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A “Peace Club”, the newest attempt to mediate the conflict in Mozambique bringing together more than 250 religious confessions and political parties from the provinces of Manica, Nampula, Sofala and Tete, has been created.
The Peace Club brings together civil society organizations and political parties such as the Liberation Front of Mozambique (Frelimo) and the Mozambique Democratic Movement (MDM).
The Mozambican National Resistance (Renamo) has been invited to participate but is not as yet part of the club. Pereira Creva Gama, president of the Peace Club and the Fraternal Meeting of the Churches in Manica, does not know the reasons for this absence.
“The club does not discriminate against any entity that wants to be a part,” says Gama. “The doors are open to all, so we involve the political parties. We want to gather enough ideas to then find a strategy to end the political crisis in our country,” he explains.
The goal of the club, he said, is to impart basic knowledge about the need to preserve peace.
Peace begins in communities
The organization proposes to raise awareness among political leaders in order to end the conflict between the Mozambican government and Renamo. There are also discussions with young students, cultural events, sports tournaments and radio discussions with the population at large.
The initiative has the support of Tearfund, a Christian anti-poverty organization based in England, and another Kenyan organization whose name has not been revealed.
The president of the club stresses that it is not just about politics. “Our main theme is the role of religious confessions in bringing peace to society,” Gama says.
“We have seen that the churches do nothing in search of peace,” he adds. The club wants to create mechanisms to achieve effective peace – not only “political peace, but also peace as a whole”.
“We want peace to begin in our communities, through the churches,” he stresses.
Frelimo and MDM applaud initiative
Joaquim Mainato, head of the Frelimo Mobilization and Propaganda department in Manica, told DW Africa that the club would assist efforts by President Filipe Nyusi to bring peace to Mozambique. “We, as Frelimo, embrace the initiative because it aims to bring the political stakeholders together at a table so that dialogue can happen and differences are ended,” he said.
Emerson Francisco dos Santos, delegate of the MDM in Chimoio and member of the Peace Club, also welcomes the initiative.
“We congratulate the club on involving religious people, civil society and political parties,” he said, lamenting, however, the absence of the other political party sitting in the Assembly of the Republic.
“The MDM embraces the initiative because it believes that the Peace Club is important and comes at a good time, since we are in a scenario of talks at the highest level of our government and the Renamo party,” dos Santos concluded.Source: Deutsche Welle