News24

Mozambique talks collapse

2012-12-17 22:03

Maputo - Talks broke down between Mozambique's government and restive ex-rebels Renamo on Monday after three rounds of talks on grievances failed to reach consensus, a Renamo leader said.

"They are politicising the civil service, there's discrimination in the armed forces and social exclusion, and no consensus above all on the composition of electoral commission bodies, so that's why the negotiations can't carry on," said secretary general Manuel Bissopo.

The meetings started came after movement leader Afonso Dhlakama returned to a former military base and threatened to return to war unless the Frelimo-led government agreed to negotiations.

A delegation of over 150 senior Renamo officials and soldiers will meet at their military base in Gorongosa in the centre of the country on Tuesday to plot their next move, Rahil Khan, political advisor to the party president Afonso Dhlakama, told AFP.

After the breakdown in talks the former rebel movement - and current main opposition party - will find "other ways to negotiate with the government", Bissopo told a media conference.

"The people will take action to force the government to negotiate with the opposition," he added.

Renamo complains only members of the ruling party are receiving the country's new-found natural resource wealth.

It also wants more of its demobilized fighters included in the security forces, and an overhaul of the electoral system to prevent fraud.

Once-demobilized Renamo soldiers have been undergoing training in the remote mountain camp since October.

After the talks the ex-rebels accused the government of not taking them seriously.

Frelimo negotiator Jose Pacheco, the country's agriculture minister, said "we believe the information which we shared with Renamo gave them clarity over our position".

Comments
  • osiris.fox - 2012-12-18 01:33

    Renamo deserve to be included more. Frelimo, please listen we don't want another civil war!

  • Blixum - 2012-12-18 08:30

    Interesting. Wonder how they will fight this upcoming war without the support of the previous SA regime. Frelimo is the Moz version of the ANC. Wonder where they built their Nkandla?

  • mmoledis - 2012-12-18 10:04

    In SADC we do not want any threats so Mozambique government should work for peace within the country they should negotiate with opposition parties and if settlement found they should form a government of national unity where all aprties will be represented and have say to parliament and government.

  • ewchauke - 2012-12-23 06:27

    The last time I was in our small village of Machazi, all renamo offices had been ordered to close and their flags torn into shreds by frelimo instructions. I found that to be provocation of the highest order.I wonder if frelimo remembers how long it took before we could smell peace in that country. Their arrogance and lack of respect for all the official oppositions will most likely plunge us back into mayhem and a massive reversal of all the developmental gains that have been spearheaded by the international community to date. Wouldn't finding common ground early enough be the sensible thing to do for the imperious Guebuza and his cronies? I am just wondering loudly here. Dhlakama should be warned that we have seen enough. Mass deaths, landmine maiming and all, if he is doing it for us, I would rather he doesn't. The table will always be the best boxing ring ever.we have been decimated enough. Enough is enough

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