10 dead as riots subside in Mozambique

2010-09-04 07:39

Maputo, Mozambique – Ten people have been confirmed dead by health officials as calm has returned to Mozambique’s capital Maputo after three days of price riots.

A further 155 people were injured between Wednesday morning and yesterday afternoon, Mozambican Health Minister Ivo Garrido told journalists in Maputo.

Meanwhile, small groups of people staged riots in the Liberdade, Urbanizacao, Benfica and Magoanine townships around the city, the Red Cross told Sapa.

Groups were much smaller than during the first two days of rioting.

Mozambicans went on a massive strike in the capital and neighbouring town of Matola on Wednesday and Thursday to protest high increases in living costs.

Bread prices rose while the cost of water and electricity also went up following fuel price hikes and the devaluation of the national currency, the metical.

Yesterday riots broke out in central city Chimoio, where police opened fire with live ammunition when about 100 people set alight stalls and tyres in the biggest market, police spokesperson Belmiro Mutadiwa said.

Smaller groups also rioted in other parts of the city, but the unrest was smothered after more than 50 people were arrested, Mutadiwa said.

In the capital, the EN4 road leading from Maputo through Matola to South Africa, and the EN1 from Maputo to Xai-Xai were cleared and traffic flowed freely, state media reported.

Long queues formed at bread shops, supermarkets and fuel stations as residents stocked up on essentials for the first time in two days.

“I’m standing in line to pay my electricity because all the shops were closed. It’s unbearable to be without electricity,” said Alberto dos Santos (18), while waiting his turn at an energy outlet in Xicanhanine township.

“On one side the strike was a good thing, because it was done to lower the food price. But on the other hand, we were left without electricity, sometimes without fuel.”

Even when shops were open, people did not necessarily have enough money to buy food, security guard Jacob Matusse (62), told Sapa, while waiting for bread in a queue in Zona Militar.

“It wasn’t open yesterday. I didn’t have money.”

Instead Matusse had cassava, a staple food.

Government spokesperson Alberto Nkutumula told journalists on Thursday that demonstrators had damaged and looted shops, set alight four electrical substations and vandalised two petrol stations.

Twelve public buses and numerous cars had also been damaged.

The first day of riots caused damage estimated at 122 million meticals (about R24?million).

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.