Government accuses RENAMO of violating ceasefire

via Government accuses RENAMO of violating ceasefire – The Zimbabwean 14 July 2015

The Mozambican government on Monday accused the former rebel movement Renamo of systematically violating the agreement on a cessation of hostilities which former President Armando Guebuza and Renamo leader Afonso Dhlakama signed on 5 September last year.

At the 111th round of the apparently unending dialogue between the government and Renamo, the head of the government delegation, Agriculture Minister Jose Pacheco, accused Renamo of launching armed attacks in at least two provinces in early July, though without causing any fatalities.

“On 3 July, in Tsangano district, in Tete province, Renamo attacked a police unit”, he said, “and the following day it launched a second attack causing damage to a vehicle that was transporting police agents. These are clear signs that Renamo is not prepared to demilitarize”.

In the central province of Sofala, Pacheco added, a Renamo group kidnapped and assaulted a traditional chief, named as Jose Paulo, supposedly because he was mobilizing local people to undertake productive activities, in the context of publicizing the government’s five year programme for the 2015-2019 period.

In Pacheco’s view, these attacks give the impression that the government is faced with “a violent Renamo that is not interested in disarming”.

When journalists asked him about these attacks, the head of the Renamo delegation, Saimone Macuiana, said he did not have enough information to comment on the matter.

“It is true that the government may have brought this material forward verbally, but the Renamo delegation has demanded that it bring it in writing to the next rounds, so that we can understand what is happening”, said Macuiana.

Like all the preceding rounds that dealt with the matter, there was no progress at all on disarming and dismantling the Renamo militia. The government is still waiting for Renamo to submit a list of names of the people it wishes to see recruited into the armed forces and the police. Without this list it is impossible to integrate the Renamo gunmen into the defence and security forces, or, in the cases of those who are too old or otherwise unsuitable, back into civilian life.

Renamo will not hand over the list unless the government appoints Renamo figures to senior positions in the military and the police. The government has rejected such a share-out of top positions, pointing out that dividing military positions on party political lines, is in flagrant contradiction to Renamo’s demand that the state and political parties should be separated.