billion dollars. Two of the countries where Odebrect paid bribes – Peru and Panama – have put Odebrecht on a black list of companies barred from taking part in tenders, and others might follow.