Mozambique: Election Results ‘Null and Void’ Says Renamo

Maputo Ossufo Momade, leader of Mozambique’s main opposition party, Renamo, on Monday declared that he regards the validation of the results of the 15 October general elections by the Constitution Council as “null and void”.

Addressing a Maputo press conference, Momade said the ruling by the Council, which is the country’s highest body in matters of constitutional and electoral law, was null because it “did not accept the truth of the elections”.

Renamo maintains that the elections were a “mega-fraud”, but it presented very few complaints of polling station irregularities to the district courts, even though appealing to the district courts was an innovation put into the amended electoral legislation in 2014 at Renamo’s insistence.

From election observation groups and from the media, it is clear that widespread fraud and irregularities did take place, but Renamo failed to use the legal channels at its disposal to prove its case.

The Constitutional Council admitted there had been irregularities, but claimed these did not “substantially” alter the results. However, the Council made no attempt to quantify the irregularities.

Momade repeated his threat to hold nationwide demonstrations to protest against the election results, but he gave no hint as to when such protests might be held.

He also insisted that the Renamo which he leads has nothing to do with the attacks against civilian buses and trucks on the main roads running through the central provinces of Manica and Sofala. It was the government’s responsibility to put an end to this situation, he said.

But almost no information has been made public since the signing of the agreement. One specific deadline was that all Renamo bases were to be dismantled by 21 August. As far as is known, not a single base has yet been dismantled.

Renamo is in deep trouble because it has split, with a faction calling itself the “Renamo Military Junta” denouncing the peace agreement, and threatening to kill Momade.

Once again Momade insisted that the “Military Junta” is not under the control of the Renamo General Staff. “Any act undertaken by that group is entirely their responsibility and the responsibility of those who command them”, he said. “It has nothing to do with Renamo, the Party which I lead”.

Momade accused the police and the defence ministry of trying to deceive the public by associating the Manica and Sofala attacks with Renamo.

Repeatedly police spokespersons have blamed the attacks on “Renamo armed men” and have refused to draw any distinction between the Military Junta and the Renamo mainstream.

Momade also denounced the terrorist groups, inspired by Islamic fundamentalism, who have been committing atrocities in the northern province of Cabo Delgado since October 2017.

He accused the defence and security forces of being inert and failing to take action against the insurgents. “I don’t understand the reason for this apathy”, he said.

Source: Agencia de Informacao de Mocambique.