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Mozambique’s largest opposition party, Renamo, has filed an appeal with the National Elections Commission (CNE) against its exclusion of Venâncio Mondlane as the party’s head of list for Maputo in the October 10 municipal elections.
The National Elections Commission now has five days to proceed and refer it to the Constitutional Council, which will deliberate on the case.
Renamo says that the CNE’s decision to exclude Venâncio Mondlane’s candidacy for allegedly renouncing his previous mandate is unlawful and unconstitutional.
“When we received the notification, what we did was to act and produce our appeal to the CNE because we understand that there is an illegality. First, because they acted on the basis of a law already repealed, the law 7/2013 and not only … the constitution itself is clear about this,” Renamo representative André Magibire explained.
Magibire cites Mozambique’s constitution to support his claim that this year’s electoral process must take place within the current legal framework.
“That means that all of those repealed laws would not apply in this case. Moreover, the constitution does not prohibit the right to be elected when it’s a case of the resignation of a candidate from a local organ.”
The exclusion of its head of list and candidate to the municipal election, Venâncio Mondlane, is therefore a violation of the law, Renamo maintains.
“They acted on the basis of an ordinary law and, as we know, ordinary law cannot contradict the mother law, which is the Constitution of the Republic. In these terms, we have lodged our appeal and hope that the Constitutional Council will know how to solve this conflict.”
Spokesman for the National Election Commission, Paulo Cuinica, however, lent his support to the Movimento Democrático de Moçambique (MDM), which challenged Mondlane’s candidacy.
At a press conference last week (21.08), Cuinica said that the exclusion of Venancio Mondlane was based on article 13 of Law 7/2018, which provides that “a citizen who has resigned in the immediately previous mandate is not eligible for municipal organs”. This is a rule which transited from Law 7/2013 of February 22, amended and republished as Law 10/2014 of April 23.
Constitutional Council ruling
After receiving Renamo’s appeal from National Elections Commission, the Constitutional Council will have five days to decide whether or not Venancio Mondlane can run in the municipal elections.
Civil society organisation AJUDEM (Youth Association for the Development of Mozambique), which supports the candidacy of Samora Machel Júnior, has also promised to appeal after the CNE rejected his candidacy last Thursday.
According to the CNE, the decision was made because to lack of substitutes in the AJUDEM list.
AJUDEM decided to support Samora Machel Júnior after his candidacy for Maputo mayor was rejected in internal elections of the ruling Mozambican Liberation Front (Frelimo).
The son of Samora Machel, the first Mozambican president, appealed to the Frelimo Political Commission, but the body never decided on the matter and the process ended with the election of Eneas Comiche as the ruling party’s candidate in the Mozambican capital.Source: Deutsche Welle