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The leader of the self-proclaimed Renamo Military Junta on Friday (30/08) again threatened military action, calling into question the security of the election campaign, which begins on Saturday.
“There will be no elections” if the Mozambican government does not negotiate peace agreements with the group before the October 15 general elections, Renamo general Mariano Nhongo said in an interview with Lusa news agency a day before the beginning of the electoral campaign.
“If they insist on campaigning, a lot of people will die,” he warned.
The founder of the military junta of the main opposition party said he will not watch the “ruining” of democracy with the implementation of the agreements signed on 6 August between Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi and Renamo leader Ossufo Momade, agreements which the group classifies as “the result of an act of treason”, and claims were signed without the authority of party organs.
“You think that, by rejecting [renegotiation],we go where?” the leader of the junta asked, answering: “We are Mozambicans, and we will continue with the weapons.”
Speaking to Lusa, Mariano Nhongo announced the formation of a joint commission of Renamo deputies and generals to renegotiate the agreements in the coming days, but did not provide details on how any dialogue would be conducted.
“I have already invited the deputies to form the commission that will negotiate with the government,” he said in telephone statements from the central Gorongosa mountain range, adding that a group of parliamentarians should go to the group’s base for consultation.
Nhongo expects the new commission to appoint him negotiator in dialogue with the government and to initiate efforts to postpone the general elections, revise the electoral law and conduct a new voter registration.
Regarding military matters, Nhongo said the commission would renegotiate the peace and cessation of military hostilities agreements, seeking the proper integration of guerrillas in the police, the Rapid Intervention Unit (UIR), and all sectors of the army and other branches of the military and the State Information and Security Service (SISE), as per the points already agreed by the party’s historical leader, Afonso Dhlakama, who died in May 2018.
“The Military Junta has the [agenda] points to compel the government to return to those it had signed with the late President Afonso Dhlakama,” he noted.
According to the Military Junta leader, the group has not yet entered into diplomatic contacts with Portugal and Rwanda, countries that the group considers examples of democracies and whose mediation in the new demobilisation, disarmament and social reintegration process it has publicly requested, alongside that of the International Red Cross.
Nhongo also denounced an alleged plan for government troops to attack the group’s bases in the Gorongosa mountain range, a response to which he is still pondering.
“It is Nyusi and Ossufo who want war. When there is war in Mozambique, let the Mozambican people ask these two men,” Nhongo said, adding that the two leaders had betrayed the spirit of agreements reached by Afonso Dhlakama.
The ‘Military Junta’, which has been contesting Ossufo Momade’s leadership since June, elected Mariano Nhongo as Renamo’s interim president on its own initiative last week, in defiance of the party’s official structure.
Contacted by Lusa, Renamo spokesman José Manteigas distances himself from the internal opposition.
“We have not and have never had any contact with the military junta. We [party organs] owe obedience to Ossufo Momade, the elected president of Renamo,” he said.Source: Deutsche Welle
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