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The ceasefire in Mozambique that was to end on Saturday has been extended for another 60 days. Afonso Dhlakama, president of Renamo, the Mozambican opposition’s main party, believes that this agreement will last.
“I believe that this time [we will have a lasting agreement], the way I talk to the President of the Republic, he also says that he is prepared to end all pending issues,” said Afonso Dhlakama, speaking by phone to a group of journalists gathered at Renamo headquarters in Maputo from the district of Gorongosa in Sofala province, central Mozambique.
Insisting that the “confusions in the country will cease,” Dhlakama recalled that he signed the 1992 General Peace Agreement with then Mozambican President Joaquim Chissano and the Agreement on Cessation of Military Hostilities in 2014 with Armando Guebuza, but the country was unable to live in harmony.
“We are going to see the agreement that I am going to sign with [Filipe] Nyusi, if it will end all the confusion in the country, in order to have effective peace, democratic elections, free and transparent, for the development of Mozambique,” said Afonso Dhlakama.
The Renamo (Mozambican National Resistance) leader added that the working groups on administrative decentralization and military affairs, formed with the government in the context of the peace negotiations, will work hard over the next 60 days to present proposals in their respective areas.
“What I can say is that serious work will happen, because we will have to finish this work, and then finally sign the final agreement of hostilities so that there will be effective peace,” he said.
The working group on decentralization, Dhlakama continued, will have to submit a draft law to the Assembly of the Republic, providing for the direct election of provincial governors and the financial autonomy of the provinces.
“The military issue is simpler, it is the framework of Renamo cadres in positions of leadership of the Defence and Security Forces, the [discussion on the detachment from political parties] of the police and the SISE [Information and State Security Services] will come later,” he added.
At the press conference on Friday, the Renamo leader announced the extension of the truce in the confrontations with the FDS for another 60 days, expressing confidence in a definitive agreement.
“I invited you to communicate and declare the extension of the truce, from 00:00 tomorrow. March 4, to May 4 of this year of 2017, we will have another 60 day truce,” Dhlakama said.
The truce is the third since December, after the first, which lasted a week, was extended by 60 days and ending on Sunday, March 5.
Peace in Mozambique has been under constant threat in recent years due to cleavages between the Mozambican Liberation Front (Frelimo, the ruling party0 and Renamo.
Between 2013 and the end of 2016, the country has been plagued by acts of violence opposing the Defence and Security Forces (FDS) and the armed wing of Renamo, as part of the challenge of the 2014 electoral process by the main opposition party.Source: Lusa /TVM