Lions, long treks and watching how teachers vote: Mozambique elections - By Joseph Hanlon
President Filipe Nyusi began a working visit to the province of Nampula and its Lalaua, Moma and Nacala-Porto districts yesterday (Thursday, 27). Nampula is Mozambique’s largest and most populous constituency.
Curiously, the arrival of the PR dictated the literal closure of almost all public institutions, including schools, whose students were allegedly forced to walk long distances to greet Filipe Nyusi at 9:00 a.m. at Nampula International Airport.
The Ikweli reporter spoke to several children who, escorted by teachers, walked more than 10 kilometres to greet the president.
“I study at Cossore High School. There are no classes today because we are going to greet the President of the Republic,” a Grade 10 student told our news team.
“The teachers said that anyone who does not go to the airport will be punished and may fail,” another student, also not in favour of the action taken by the school board, told us.
Pupils were also unhappy at being forced to carry flags and other Frelimo party symbols.
At Teacane Secondary School in Natikiri, the school board issued a circular instructing all teaching and non-teaching staff to go to the airport in red clothing.
Ikweli also visited other public institutions, such as the provincial secretariat, and found them deserted, their staff having also gone to the airport. The Provincial Directorates of Agriculture and Food Safety, Health, Works, Housing and Water Resources, Economy and Finance, Land, Environment and Rural Development presented the same scenario – everything was closed and nothing could be done.
In addition to public officials, students, members of the public and members of the Frelimo party, of which Filipe Nyusi is also president, too, were massed at Nampula Airport.
State vehicles were used to transport Frelimo members to the airport. Ikweli spotted state vehicles disgorging Frelimo members at the airport roundabout as early as 7:00 a.m. on Thursday morning.
By Aunício da Silva and Editor
Source: Jornal Ikweli