Mozambique: Hunguana Warns of ‘Liberators’ Supressing Dissent

Some of those who call themselves “comrade liberators” are viscerally anti-democratic and hostile to different types of thinking typical of democratic systems, warned TeodatoHunguana. His outspoken comments carry weight because of his standing in Mozambique, and they underline the deepening divisions within Frelimo. A lawyer, Hunguana was a Minister of Information in the one-party state era, a Frelimo member of parliament, and finally a member the Constitutional Council. He was speaking on 10 August at a conference to mark the 25th anniversary of Mozambique’s press law. (Savana 12 August)

“I have no doubt that outrages and assaults are perpetrated by organized groups for the purpose of restricting freedom of expression, and imposing a regime of fear, silence and intolerance” with the ultimate aim of “restricting and curtailing our very citizenship”, he said. These “organised groups” are using all means ranging from social media to the “law of the bullet” to intimidate critics. He continued: “people have fallen, have been shot, because they think, because they have the freedom to think and express what they think. This is serious.”

The removal of a memorial to GiliesCistac underlines both the sense of intimidation and the deep splits in Frelimo. A highly respected expert on constitutional and administrative law, but also sometimes a thorn in the side of government, he was gunned down in 2015. In March the Universidade Eduardo Mondlane (UEM) Law Faculty, where he had taught, erected a memorial stone and named the library after Cistac. This was seen by some inside the party as an implicit criticism of Frelimo. Early this month UEM removed the stone and unnamed the library, saying only that the proper procedures had not been followed.

Source:Mozambique News Reports and Clippings