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File photo / Daviz Simango
The leader of the opposition Mozambique Democratic Movement (MDM), Daviz Simango, has shrugged off the attacks on his leadership by the Mayor of the northern city of Nampula, Mahamudo Amurane.
In a long interview published in the independent daily “O Pais” on Monday, Amurane had demanded a public apology from Simango for the “political lynching” he had allegedly suffered at the hands of other MDM members.
Cited by the independent television station STV, Simango said that Amurane’s denunciations merely prove that there is freedom of expression inside the MDM.
As for the allegation that Amurane has been the victim of “harassment” inside the party, Simango said he did not have enough information to venture an opinion on this. He said the MDM has set up a commission which is working among the party’s membership to ascertain whether there is any truth in the claim.
He stressed that the MDM’s focus right now must be on the party’s second congress, due to be held in Nampula in December, and the 2018 municipal elections.
A more substantial response to Amurane came from the MDM national spokesperson, Sande Carmona, who, interviewed by the independent newssheet “Mediafax”, remarked “the fall of a swallow doesn’t mean that spring is over”.
Asked if this meant that Amurane was no longer an MDM member, Carmona denied this, since the Nampula mayor has not presented the party with any formal letter of resignation.
Nor did the MDM have any intention of expelling Amurane from its ranks. “That thought never crossed our minds”, Carmona said.
The MDM’s National Jurisdictional Council was analyzing the case, he added, and had even gone to Nampula to speak to Amurane. “I have no information about that meeting”, said Carmona. “But I can add that it will end with the opening of a case. I can’t specify what sort of case”.
As for the harassment claimed by Amurance, Carmona found it difficult to comment, because “he never presented any facts, data or even names of those who were harassing him”.
He accused Amurane of “acting in bad faith” by taking internal problems of the MDM to the press. The problems he complained of “concern the party, and the only appropriate forum for discussing them is inside the party”.
Amurane had spoken at length about a meeting of the MDM Political Commission in late 2016, at which he claimed he had been repeatedly slandered. That was not Carmona’s view.
“The members at that meeting were expressing their points of view about Amurane’s governance in Nampula”, said Carmona. “If we preach democracy, then we have to accept differences of opinion. We have to accept that there are various points of view about the same subject”.
He admitted that Amurane had only been given the opportunity to speak at the end of the meeting, but denied that the whole purpose of the meeting had been to attack and insult the Nampula mayor.Source: AIM