Mozambican expert says crisis in military withdrawal is the result of a "gentlemen's agreement"
Rádio Moçambique (File photo) / President Filipe Nyusi and Renamo leader Afonso Dhlakama (R) photographed in Maputo after their first meeting in Maputo on 7 February 2015.
Mozambican 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.Source: AIM