Mozambique Elections: Renamo Junta attack, bending statistics, beatings - By Joseph Hanlon
The Mozambican police announced on Friday that it has extended investigations into the disappearance of the Portuguese businessman who disappeared eight months ago throughout the entire country and now has the support of authorities from neighbouring countries.
In an interview with Lusa, Mozambican police spokesman Inácio Dina said that the case previously confined to the centre of the country, where the man went missing, is now a national priority.
“We have extended investigations nationwide and we also have help from neighbouring countries,” Dina said, noting that Mozambique is part of the Southern African Police Organisation and Interpol, entities that have “contributed a lot” to the clarification of complex crimes in the past.
The Portuguese businessman has been missing for eight months after being seized by persons unknown somewhere in the Gorongosa district, a region for a long time marked by confrontations between the Defence and Security Forces and the armed wing of the Resistance National Mozambican (Renamo), the country’s main opposition party.
In an interview with the weekly newspaper Canal de Moçambique, Renamo leader Afonso Dhlakama accused members of the Defence and Security Forces of kidnapping the Portuguese businessman, add that the attributing the disappearance to Renamo was “cheap propaganda”.
“According to reports, the man went to the petrol station to fill up his car, and the FADM forces arrived and they picked him up, as if it was a joke. Everyone saw it,” Dhlakama said.
Asked about the Renamo statements, Inácio Dina said that the police’s main concern at the moment is to ensure that the Portuguese man gets back to his family, and that there are “specialized teams on the ground and they are the ones that must speak”.
“Any citizen, national or foreign, who has any information relevant to the clarification of a particular crime, should come forward and present it to the competent authorities,” Dina said. In an investigation like this, the authorities “did not rule out any possibility,” he added.
“It is the state’s wish to see this case solved,” Dina concluded, calling for calm and for avoiding statements that might “disrupt investigations”.
Speaking to Lusa earlier this month, Portuguese Foreign Minister Augusto Santos Silva said that the Portuguese authorities were “very concerned” about the lack of information on the Portuguese citizen’s location.
‘The Portuguese authorities – the president and the government – are very concerned, as is their duty, about the disappearance of a fellow citizens in Mozambique, especially since, several months later, we have no concrete information as to the fate or whereabouts of this man,” Augusto Santos Silva said on the sidelines of the inauguration of the Monaco principality office.
Previously, the Portuguese Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that the Mozambican Interior Minister told President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa and Prime Minister António Costa, “that the Mozambican authorities were continuing to investigate the matter of the missing Portuguese citizen”.Source: Lusa