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The leader of Mozambique’s main opposition party has called on its leading dissident, who has questioned the legitimacy of a peace deal with the Frelimo government and the party leadership itself, to see “reason”.
Renamo leader Ossufo Momade issued the appeal to Mariano Nhongo, leader of the self-style Renamo Military Junta, which disputes the party leadership and is demanding fresh negotiations with the government.
“Mariano Nhongo is a Mozambican citizen and a member of Renamo and what we can do now is ask Nhongo to come back to reason,” said Momade, speaking in the province of Zambézia, in the centre of the country.
Nhongo, a lieutenant-general in Renamo’s armed wing, leads a military group that has describes itself as “dug in in the bush”, with 11 provincial military units. It takes the view that the peace agreement signed between the president of Mozambique, Filipe Nyusi, and Momade is null and void since, according to the group, the latter does not represent Renamo’s military wing.
The group, which is demanding Momade’s resignation, last month elected Nhongo himself as interim president of Renamo, outside the party’s official structure. It also threatened to return to conflict with the government if the latter is not open to talks.
In one of his first statements on the wrangling, Momade said that Nhongo and his group were undisciplined deserters.
The government and Renamo signed the Peace and National Reconciliation Agreement on 6 August.
The deal is the third signed by the two sides. The first was the 1992 General Peace Agreement, which put an end to 16 years of civil war, but which was violated between 2013 and 2014 by armed clashes between the two sides, due to disputes related to the general elections; in 2014 they signed another agreement to cease military hostilities, which was also violated until a 2016 indefinite truce was agreed, but without a definitive agreement until last month.Source: Lusa
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